Physician knowledge, assessment, and reporting of older driver fitness

Occup Ther Health Care. 2011 Oct;25(4):213-24. doi: 10.3109/07380577.2011.607227.


ABSTRACT Physicians have the potential to serve as an important portal for information gathering, assessment, counseling, and reporting older driver fitness, as almost all older adults require medical care and have a primary care physician. However, there are few studies that have evaluated physician knowledge about, attitudes toward, and performance of older driver fitness assessment. Two pilot studies were conducted to assess physician knowledge and attitudes and aid understanding of physician knowledge of legal reporting requirements regarding older driver medical fitness. Results suggest that although physicians believe that patients should be evaluated for safe driving, many physicians do not routinely assess fitness to drive and few feel qualified to do so. It also appears that physicians may not be adequately knowledgeable about laws about reporting unsafe drivers. Thus, occupational therapy practitioners have an opportunity to educate about driving as a complex instrumental activity of daily living.