Medical fitness

Every seafarer on a Dutch flagged vessel must be medically fit. A certified medical examination is required. With respect to such medical examinations, a distinction is drawn between seafarers who are ¨STCW¨-crew (with a Certificate of Competence) and those who are not. For STCW-crew members, a further distinction is drawn between seafarers who perform lookout or watchkeeping duties and those who do not.

The various examinations can be divided into three categories:

  • STCW-crew in a post involving lookout or watchkeeping duties;
  • STCW-crew who are serving (or will serve) in a post not involving any lookout or watchkeeping duties and;
  • other seafarers.

The first 2 categories (the STCW-crew) need a comprehensive physical medical examination (so-called ¨keuring volledig¨), including eyesight and hearing. Other seafarers also require a medical examination, though less exhaustive with regard to eyesight and hearing.

Only doctors approved by the Minister of Infrastructure and Water Management may issue a Dutch seafarers’ medical certificate. Examining doctors overseas are also appointed. Seafarer medical certificates issued by other EU-member states or by Australia, Canada, Iceland, India, Liechtenstein, New Zealand, Norway, Ukraine, the United Kingdom, South Africa and Switzerland may be accepted. For information on foreign medical certificates please refer to the website of NSI. For a specimen of a seafarer medical certificate, see the link.

For authorised examining doctors overseas, see the link