Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Healthcare professionals failing to tell patients they are not fit to drive, UK study finds

Date:
January 20, 2010
Source:
University of Warwick
Summary:
Many healthcare professionals are failing to advise people with medical conditions that could affect their ability to drive whether they should get behind the wheel, according to research from the UK.

Many healthcare professionals are failing to advise people with medical conditions that could affect their ability to drive whether they should get behind the wheel, according to research from the University of Warwick.

Related Articles


Researchers from the University's Warwick Medical School have found many healthcare professionals are failing to tell patients with certain conditions such as diabetes or visual impairment if they are not fit to drive.

In a study undertaken for the Department for Transport, the research team explored the knowledge and attitudes of healthcare professionals towards advising patients about their fitness to drive. The researchers recruited 1519 health professionals, 358 patients and 55 medical school personnel to the study.

The research team, led by Dr Carol Hawley, Principal Research Fellow at Warwick Medical School, found doctors in training received little tuition on medical aspects of fitness to drive.

They also found that although most healthcare professionals were aware of the Driving and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) guidelines stipulating fitness to drive, many were unable to reliably distinguish between medically unfit drivers, borderline drivers and fit drivers. When presented with paper case studies of patients only 7.5% scored all of them correctly.

When presented with an acted scenario of a patient who was unfit to drive, 75% of healthcare professionals failed to offer advice on driving. The results also showed 40% of healthcare professionals agreed they did not have sufficient knowledge of the DVLA Fitness to Drive guidelines.

As part of the current DVLA licensing system there is a legal obligation on individuals to declare the onset or worsening of any medical condition that may affect their fitness to drive. This requirement is publicised on driving licence application forms and in accompanying information leaflets.

Advice for the public on the medical standards of fitness to drive is published by DVLA in a booklet and made available on Direct.gov.uk.

For medical professionals, the DVLA helped to develop the General Medical Council's new guidance on patient confidentiality and reporting medical conditions to the DVLA. There are also various projects in development such as E learning for junior doctors and the DVLA is working with the Department of Health to develop a learning module on medical conditions and driver licensing awareness.

Dr Hawley's research has been published as a main report, along with nine sub-reports, by the Department for Transport.

She said: "Although the information is there and results suggest healthcare professionals are aware of the DVLA fitness to drive guidelines, they had a poor knowledge of how the guidelines applied to specific conditions.

"There is also uncertainty about which groups of healthcare professionals are responsible for informing a patient about how their condition can affect their ability to drive. Interviews with patients revealed that only one third of them had been advised about their fitness to drive without having to ask for advice."

Dr Hawley said the DVLA had already taken steps to ensure more widespread knowledge and implication of the current guidelines for the public and healthcare professionals. However, she added they may need to be simplified to make them more user-friendly and more training was needed for healthcare professionals and medical students.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Warwick. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Warwick. "Healthcare professionals failing to tell patients they are not fit to drive, UK study finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 January 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/01/100115204658.htm>.
University of Warwick. (2010, January 20). Healthcare professionals failing to tell patients they are not fit to drive, UK study finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 1, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/01/100115204658.htm
University of Warwick. "Healthcare professionals failing to tell patients they are not fit to drive, UK study finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/01/100115204658.htm (accessed April 1, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Wound-Healing Laser Soon to Be a Reality Israeli Scientist

Wound-Healing Laser Soon to Be a Reality Israeli Scientist

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Apr. 1, 2015) Israeli scientists says laser bonding of tissue allows much faster healing and less scarring. Amy Pollock has more. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Liberia Sees Resurgence of Drug Trafficking as Ebola Wanes

Liberia Sees Resurgence of Drug Trafficking as Ebola Wanes

AFP (Apr. 1, 2015) The governments of Liberia and Sierra Leone have been busy fighting the menace created by the deadly Ebola virus, but illicit drug lords have taken advantage of the situation to advance the drug trade. Duration: 01:12 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stigma Stalks India's Leprosy Sufferers as Disease Returns

Stigma Stalks India's Leprosy Sufferers as Disease Returns

AFP (Apr. 1, 2015) The Indian government declared victory over leprosy in 2005, but the disease is making a comeback in some parts of the country, with more than a hundred thousand lepers still living in colonies, shunned from society. Duration: 02:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
7-Year-Old Girl Gets 3-D Printed 'robohand'

7-Year-Old Girl Gets 3-D Printed 'robohand'

AP (Mar. 31, 2015) Although she never had much interest in prosthetic limbs before, Faith Lennox couldn&apos;t wait to slip on her new robohand. The 7-year-old, who lost part of her left arm when she was a baby, grabbed it as soon as it came off a 3-D printer. (March 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins