Here is everything you need to know about HGV medical tests, which ensure drivers are fit to drive lorries.
The HGV medical test is a medical examination designed to ensure a driver is medically fit to drive a heavy goods vehicle.
With the safety of the driver and other road users at stake when the driver is behind the wheel of an HGV, it’s essential that every effort is made to ensure everyone’s safety.
A driver will have to undergo a medical exam before they are issued their first licence. Then every time they renew their licence, they will also have to pass a medical exam.
How long does the HGV medical last?
There is no set time period or time limit for the exam. It will generally take around 30-45 minutes to work through all the questions.
The form that your GP or private doctor needs to fill out is called a D4 – Medical Examination Report. You can take a look at the form on the government website here for yourself.
Do you have to take the HGV medical test to get a licence?
Yes, the HGV test is mandatory. If you want to be issued an HGV driving licence, along with passing the driving test, you also have to pass the medical exam.
You will also need to retake the exam every time you apply for your licence to be renewed. It’s worth noting that it’s not the doctor that will make the decision if you’ve passed not. They fill out the D4 and send it off to the DVLA to review.
HGV medical requirements: what to expect
First of all, if you have one of these medicals coming up don’t worry. It’s very routine, and if you’re in good general health, you shouldn’t have any problems.
There are then three main parts to the medical assessment:
The first part involves a discussion with your doctor about your general health. This is your chance to bring up anything that might be relevant and discuss anything that may not come up in the exam.
The second part, which is the first part of the written assessment, is a visual assessment.
Sometimes this part will need to be carried out by an optician or an optometrist. When booking in your test with your GP they’ll advise you if they can carry out this section.
It’s just a series of questions and tests to ensure your eyesight is up to par to be on the road.
The third part and the second section of the test is the medical assessment. The main subcategories covered are:
- Neurological disorders
- Psychiatric illness
- Substance misuse
- Sleep disorders
- Other medical conditions
If you’re wondering what medical conditions will cause you to fail the medical, it’s anything that compromises or impairs your ability to safely drive an HGV.
How much does the HGV medical cost?
The DVLA has not set a cost for the medical exam. Some GPs will charge a fee, due to the extended time it takes to carry out the exam.
This is something you need to discuss with your GP when booking your exam. It’s also something to discuss with your employer as they might have a policy in place to cover some or all of the fees.
Can I take the medical before My HGV Driving Licence?
Yes, you can take the medical exam before passing your HGV driving test.
When you pass the medical, you’re given a D4 medical certificate. You then have four months to pass your driving test, otherwise, you will have to take it again.