Medical fitness review

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Driving safely requires excellent physical and cognitive skills, as well as good judgment. Unfortunately, various medical conditions or impairments beyond your control can negatively affect your driving, putting you and others at risk on the road.

Different medical conditions – some permanent, others temporary – may impact a person's cognitive, physical, or visual abilities which can have a serious impact on driving skills. Driver Fitness evaluates fitness for driving using the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators’ Medical Standards for Drivers.

Initiating a review

If a concern has been raised about your ability to drive safely, a review of your medical fitness can be triggered in several ways. Physicians and optometrists are legally required to report patients whose medical condition may affect their driving. Medical fitness reviews can also be initiated when we receive police or accident reports, family concerns about your medical condition and driving, or if you self-report a medical condition.

You are required by law to report any change in your health or physical condition that is likely to affect your ability to drive. Conditions that must be reported include, but are not limited to those that affect vision, physical or cognitive abilities, as well as conditions that could make a person subject to a sudden loss of awareness while driving, such as epilepsy, cardiac arrhythmias, and sleep disorders.

Review process

In most cases, you will maintain your driver’s licence until we receive medical, vision or assessment reports. However, if your medical condition poses an immediate risk to you or other drivers on the road, we may need to suspend your licence until we review the associated medical reports. In some cases, further medical information, like specialist reports, or driving assessments, may be required to determine if your medical condition affects your driving ability.

Once it has been determined that you meet the medical standards, you may be eligible to have your driver’s licence reinstated.

Monitoring your condition

Driver Fitness may require that you provide periodic medical and/or vision reports to monitor your medical condition and driving record.

For commercial licence holders (Class 1, 2, 3 or 4), Manitoba applies national standards that require you to provide mandatory medical reports according to age as follows:

  • On application
  • Every five years to age 45
  • Every three years thereafter to age 65
  • Annually at 65 years and over

Commercial licence holders may be required to file reports more frequently if they have a medical condition. The medical standards for commercial licence holders are stricter given the types of vehicles driven and the amount of time spent driving.

Commercial restrictions in the U.S.

If you hold a Class 1, 2, and 3 licence, and have a medical condition identified in the Canada-United States Medical Reciprocity Agreement, a Code W restriction will be placed on your driver’s licence. This includes drivers with epilepsy, those who do not meet minimum hearing requirements to transport dangerous goods, and those operating under a medical waiver. This restriction is clearly indicated under restrictions on your driver’s licence and you will be notified by letter if it is applied.

Medical appeal process

If your driver’s licence is cancelled or declassed as a result of a medical or vision condition that affects your ability to drive safely, you may have the right to appeal.

If you have any questions or inquiries, contact Driver Fitness.