Seafarer medical certificates

1. Overview

You must have an ENG 1 or an ML5 seafarer medical fitness certificate to work at sea.

Get an ENG 1 certificate

You need an ENG 1 certificate if you’re any of the following:

  • a seafarer
  • in charge of a ship
  • serving on a merchant ship or yacht

The maximum fee for an ENG 1 medical examination is £80.

How to apply

An ENG 1 certificate must be issued by a doctor approved by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA).

Find your nearest approved doctor in the UK.

Companies can find company-approved doctors approved to carry out ENG 1 medical examinations for specific shipping companies.

Approved doctor lists are updated monthly.

Bring the following to your examination:

  • photo ID, eg passport
  • your previous medical certificate if you have one
  • your local doctor’s name, address and contact details
  • any medication you’re taking
  • your glasses or contact lenses but not colour correction lenses

The doctor will give you an ENG 1 certificate if you pass the examination.

Some seafarer medical certificates from other countries are accepted instead of an ENG 1 form.

Get an ML5 certificate

You need an ML5 medical certificate if you’re:

  • the master of a passenger ship that doesn’t go to sea (Class IV or V)
  • the master of a commercial vessel that doesn’t go to sea
  • the master or a crew member of a small commercial vessel certificated for Area Category 2 to 6 (no more than 60 miles from a safe haven)
  • a crew member or anyone else (eg catering staff) who normally works on a domestic passenger ship (Class VI or VIA) that goes to sea

Read the guidance about medical fitness requirements if you work on domestic vessels and small commercial vessels.

There isn’t a set fee for an ML5 certificate but your doctor will probably charge for this service.

How to apply

Download the ML5 application form and ask your doctor to complete it.


2. Suspended, cancelled or expired certificates

Your medical certificate can be suspended or cancelled if:

  • there’s a major change in your fitness
  • you don’t follow the terms of your certificate
  • the doctor who gave you the certificate didn’t have full details of your condition at the examination

You must have a valid medical fitness certificate and produce this on demand to the right authorities.

Expired certificates

You can continue to work for a limited amount of time if your medical certificate expires during a voyage.

You can work until the next port of call where you’re able to replace your certificate or for up to 3 months from the date your certificate expires, whichever is sooner.


Author: MixoBiz

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