HR Pulse




Menu Style

Home Day-to-day Issues Employee Wellness Mental checks for pilot

Mental checks for pilot

With regards to a proposal that originated in the SA Aerospace Medical Association, a database accessible through the internet that would allow examiners to check on the mental health of pilots might one day red-flag individuals with psychological problems.
But aviation industry experts say that before this can happen regulations stipulating that pilots go through mental health evaluations as part of their medical check-ups must be put in place.  Most pilots are subjected to psychological assessments only when they are recruited or if they sustain an injury that might affect them emotionally or cognitively.

 But following the Germanwings airliner crash there has been a call for better ways of assessing the mental wellbeing of pilots.  In the aftermath of the Germanwings crash, it was revealed that co-pilot Andreas Lubitz had shown signs of mental illness during his training and career.  

The proposed database would prevent "doctor hopping" by pilots and give examiners a holistic view of their medical history.  There are obstacles to the introduction of mandatory mental health checks and psychometric testing.  Yet, there have been concerns in the past that cultural bias could disadvantage some race groups.