Podcast: Mental Wellness and Business Aviation, Part 1

Oct. 30, 2023

Mental wellness continues to be a common, if uncomfortable, subject throughout the nation’s aviation community. In the first of a two-part series, experts share their perspectives about where the business aviation community stands on mental wellness matters, and what pilots might expect if they disclose a concern such as anxiety or depression to their aviation medical examiner. “In the past, it was very much not a thing that you wanted to talk about — mental health issues — when it came to the FAA,” notes aerospace medicine physician Dr. Greg Vanichkachorn. “What we have [now] seen with the FAA, with their language, as well as their policy changes, is that, indeed, they are starting to realize that pilots are human.”
In this episode of NBAA’s “Flight Plan,” host Rob Finfrock speaks with:
  • Dr. Clayton Cowl, prior chair of the Division of Public Health, Infectious Disease and Occupational Medicine at Mayo Clinic, and a 20-year aviation medical examiner
  • Mark Larsen, NBAA’s director of safety and flight operations
  • Lee Rafalko, scheduling and finance manager for Corteva Agriscience and chair of the Fitness for Duty Working Group of the NBAA Safety Committee
  • Dr. Greg Vanichkachorn, aerospace medicine physician and section chief for transportation medicine at Mayo Clinic

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