Supporting drivers with medical issues or disabilities to gain or retain their independence.

Occupational Therapy Driver Assessments

Occupational therapists (OTs) are health professionals who assist people with physical, cognitive or behavioural impairments to participate in activities of everyday life. Our OT driver assessors have an additional qualification in driver assessment and rehabilitation and are registered with VicRoads. This allows them to help their clients to either obtain a drivers licence, or to ensure that current drivers maintain their ability to drive safely.

Our role as OT driver assessors is to assess medically impaired drivers and also to trial and prescribe vehicle modifications/hand controls for drivers with a disability. An OT driver assessment may be required due to the potential impact of a medical condition or disability on driving skills or concern about driver behaviour. OT driver assessors play an important road safety role in assisting VicRoads to meet its responsibilities to ensure that licence holders are safe drivers.

VicRoads make the final decision regarding licencing. With client consent, we will send the referrer a copy of our OT driver assessment report. The OT driver assessment process is in two parts.

Off-Road Assessment

ot driver assessmentUp to 1.5 hours, clinic-based. This helps to determine preparedness for driving. The off-road assessment is aimed at understanding the client’s previous driving history, possible medical, cognitive and functional difficulties, and the impact these difficulties have on driving. It involves an interview, vision screening, assessment of cognitive function, muscle strength, range of movement, sensation, balance and coordination. Road law knowledge may also be assessed. Possible requirements for specialised equipment or vehicle modifications are also considered at this time.

On-Road Driving Test

Up to 1.5 hours, with up to 1 hour of actual driving. This is performed to evaluate actual driving skills. It is completed on a separate day, in a dual-controlled car with both a driving instructor and your OT driver assessor. The OT driver assessor is seated in the rear of the vehicle and observes the client’s performance on a range of driving tasks and skills. A dual-control car is used to ensure safety for the driver and other road users. After the OT driver assessment process is complete, the OT driver assessor makes a recommendation to VicRoads.

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Possible Outcomes

Resume driving unconditionally, or with some licence restrictions/ conditions

Resume driving with vehicle modifications/hand controls

Required to undertake driving lessons to improve driving skills, or to familiarise with adaptive equipment

Recommended to wait until further recovery or improvement occurs

Additional on-road test required

Found to be unsafe to continue (or to resume) driving

Referral Process

An OT driver assessment can be initiated by:

GPs and Specialists

OTs or other health professionals

Clients, their families or carers

How to refer

Please fax/email your referral directly to our office

A VicRoads medical report is required

A VicRoads Eyesight or Specialist report may also be required

Please include relevant past medical history and current medications. We will liaise with VicRoads to request “Authority to Proceed” with the OT Driver Assessment. The on-road assessment cannot be undertaken until VicRoads Medical Review has given authority to proceed.

The VicRoads Medical Report form and further information is available at www.vicroads.vic.gov.au/licences/medical-conditions-and-driving/reporting-a-medical-condition-or-driver

Our Occupational Therapists are registered with the following agencies:

Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA)
Medicare Australia
TAC (Framework OTs)
Work Safe (Framework OTs)
Private Health Funds
Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency
Occupational Therapy Australia
Statewide Equipment Program (SWEP)
National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)

Contact our office to enquire about OT Driver Assessments – 8707 0830.

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OT Driver Assessment – Frankston, Brighton Bayside and the Mornington Peninsula

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