FAA Approves AOPA Online Aeromedical Course

Third-class medical reform gets a boost with free AOPA Air Safety Institute medical course coming soon.

Third Class Medical FAA
AOPA's Air Safety Institute online aeromedical course has been approved by the FAA.Textron Aviation

As the FAA prepares to publish its final rule ushering in long-awaited third-class medical reform, AOPA is reporting that the agency has approved an online aeromedical course developed by the AOPA Air Safety Institute and confirmed it meets requirements Congress outlined last summer.

The Air Safety Institute will offer the course free to pilots, who will be able to take it every two years in addition to visiting their personal physician every four years in lieu of an FAA medical exam.

“We worked with a lot of constituents to get this course done,” said AOPA President Mark Baker, according to AOPA.org. “We’ve worked with a number of doctors, general practitioners as well as AMEs.”

The course covers a variety of medical topics, including the importance of exercise and diet and their effect on a pilot’s performance in the cockpit, AOPA says. It includes a quiz at the end of the course that pilots must pass to earn a certificate they should keep in their logbooks. Pilots will be able to keep taking the quiz until they pass.

The FAA is expected to release its final rule on third-class medical reform as early as this month. At that time the agency will announce the effective date when pilots can begin operating under the new reforms.