KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 13 — Lorry drivers with diabetes or high blood pressure can get their driving licence renewed if they undergo treatment, Transport Minister Anthony Loke said today.
“If a doctor declares them as fit, their licence will be renewed,” Loke was quoted saying in reply to a supplementary question by Baling MP Abdul Azeez Abdul Rahim (BN-Baling), according to The Star.
“It doesn’t mean that just because they have diabetes or high blood pressure they can no longer drive.”
Abdul Azeez had criticised the medical tests required for the renewal of lorry drivers’ driving licence, after about 500 lorry drivers held a protest at the Transport Ministry last month.
“If the lorry driver is unfit or has a bad (driving) record, we need to take action. We always look for ways to help them but at the same time, the safety of people on the road is a collective responsibility,” Loke was quoted saying.
The Health Ministry recently introduced a new stringent medical exam, with a nine-page form, for e-hailing and lorry drivers.
The Medical Practitioners Coalition Association of Malaysia (MPCAM) recently told CodeBlue that under the new health test, commercial drivers must see a specialist if they have hypertension, heart disease, or diabetes and get a clean bill of health before their driving licence applications can be approved.
The Road Transport Department (JPJ), however, recently reverted to the previous one-page template of the medical exam form, JPJL8, for annual renewal of the vocational driving licence, while using the new JPJL8A nine-page form guiding medical check-ups only for new applications of the licence.
The format of medical exams for commercial drivers remains uncertain as both the Health and Transport Ministries have shifted responsibility to each other.