Psychiatric Evaluations

Item 47: Specifications for FAA Workup

Apr 2014

Guidance is compiled and interpreted by professional pilots and physicians at from the 2014 AME Guide pages 224-225, FAA and FDA web data ( &, instructions specified in the Aeronautical Information Manual, Federal Air Surgeon Bulletins from 1999-2015, and 14 CFR Part 61 and Part 67 (the FARs).

Background: Psychiatric Evaluation - FAA Requirements

Mental disorders, as well as the medications used for treatment, may produce symptoms or behavior that would make an airman unsafe to perform pilot duties, various conditions listed in the AME Guide require Psychiatric Evaluations. This guideline outlines the requirements for FAA-required psychiatric evaluations.

Providing Medical Records

You should make records available to the psychiatrist prior to their evaluations, to include:

  • Copies of all records regarding prior psychiatric/substance-related hospitalizations, observations or treatment not previously submitted to the FAA.
  • A complete copy of your agency medical records. You should request a copy of your agency records be sent directly to the psychiatrist and psychologist by the Aerospace Medical Certification Division (AMCD) in Oklahoma City, OK. For further information regarding this process, please call (405) 954-4821, select option '4' (for duplicate medical certificate or copies of medical records), then '3' (for certified copies of medical records).

The Psychiatric Evaluation

Who Performs FAA Psychiatric Evaluation

Airman Psychiatric evaluations must be conducted by a qualified psychiatrist who is board-certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology or the American Board of Osteopathic Neurology and Psychiatry.

  • We strongly advise using a psychiatrist with experience in aerospace psychiatry and/or familiarity with aviation standards. Using a psychiatrist without this background may limit the usefulness of the report.
  • If we have specified that additional qualifications in addiction psychiatry or forensic psychiatry are required, please ensure that the psychiatrist is aware of these requirements and has the qualifications and experience to conduct the evaluation.

Components of the FAA Psychiatric Evaluation Report

At a minimum:

  • A review of all available records, including academic records, records of prior psychiatric hospitalizations, and records of periods of observation or treatment (e.g., psychiatrist, psychologist, social worker, counselor, or neuropsychologist treatment notes). Records must be in sufficient detail to permit a clear evaluation of the nature and extent of any previous mental disorders.
  • A thorough clinical interview to include a detailed history regarding: psychosocial or developmental problems; academic and employment performance; legal issues; substance use/abuse (including treatment and quality of recovery); aviation background and experience; medical conditions, and all medication used; and behavioral observations during the interview.
  • A mental status examination.
  • An integrated summary of findings with an explicit diagnostic statement, and the psychiatrist's opinion(s) and recommendation(s) for treatment, medication, therapy, counseling, rehabilitation, or monitoring should be explicitly stated. Opinions regarding clinically or aeromedically significant findings and the potential impact on aviation safety must be consistent with the Federal Aviation Regulations.

What is Submitted to the FAA from the Psychiatrist

The FAA requires psychiatrist's comprehensive and detailed report, as noted above, plus copies of supporting documentation. Recommendations should be strictly limited to the psychiatrist's area of expertise. Psychiatrists with questions are encouraged to call Charles Chesanow, D.O., FAA Chief Psychiatrist, at (202) 267-3767.

This page discussed Psychiatric Evaluations

Reminder: use to familiarize yourself with aviation medical regulations and guidelines, but always discuss your specific situation with one or more AMEs before dedicating resources toward expensive clinical workups. Find an AME now