Pilots with Diabetes
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Where is it Possible to Fly Commercially?

At this time pilots with insulin treated diabetes in Canada, UK, Ireland, Austria and Poland can fly multi-crew operations. Kuwait also allows commercial flying - specific details are currently being sought. The USA FAA recently announced policy to enable commercial flying with no operational multi-crew restriction.

Canada's system was introduced in 2002 and the UK's system was introduced in August 2012 followed by Ireland in 2015 and Austria and Poland after this.

In all countries it is possible to return to commercial flying if diagnosis occurs while employed in commercial operations (or a commercial licence and Class 1 Medical has been held before) once stabilized diabetes control can be demonstrated.

In Canada a new ruling introduced in 2019 enables "ab initio" pilots to train for a commercial pilotís licence and commercial flying career. The USA has no restriction requiring applicants to have flown commercially before diagnosis of diabetes.

At this time a person wishing to enter a commercial flying career using the UK, Ireland, Austria and Poland systems with no previous Class 1 Medical or Commercial Licence, it is not possible to gain a Class 1 Medical. It is hoped that this restrictive policy will be changed by the UK soon and followed by the other European countries.

Where is it Possible to Fly in the Military?

It is understood that it is possible to fly in Canadaís military on a similar basis to commercial flying i.e. after diagnosis for existing military pilots it may be possible to return to multi-crew flying duties exists after stabilization and minimum blood sugar control criteria are met. It is also understood that it is possible to fly in the Israeli military, for both multi-crew and single-crew combat duties (to be confirmed).




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