The ability to drive is a vital skill that enables people to be independent and participate in social, employment or vocational activities. If you suffer an injury or become diagnosed with an illness or disability, you may need to undergo an Occupational Therapy (OT) driving assessment to check your fitness to drive.
At Modified Driving Solutions, we have qualified Driver Trained OTs who can assess your driving capacity and help you return to driving. We are also NDIS registered and can help NDIS participants who have goals of beginning to drive. We cover the Manly area and surrounding suburbs (Northern Beaches). We have flexible hours and can often accommodate weekend appointments.
Do I need an OT driving assessment?
If you have a medical condition or have endured a recent injury, it is primarily up to your Doctor/Specialist to decide whether you should continue to drive. You and your doctor also have the responsibility to inform the RMS of any medical conditions that could impact on your driving. Your doctor must complete the RMS ‘Fitness to Drive’ form, where he/she will decide if you need an OT driving assessment. It is also important to note that if you have a medical diagnosis that potentially affects your driving capacity, it is your responsibility to declare this to the RMS.
How can a driving assessment help me?
The primary purpose of the OT driving assessment is to observe your current level of driving skill and appraise what supports you need to drive safely. An assessment can help to:
Develop a rehabilitation schedule (with a driving instructor) catered to your personal needs and situation
Provide education (including driving lessons) to rectify any errors or issues detected in the assessment
Complete assessments for vehicle modifications or other equipment (e.g. hoists)
Perform a driving assessment for insurance reasons
Perform a driving assessment for various licence types (car or truck, manual/automatic)
Help new/learner drivers build the skills and confidence to obtain their provisional licence
What is involved in the assessment?
Once your Doctor has decided that you are suitable to undergo an OT driving assessment, you can contact us. We service the Manly area and the surrounding suburbs of Northern Sydney, and our staff come to your home. There are 3 main steps involved:
1. Off-road assessment: The OT will complete visual, physical and cognitive exams to monitor your current overall functioning. Your driving and relevant medical history will also be noted.
2. On-road assessment: You will drive a dual-controlled vehicle with the OT and driving instructor as your passengers. The on-road portion will last for 1 hour and you will drive in all traffic conditions. The chief aim of the assessment is to gauge if your medical condition or injury is influencing your current driving performance. Any anxiety (related to the assessment situation) or being unfamiliar with the car will be taken into account during the assessment.
3. Feedback and report: The OT will inform you of the assessment’s outcome afterwards. They will then develop a report that will also be given to your referring doctor and RMS, as well as any other pertinent party (e.g. NDIS, your employer or insurance company).
What are the possible outcomes following the assessment?
Generally, there are three possible results from the OT driving assessment:
- The assessment finds that your medical condition is not currently impacting on your driving, and you may return to driving
- The OT recommends that you undergo some driving lessons to improve any mistakes or difficulties observed during the assessment. If the OT prescribes a vehicle modification for you, you will need lessons to use the modification safely (before taking the RMS disability test).
- The assessment determines that your condition is stopping you from driving safely and to RMS standards, and nil further lessons or modifications can help you to improve your driving.
If you live in the Manly area, contact our friendly staff now for more information!