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MANILA, Philippines – Holders of drivers’ licenses that are valid for either five or ten years will no longer be obligated to undergo periodic medical examinations, effective starting Monday, April 16, according to the Land Transportation Office (LTO).
“There’s no empirical data saying that the periodic medical examination could prevent road crashes,” LTO chief Jose Arturo “Jay Art” Tugade said in a statement announcing the amendment.
Under the previous guidelines, those issued with a 5-year driver’s license must undergo a periodic medical examination within their third birthdate since the license was issued. Those with a 10-year driver’s license must be checked up on the fourth and seventh birthdate since the license was issued. These medical clearances are on top of the regular examinations required during the application or renewal processes of driver’s licenses.
Under the amended guidelines, medical examinations will only be required during the application of a new driver’s license and the renewal of an existing license.
Those who will be issued a 5-year or 10-year license need to undergo the medical examination sixty days before or on the specified renewal date.
Those who are working or living abroad must be checked up within 30 days upon their arrival in the Philippines before they may be permitted to drive in the country.
Tugade emphasized that removing the requirement will alleviate the time and financial burden of complying with the periodic medical tests.
“Kami sa LTO ay naniniwala na ang hakbang na ito ay magdudulot ng bahagyang ginhawa sa publiko dahil bukod sa hindi na sila kailangang gumastos ng paulit-ulit para sa medical examinations, maiiwasan din ang dagdag-abala, lalo na sa mga mahahalaga ang oras para sa trabaho. Nasa pagkukusa na lang ngayon ng bawat indibidwal kung nanaisin nilang sumalang sa medical examination,” Tugade said.
(We at LTO believe that this measure will be a relief for the public because aside from saving on the costs for repeated medical examinations, they will also be relieved of the hassle, especially for those who need the time for work. It’s up to each person whether they wish to undergo medical examinations or not.)
Tugade announced intentions to scrap the requirement on Sunday, April 16, citing “various studies, data collected, and consultations that the agency conducted.” The new guidelines were signed on Friday, April 14, and published on Monday. – Rappler.com