Course Name

Lighter Than Air Outreach Series - Medical Certification for Balloon Pilots

FAASafety Wings Course

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About this FAASafety Wings Course

With many balloon pilots planning their first ever medical exam with an FAA designated Aviation Medical Examiner (AME), this live presentation will walk you through the process. FAA medical certification subject matter experts will explain the process, steps to complete, and helpful tips. This program is designed to introduce pilots to medical certification who have not interacted with the FAA in this way previously. 

Questions are encouraged! However, please know that the FAA experts will not be able to address questions concerning your specific medical conditions on the webinar. The rule on medical certification for commercial balloon pilots is not final, therefore FAA experts may not be able to answer certain questions related to the balloon medicals NPRM.

Dr. Susan E. Northrup, M.D., MPH, is the Federal Air Surgeon for the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration. In this capacity, she leads the Office of Aerospace Medicine in Washington, D.C. She leads strategic management of the FAA's aviation medical programs, which oversee all pilots. Together with the Deputy Federal Air Surgeon, she shares responsibility for the direction and management of all FAA medical programs.

This includes the development and establishment of airman medical certification, the air traffic control specialist medical qualification policy, the application of that policy in medical decision making, the medical appeals process, and the oversight of aviation industry drug and alcohol testing programs. Dr. Northrup oversees the FAA's aeromedical education programs, the planning and conduct of aerospace medical and human factors research, and the investigation of aircraft accident medical factors.

Brad Zeigler has been a certificated pilot for more than 28 years and has logged more than 20 years in the aviation safety industry. He is presently with the FAA Flight Standards General Aviation and Commercial Division, focusing on issues related to airmen certification and training. He has worked extensively on policy and implementation of regulations for both drones and manned aircraft operations, and serves as the program lead for the BasicMed medical eligibility program. Brad holds Airline Transport Pilot, Remote Pilot and Flight Instructor Certificates. He is an active general aviation pilot and bases his Cessna 182 in the Washington DC area.

Dr. Leo Hattrup, M.D., FAA Medical Officer, received a bachelor’s degree from Wichita State University, a master’s in public health from Harvard University, and a doctorate from Vanderbilt University. He is retired from the U.S. Air Force in which he spent the majority of his career in aerospace medicine. He is board certified in aerospace and occupational medicine. He is a certificated flight instructor and enjoys flying airplanes, helicopters, and gliders. 


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  • Webinar Recording Lighter Than Air Series - Medical Certification Enroll
  • Lighter Than Air Series - Quiz Enroll