Medical Exam Process

All Interior wildland firefighters who perform arduous duties must complete a baseline medical qualification exam, with subsequent periodic exams every three years.

A wildland firefighter checks in to a mobile medical exam clinic. Photo by Holland Foshay, USFWS.

Types of Medical Exams

Wildland firefighters must complete medical exams throughout their career. The type of exam you need depends on whether you are newly hired or are a current firefighter who has previously completed an exam.

Baseline Exam (newly hired)

The initial comprehensive baseline exam is required for those newly hired into wildland firefighter positions with arduous duties. This in-person medical exam will be ordered for you by your human resource office or your unit's Fire Management Officer (FMO).

Periodic Exam (every 3 years)

The periodic medical exam is required every three years from the date of your last exam. It must be completed prior to participating in the annual work capacity test (known as the pack test). Your HR office or FMO will request this exam for you. If you are approaching 36 months since your last in-person exam, we recommend contacting them to ensure the process is initiated. 

Self-Certification (annual)

The annual self-certification is required each year between your in-person exams. The self-certification is completed in the Examinee Portal. Self-certification results can also be viewed by management using the Client Portal.

Physical Exam Process

Step 1: Schedule

Your HR office or FMO will request your baseline or periodic medical exam for you. Look for an exam request notification in your inbox. If you have not received one and are approaching 36 months since your last in-person exam, you may wish to contact them.

The contracted exam provider will schedule your appointment in your local area (within 50 miles in most cases) and notify you. In some remote areas where a provider is not readily available, mobile clinics providing on-site exams may be arranged by the Department.

Step 2: Documentation

You must be prepared to provide supporting documentation for any existing significant medical conditions. This documentation may be uploaded in the examinee portal prior to your appointment. Be sure to compile all required documentation well ahead of your exam. You may need to request some items from your doctor.

You must bring the following items to your exam:

  • A valid ID with your legal name
  • Documentation of any medical conditions not previously provided
  • Documentation of any medications you are taking
  • Information from your medical provider regarding procedures or surgeries that indicates you are fully recovered and can perform the essential functions of an arduous duty wildland firefighter

Step 3: Exam

The government pays for all baseline and periodic exams. You should not provide any personal insurance information.

Your appointment will include all basic components of a physical exam, such as blood pressure, hearing, and vision tests; heart and lung evaluation; and basic mobility and dexterity tests.

Step 4: Determination

A medical officer with occupational health expertise will review the results of your exam and prepare your determination letter.

The medical determination may recommend additional follow-up appointments or testing. If you receive a follow-up recommendation, it is your responsibility to schedule and pay for the service unless you obtain prior, specific authorization from your agency.

Approximately two weeks after your exam, you will receive your determination letter. It will provide one of the following qualification determinations:


No further action is needed with your medical exam at this time.

Contact the individual who ordered your exam for guidance about next steps.


Additional information is needed to complete your determination. The additional requirements should be identified in the letter.

To begin the process of addressing these additional requirements, submit the information from your letter directly to the contractor, Acuity-CHS, within 10 business days. Alternatively, you can submit the information through a wildland firefighter customer service representative at any time.

Not Qualified (Static & Stable)

Additional information may be required. Otherwise, you can ask to participate in the risk mitigation and waiver process. 

Not Qualified (Not Static & Stable)

Additional medical documentation can be submitted at any time for review to determine if your medical condition meets the standards for a static and stable determination.

Step 5: Self-Certification

Once you have completed the required medical qualification exam, you should self-certify using the Examinee Portal. Self-certification results can be viewed by management using the Client Portal.

Medical Exam Tracking System

In 2022, the Interior Department’s Wildland Fire Medical Standards Program transitioned to a new medical exam tracking system. The Acuity mLink platform provides enhanced security to protect personal information and health data.

After you receive notification of your exam request, if you need help registering a new account or navigating the system, contact Acuity-CHS at (888) 636-8619 or

Frequently Asked Questions

For more information, review our frequently asked questions for the Interior's Wildland Fire Medical Standards Program

For one-on-one technical assistance or questions, please contact us at

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