Epworth was the first rehabilitative facility in Australia to begin occupational therapy driver assessment and rehabilitation.
After an injury or illness, physical and cognitive issues may affect your ability to drive safely.
Along with physical difficulties of driving, you might:
- Have difficulty judging speed and distance
- Have potential vision difficulties
- Have reduced concentration
- Have slowed reaction time
- Take in information more slowly.
License holders are legally required to report any medical condition affecting their driving.
The procedure for return to driving is as follows:
On a purpose-built simulator to assesses reaction times, vision, physical issues, observation skills and knowledge of road laws. The simulator can also help people practice driving using assisted tools if required.
Following successful completion of the off-road component, an on-road assessment is conducted in a dual-control car, with a driving instructor and occupational therapist qualified in assessing the effects of injury on driving.
Two on-road drives are often completed in various traffic conditions. Previous driving experience is considered and driving lessons may be required prior to a return to driving.
If the on-road component is successful, a medical report and the occupational therapist's driving report are sent to VicRoads, notifying them of the medical condition and meeting legal requirements.
People should not drive prior to taking part in this procedure, as insurance companies will not provide cover if it is known that the client was suffering from a condition that affected their ability to drive.