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Depression in the Merchant Navy - ENG1

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  • Depression in the Merchant Navy - ENG1

    I am joining a company that drug tests frequently. Is it possible to keep medication such as for depression private, or will it come out in the test?

    Does it affect the Eng 1? I am usually fine and can survive without medication. If I stop taking it then i can cope fine and i am not currently taking It.

    I feel like there may be a stigma attached to it. The company may not trust someone fully to be in charge of a ship if they know they are on such medication.

  • #2
    First of all, a disclaimer: we're not MCA approved doctors so please don't rely on anything said here.

    You need to declare all of your medical history when you go for your ENG1. The MCA medical guidelines ( have a flow-chart for mental health problems and you can get some indication of how it might go from that. It's not an instant fail, and depending on severity you may be absolutely fine.

    All you can do is go for the medical and see.
    Hello! I'm Chris. I'm away a lot so I'm sorry if it takes me a while to reply to messages, but I promise I'll get back to everyone. If it's urgent, please email me directly at [email protected].

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    • #3
      Something like depression will raise a few concerns with doctors, that much is a guarantee.

      They may want to refer you or go through your history to see the extent and length of time you've been on the happy pills, but as CD says depending on the severity you may be ok you may not.

      At the end of the day, the last thing you want is to go out on a ship, run out of happy pills and then go through the full plethora that comes with depression....
      I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.....

      All posts here represent my own opinion and not that of my employer.


      • #4
        The only piece of advice to take from this is don't take any advice from on here. I appreciate you are concerned and want some info anonymously but no doubt someone will come bungling in and spout nonsense.

        As CD said approach an ENG1 doctor and explain your situation and they will be able to help as they are the ones that know the requirements. Good luck.


        • #5
          Totally agree with IFHP, be honest and declare it and you may find that you'll need to declare it to your company as it could possible affect drug tests, but again take professional medical advice on that.


          • #6
            yup be honest with the doctor, you sound like you are pretty ok and it ought to be ok, THE biggest issue I forsee is if you ARE on meds and on a ship, traveling abroad with perscription meds is not an issue BUT some countries have differing views on this sort of thing, assuming joining in EU/UK then it's no problem but the captain will need to declare them as being on board etc. So at the very least the old man will need to know.

            This goes pretty much for any prescribed meds though not just for depression.

            As for the drug testing, you tell them when that take the sample what it is you are taking or have taken in the past xx period, this so they dont have any suprises when they runt he test
            Trust me I'm a Chief.

            Views expressed by me are mine and mine alone.
            Yes I work for the big blue canoe company.
            No I do not report things from here to them as they are quite able to come and read this stuff for themselves.

            Twitter:- @DeeChief


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