Thought I'd throw this out there as I hadn't heard of this new ICAO requirement until I saw it in an ALPA email. I'm glad the FAA let's us all know about these kinds of things in a widely distributed fashion. :whatever:
Attention SIA Letter Holders—New Requirement Following an ICAO audit of FAA practices as part of the harmonization efforts among the world aviation authorities, the FAA amended 14 CFR 67.401 (Special Issuance of Medical Certificates) in July 2008. Paragraph (j) now states that for a pilot who holds a special issuance authorization (SIA) letter, that letter “must be in that person’s physical possession or readily accessible in the aircraft.”
What does this mean to the thousands of pilots currently holding special issuances? The rule was implemented primarily to comply with ICAO standards. Pilots flying outside the United States may see stricter enforcement of the regulation by non-U.S. aviation officials. Pilots flying in the United States may be asked to produce their SIA letter (in addition to their current medical certificate and any Statement of Demonstrated Ability they hold) for an inspector, although this procedure historically has not been required.
Although FAA medical certificates do not include any diagnoses, the SIA letter lists in the first paragraph the specific diagnoses for which the airman does not meet certification standards, consequently raising privacy concerns. Although the policy was implemented by Flight Standards, the FAA Office of Aerospace Medicine shares these privacy concerns regarding this policy.