What is a DOT Exam?

Many professional/commercial drivers are required to get physicals on a regular basis.  A Department of Transportation (DOT) physical exam is the evaluation required in order to operate a commercial vehicle. It is referred to as a “medical fitness for duty” examination, which ensures that each driver is capable and healthy enough to successfully complete the duties associated with commercial driving.

Our certified practitioners make it easy for commercial drivers to fulfill (DOT) regulatory requirements. A DOT physical can only be completed by a medical examiner certified by the FMCSA. Only medical professionals who are listed on the FMCSA National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners can issue your certificate. Your exam with Emerge Natural Health Care will meet DOT and FMSCA requirements- https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov

To schedule your DOT physical exam call (360) 787-3615.

Be Prepared

  1. Bring in a list of your medications with dosages, medical records, a full bladder to provide a sample for urinalysis, and your eyeglasses and hearing aids if you use them.
  2. Bring the DOT Medical Examination Report with Driver Information and Health History sections completed. If you don’t have the examination report please come in at least 15 minutes early to complete the necessary forms.
  3. Take your prescribed medications as usual.
  4. Avoid things that can raise your blood pressure. Give yourself plenty of time to arrive early and no caffeine the day of your exam.
  5. Avoid a big meal before the exam, something small and light will serve you better.

If you have a specific medical condition like diabetes or heart related issues please bring in your medical records documenting compliance with treatment and any letters from doctors saying you are good to go.

What To Expect

The physical exam is non-invasive and will take approximately 30 minutes, depending on your medical history. The exam is comprehensive and will include an assessment of the following:

  1. Height, weight and general appearance.
  2. Hearing and ears: The whisper test (from 5 ft. away you must be able to hear a whisper in at least one ear) will be done and we will take a look in your ears.
  3. Eyes and Vision: You must have at least 20/40 vision in each eye with or without glasses or contacts and you must have at least 70 degrees of peripheral vision on the horizontal line.
  4. Urinalysis:  Protein, glucose, blood and specific gravity will be measured.
  5. Blood pressure and cardiovascular system:  Your blood pressure, heart rate and regularity will be checked and your heart will be listened to.
  6. Mouth and throat will be checked for any abnormalities.
  7. An examination of your abdomen.
  8. Listening to your lungs.
  9. A neurological exam:  Checking memory, cognition, reflexes and balance.
  10. Hernia check.
  11. Musculoskeletal:  Strength, flexibility and range of motion checks will be done on your spine and limbs.

After the Exam

If you pass the exam you will be issued a medical exam certificate.  Our office will also forward the medical certificate to whomever you request.  Most medical certificates are good for two years. However, certain conditions may inhibit your ability to drive and you may receive a certificate only good for 3 months up to 1 year. For example, if you have very high blood pressure, you may receive a 3-month certificate. After 3 months, if you show improvement in your blood pressure, you’ll be able to get your 1 year certificate.  Our doctors will go over these issues with you if necessary.

If you fail the exam, it does not necessarily mean you can’t become a driver or continue driving. Our practitioners will talk with you about why you failed, and there may be ways to treat your condition so you can try again. There are also driver exemption programs through the FMCSA for some people with diabetes, impaired vision or hearing, or other disabilities.

Insurance is not accepted for DOT physical exams and payment is due at the time of visit. We do accept insurance for other services.


  • $95 for exam
  • $30 for urine collection for DOT drug screening

To schedule your exam call (360) 787-3615.