Psychiatric disorders, psycho-active medication and inappropriate use of psychoactive substances are a common and significant concern to aviation medicine and -safety.
However, not all mental health or psychiatric disorders represent a contraindication to performing aviation duties. Mood Disorders, in particular, may be compatible with aviation medical fitness if the fitness criteria of the Mood Disorder Protocol are met.
To this end, appropriate Psychiatric and Psychological reports may be required, or requested, as part of the Aviation Medical Fitness Assessment, Aviation Medical Panel Assessments or in Medical Appeal cases. The circular letter from South African Civil Aviation Authority regarding the requirements for applicants for Aviation Personnel who may qualify for an Aviation Medical Waiver on the Mood Disorder Protocol is available through this link:
Note that, as specified under the criteria of the Mood Disorder Protocol, the following Medication may no longer be considered incompatible to aviation medical fitness - if used a single medication, with complete control of Mood Disorder symptoms (as confirmed by a written Psychiatrist & Psychologist's Report) for at least 4 weeks, and without medication side-effects:
The outcome of the application remains subject to approval by the Aviation Medical Committee of the South African Civil Aviation Authority
Dr. Frans J. Cronjé
MBChB (UP), MSc
Senior Aviation Medical Examiner Diving Medical Examiner