May 17, 2024

Addressing health issues and seeking medical care can be unsettling for aviation professionals, which is one reason Columbia University Irving Medical Center is conducting a new survey of flight attendants. A key aim of the survey is to address an identified a gap in data on this segment of aviation personnel.

“This study seeks to determine the unique health preferences of flight attendants in the U.S., Canada and Mexico,” said Dr. William R. Hoffman, MD, affiliate professor of aviation at the University of North Dakota and neurology fellow at Columbia University Medical Center. “In the last few years, we’ve published several studies on the health behavior of U.S. and Canadian pilots that have informed important actions including the National Transportation Safety Board Round Table on Mental Health and the FAA Aviation Rulemaking Committee on Mental Health. Given the lack of data on flight attendants, we aim to study this population in hopes of supporting their needs and care.”

NBAA strongly encourages flight attendants to participate in this important study.

The survey takes shape as a one-time, anonymous questionnaire, which can be completed in about three minutes. It is open to flight attendants in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, with a goal of securing participation from 3,000 flight attendants. View the survey.

NBAA is an industry leader in fitness-for-duty initiatives, providing several resources to members. Association members are urged to include all aviation personnel in their fitness-for-duty initiatives and consider utilizing the NBAA Fitness for Duty Policy template as a starting point.

Mark Larsen, CAM, NBAA director for safety and flight operations, recently participated in the FAA’s Mental Health & Aviation Medical Clearances Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC), which published its recommendations report in April. While the ARC report focuses on pilots and air traffic controllers, data on flight attendants could lead to future recommendations to address barriers which prevent aviation personnel from seeking medical care.