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In July 2018, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) issued Regulation (EU) 2018/1042, now (EU) 2020/745, which requires all Commercial Air Transport (CAT) operators to implement a Support Programme (SP) by 14 February 2021.

Why is Support Programme being introduced?

There have been a number of events in aviation that indicated that more attention needs to be given to the mental wellbeing of flight crew. Building on this requirement, EASA formed a Task Force to explore the safety concerns related to flight crew wellbeing and made recommendations for all CAT operators to provide pilot support and a reporting system concerning psychological wellbeing. A key component of this system is the implantation of a Support Programme for entire flight crew, designed to inform and educate flight crew on their wellbeing and health.

So what is expected from the CAT operators under the Support Programme?

The regulation defines a support programme as a proactive initiative designed for a flight crew to help them overcome any problems which might negatively affect their ability to exercise their licence safely. The operator must ensure the confidentiality to encourage the use of programme and honesty of those who need to use it.

Who needs to be involved?

An effective SP requires the involvement of operators’ senior management, mental health professionals and trained peer volunteers to facilitate referral, advice, counselling and treatment where necessary. The concept of peer volunteers is a key element within the SP. Access to peers provides an opportunity for crew members to contact someone who understands their working environment and the challenges that they face on a day-to-day basis. Trained peers can support their fellow flight crew colleagues who need help with their concerns.

Peer volunteers must be independent of management, but it is essential that they have access to medical or clinical help for their wellbeing or if they need an assistance with more complex cases.

Pilot Peer Training

If you are unsure what the upcoming changes will mean for you and your organisation, we have introduced a three-day Pilot Peer Training course, preparing delegates for the Support Programme defined under the latest Regulation (EU) 2020/745. The course will provide delegates with skills, knowledge and behaviours, as a Peer, to become confident to provide Pilot Peer assistance to the flight crew as part of a CAT operators’ Support Programme. Delegates will also receive an overview of the regulatory requirements for Support Programme and guidance on the use of trained peers.

Get in touch

For more information and advice about the implementation of Support Programme under Regulation (EU) 2020/745, please email international@caa.co.uk or download our free Support Programme Guide below.

For details on our Pilot Peer Training, please contact our training team: +44 (0) 330 0224401; training@caainternational.com.

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In July 2018, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) issued Regulation (EU) 2018/1042, now (EU) 2020/745, which requires all Commercial Air Transport (CAT) operators to implement a Support Programme (SP), which should include…
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