|TCAA CONDUCTED SENSITIZATION WORKING GROUP MEETING TO AMEs ON MEDICAL STANDARDS|
Aviation Medical Examiners (AMEs) were apprised on their importance to aviation development in connection to International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) which requires each state to have AMEs and Aviation Medical Assessor (AMA) in place.
Mr. Hamza S. Johari, Director General TCAA, in his opening remarks to the first TCAA AME working group meeting organized by the Directorate of Safety Regulation, stressed on the powers entrusted to AMEs by the Authority, to examine various licence applicants for medical fitness in accordance with prescribed medical standards and finally to make a fit or unfit recommendation to the Authority.
The Authority is required by ICAO to have AMEs and AMA(s) holding different responsibilities. Their performance is subject to Audit and thus contributing to overall Authority performance pursuant to compliance of ICAO (Standards and Recommended Practices) SARPs
DG hamza said that, it is the duty of the AMA to make a final assessment of these applicants based on the reports presented by the AMEs.
He highlighted on the roles AMEs as gate keepers in a sense that, they are expected to selectively allow candidates who qualify the prescribed standards to enjoy the privileges of their licences.
He also underscored the close coordination and liaison between the Personnel Licensing section and Medical Office as paramount since the latter determines the medical fitness of various licence holders.
He reiterated the fact that these overly critical decisions take place behind AMEs closed doors, making AMEs heightened professionalism and integrity an indispensable matter.
He also highlighted the success of the Medical Certification system subject to honesty of an applicant as well as the AME. If the AME colludes with the applicant or fails to properly disclose material information on the form, or the results of the physical examination, the public and aviation is put at risk as is the applicant and the AME.
On his technical presentations, Dr. Alexander Mkwizu, TCAA - Aviation Medical Assessor pointed out the existing connection between a human being’s psychology and physiology in tandem with various aircraft systems in achieving flight safety. In this regard, it is crucial to make an error-free decision when it comes to selection of qualified licence applicants on medical standards basis.
Some of the cited Technical Guidance Materials discussed were, The Civil Aviation (Personnel) licensing Regulations, 2017 (Reg 144 to 185), Aviation Medicine related TCAA Orders and Circulars, TCAA Aviation Medicine Protocols, ICAO Annex 1 (chapter 6) and Manual of Civil Aviation Medicine etc.
Mentioning some of the achievements attained, DG Hamza added that the Authority has succeeded in employing a full time Medical Assessor in compliance to ICAO SARPs.
In collaboration with the Medical Assessor, TCAA has succeeded in Organization of Medical office within TCAA, increasing the number of AMEs from one in 2017 to 12 in 2021, advancement in Aviation Medical Certification Standards, establishing applicant’s medical database, periodic analysis of applicants’ medical conditions, enhancing AME Audit and oversight and facilitating familiarization flights, to mention a few.