FAA Policy Challenged – ADA Says ‘Let Us Fly!’

A long-standing policy of denying a pilot’s license to any person with insulin-treated diabetes is being contested by people who feel that this is in direct contradiction of American Diabetes Association recommendations.

The ADA’s proposed guideline states that “any person with diabetes should be eligible for any pilot’s license for which he or she is individually qualified.”

The Federal Aviation Administration, in conjunction with medical experts, is considering removing the current “blanket ban,” and instead imposing strict guidelines on the licensing of people with diabetes.

To be considered, a person must be in superior physical condition, submit exhaustive medical records to the FAA, adhere to demanding testing requirements before, during and after a flight, and provide frequent medical updates and test results to the FAA. If any single condition is not met, no license would be granted.

The FAA is seeking public comments before deciding whether to implement the new guidelines, and letters from ADA Professional Section members in support of these guidelines are critically needed, according to Joe LaMountain, who is organizing the campaign.

People who are interested in helping can write a letter to the FAA urging them to implement, with no restrictions, the medical protocol developed by medical and aviation experts and end the “blanket ban” on people with insulin-dependent diabetes.

Letters can be sent to: Federal Aviation Administration, Office of the Chief Counsel, 800 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20591, Attention: Rules Docket #26493. Be sure to include the docket number (26493) in your letter.

Those with questions can reach Joe LaMountain at (800) 232-3472.

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