In addition to tying drivers' medical certifications to their CDLs, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration this week also announced a proposal to improve standards and set uniform requirements for medical examiners.

Monday, FMCSA issued a final rule that will require states to merge the commercial driver's license and the driver's medical examination certificate into a single electronic record. (See "New Federal Rules Tie Medical Certification to CDL," 12/1/08)

FMCSA also issued a related rulemaking that would establish a National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners to ensure that physical qualification examinations of CDL holders are performed by qualified medical practitioners and are administered in a uniform and consistent manner.

The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for the National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners would create certification standards, including a training and testing program, and a National Registry of medical examiners who are qualified to conduct examinations of interstate truck and bus drivers.

The proposal would require the medical examiner to electronically transmit to FMCSA the name and a numerical identifier for each driver who is examined. The proposal also would create a process by which medical examiners who fail to meet or maintain the minimum standards would be removed from the National Registry.

The NPRM for the National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners can be found at, docket number FMCSA-2008-0363. Public comments on the proposal should be submitted by January 30, 2009.