Can student pilots qualify for and fly under basic med?
Yes, they can. But there is a caveat that goes along with that. Assume someone who has never touched the controls of an aircraft (fresh off the street, so to speak), walks into your school and wants to learn how to fly. You give them the usual spiel about times, costs, requirements, etc. This person cannot solo using basic med; rather, he or she must obtain a medical certificate (any class is fine) prior to solo. The reason is that since there is no established medical history with FAA, a brand new student pilot must first begin with a medical certificate.

Now, two years later, this 44-year-old student pilot is still plugging away at earning the private pilot certificate. The medical is about to expire. There are two options to continue:
  1. Obtain a new medical certificate or
  2. Qualify for and fly under basic med.

Since the student pilot successfully passed the first medical exam and held a medical for two years, the student is now qualified to fly under the privileges of basic med. He or she would need to take a physical with a state licensed doctor and then pass AOPA’s online medical self-assessment course. That is how a student pilot can qualify for and fly under basic med.

Obviously, a student pilot who starts and completes training in, say, a year, will likely do that entirely under the privileges of a medical certificate. That person does not need to think about basic med. Yet. For an in depth look at basic med, please see AOPA’s online guidance here -
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To cover down on Daddis's post and bring up another question/issue.

The actual regulation that allows a student pilot to fly under BasicMed is FAR 61.23(a)(3)(i) or FAR 61.23(c)(v):

FAR 61.23(a)(3)(i)

FAR 61.23(c)(v)

FAR 61.113(i) outlines the limitations applied to a flight under BasicMed and references the FAR 61.23(c)(3), which outlines the requirements for a pilot wanting to fly under BasicMed. You would need to be in compliance with both parts to operate under BasicMed.

Another issue that we come across are pilots/CFIs/DPEs thinking that a student pilot (or any applicant) can't take a practical test while utilizing BasicMed. That's just not true (as long as the flight and pilot are compliant with BasicMed). This is also covered under FAR 61.23, specifically 61.23(a)(3)(iii):