The National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners (NRCME) examination is the final step for medical providers seeking to become certified Medical Examiners in the DOT/FMCSA NRCME program. Once certified, a medical provider can perform commercial driver license (CDL) examinations on commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers in all the states the provider is licensed to practice in for a period of 10-years. Re-certification is required 10-years from the original certification date.
Candidates eligible to sit for the national exam to become certified Medical Examiners include MD, DO, DC, APN, APRN, NP and PA medical providers. All candidates must complete an accredited training program first, which will afford them a Certificate of Completion. Candidates can then apply for an account with the DOT/FMCSA and will be assigned a 10-digit National Registry number once they have been verified by the DOT. The exam is administered in person and by appointment through Prometric and PSI testing companies, which have locations nationwide and offer Saturday morning testing in most locations. Comira, which is listed on the FMCSA website as a testing company, was acquired by PSI in late 2016. The cost of the exam is $80 and can be scheduled online by candidates using their 10-digit National Registry number issued to them by the DOT. Candidates must bring their Certificate of Completion with them the day they sit for the exam, in addition to presenting a valid state-issued photo ID and a copy of their current medical license.
The 2-hour NRCME exam consists of 120 questions, where 20 questions are pilot questions that are not graded, and the candidate will not know which test questions are the pilot questions and which questions are the actual test questions. Of the remaining 100 questions, 60-70% are from the outline specified by the NRCME and must be followed by all training courses. The remaining 30-40% are clinical questions that test the user's general medical knowledge, as well as testing the user's understanding of the unique role of the medical examiner in contrast to the role of treatment providers. The exam is closed book and administered on a computer. Candidates will be notified of their exam score upon completion and must achieve a 71% to pass. The DOT will email providers their final certificate once they have received the passing score from the testing company, which can take up to 3 weeks.
Medical providers who do not pass their NRCME national exam no longer have to wait 30 days to reschedule. This applies to both initial certification and 10-year recertification. As soon as the FMCSA receives the failing notice from the testing company, they will update the provider's FMCSA account, a process that may take up to 7 days. Once the update is complete, the provider can promptly reschedule their next exam. For more information, please contact the FMCSA directly at FMCTECHSUP@dot.gov or by phone at (617) 494-3003.
An excerpt from our course "Preparing for and Passing the National Certification Examination":
Blog entry discussing Hypertension on the exam:
Blog entry discussing Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy on the exam: