The OT driving assessment
Once you have made an appointment with a driver trained OT, the driving assessment involves two parts: an off-road and on-road assessment. Usually, the OT visits you at home. In the off-road assessment, the OT talks to you about your medical history (regarding driving) and driving experience. You will then undergo three small tests focusing on your cognition, vision and physical capacity. The purpose of the off-road assessment is for the OT to preliminary explore any potential issues that could affect driving ability. If any issues are observed, they will be examined further in the next section of the assessment.
The on-road assessment involves the driving instructor and OT observing you driving. A dual-controlled car is used (with the transmission of your choosing) and you are asked to drive for one hour. The focal point of the assessment is to establish how your medical condition is currently impacting on your driving. The OT aims to observe that you are driving safely as per RMS standards. Essentially, this decision is based on how much physical assistance or intervention the driving instructor needed to give you during the assessment. If the driving instructor had to utilise the emergency brake or take control of the steering wheel, it signalled that you had difficulties safely responding to a situation. Thus, the driving instructor had to intervene to prevent a potential accident. If nil intervention was necessary, you will likely obtain a favourable outcome.
After the assessment, the OT will let you know the results and what is to follow. They will complete the report and inform the RMS and your referring doctor of the outcome and recommendations.