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Talking to your doctor or consultant about driving

Doctor, can I go back to driving?

This is often considered one of the most important questions asked after recovery from illness or accident. Returning to driving is frequently thought of as being one of the first steps back to normality but a serious illness or accident might affect your ability to drive safely.

You are strongly advised to discuss returning to driving with your doctor who will be able to confirm whether you meet the medical standards for fitness to drive. They can confirm whether a return to driving is immediately permitted or if you must stop driving for a period of time. The doctor should also discuss whether notification to DVLA is required.

Advice can also be sought from your occupational therapist who may be able to help with exercises to improve physical ability or brain teasers that keep you mentally alert; they would also be able to conduct the necessary tests that would confirm your physical and cognitive abilities.

Your medical team would also be able to advise you if they consider that an assessment of your practical ability to drive a car is necessary; they would then be able to refer you to your local “Driving Mobility” assessment centre, or you could refer yourself.