Do I Need an HGV/PSV Medical to Drive in the UK?

What is HGV/PSV Medical Test?

Heavy goods vehicle (HGV) or public service vehicle (PSV) medical test is a medical assessment performed to make sure the drivers are medically fit to drive heavy goods vehicles such as lorries and buses to ensure the safety of the public on the road or the passengers.

The driver is expected to undergo a medical examination before getting the first license issued and also before renewing the driving licence.

Why do I need an HGV/PSV driver’s medical?

It is fundamental to be medically fit to drive heavy-duty vehicles like lorries, buses, or other heavy public or private vehicles as per the law.

Medical is mandatory for everyone who is entitled to drive the vehicles of their preference, be it for personal use or professional. Whether the driver drives a 40-tonne lorry or a 55-seater bus, the driver has to be medically fit to take the responsibility.

Close up of white bus with opened doors

How often should I get a medical for an HGV/PCV drivers?

If you are applying for the license for the first time, you will have to mandatorily get the medical. The medical is valid until the driver is 45 years old and would require a renewed medical test every five years until the age of 65 after which medical assessments become an annual check.

In other cases, if you develop a change in your medical conditions that affects your fitness to drive safely, you must report to the DVLA. Failing to which, you could end up paying the fine or the severity could be worse if you involve in a road accident.

What is the difference between an HGV medical and PSV medical?

Nothing! The medical assessment conducted is the same for any category of heavy vehicles. However, it is for the best that the driver can check the ‘C’ and ‘D’ categories on the D2 driver license application form. This enables the driver to have both the entitlements if at all he ever finds the need in the future.

How long does the HGV/PSV medical last?

This is not set in a specific time limit. The test usually takes 30-45 minutes to get through all the given questions.  

Your GP or doctor will fill out the D4 for Group 2 – medical examination report for you upon successful tests to state you are medically fit to drive.

Cargo truck

Is it mandatory to take the HGV/PSV medical test to get a license?

Yes. The HGV/PSV test is a must. Passing a driving test is not enough to get a license. You should also pass the medical test if you want to get an HGV/PSV license.

In case of license renewal, you will have to retake the medical assessment to ensure your medical condition is good. 

 The doctor would fill out the D4 form that describes your medical fitness and forward it to the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) to review.

What can I expect during an HGC/PSV medical?

It is a general health check-up to assess your medical condition.

The test is carried out in 3 parts:

Discussion with the doctor – This session involves a general discussion about your medical history with the doctor to determine your capability to drive a heavy vehicle safely. You can discuss any concerns related to health with the doctor for clarity.

Visual assessment – This session includes a written test carried out by an optometrist to ensure your eyesight is not compromised and is up to the eyesight standards to be on the road. The test might include a series of visual questions and you answer them accordingly. 

 If you already have compromised eyesight or wear glasses, the examination will be carried out as per your current prescription.

Medical assessment – This round of tests is dependent on the pre-existing health condition of a person that includes a complete health check-up, including:  

  • Basic cardiac test
  • Auditory (hearing) test
  • Diabetes test
  • Neurological test
  • Substance misuse test
  • Movement test including muscle power and control

These are the major tests carried out to know your medical condition to know if it impairs your ability to safely drive on the road.

The GP or doctor will need to fill out the medical report section of the D4 DVLA form and forward the same to DVLA.

How much does the HGV/PSV medical cost?

There is no set fee for the medical by the DVLA. It depends on the GP and your medical condition. 

 If you are employed by your employer, you can discuss the same with them as most employers have a policy that covers partial or complete medical assessment fees.

Is it possible to take the medical before getting my HGV/PSV driver’s license?

Yes. There is no restriction for getting the medical test done before passing the HGV/PSV driving test.

However, the D4 medical certificate issued upon successful completion of your is only valid for four months. This means you will have to clear your driving test before the D4 certificate expires, or you will have to undergo the medical test again.

What document do I carry for a medical?

  • Photo identity proof
  • Glasses or contact lenses (if applicable) as per the current prescription
  • Records of any pre-existing medical conditions and medications prescribed for the same
  • D4 – medical examination form

The above-mentioned list is required for the completion of the medical.

At Barnetby Private Medicals, we specialise in providing medicals for various services. For further details, get in touch with us today.