AMA Offers Tool to Help Address Driving Safety of Older Patients

CHICAGO — The American Medical Assoc. (AMA) has announced a free, Web-based educational course to help physicians address the driving safety of their older patients.

“Medical Fitness to Drive: Is Your Patient at Risk?” was created by the AMA in collaboration with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to help physicians identify when medical conditions may impair their patients’ ability to drive.

“As the number of older drivers with medical conditions grows, patients and their families will often turn to physicians for guidance on safe driving,” said AMA President Dr. Peter Carmel. “Physicians can use the tools and information contained in this course to better-address safe-driving practices with their patients, thereby promoting the safety of our patients and our roads.”

The AMA encourages physicians to make driver safety a routine part of their geriatric medical services. “Medical Fitness to Drive” will provide assessment tools, case studies, and additional resources for physicians to better-evaluate and counsel older drivers in their care. The AMA conducted a pilot study for this Web-based course, and 87{06cf2b9696b159f874511d23dbc893eb1ac83014175ed30550cfff22781411e5} of physicians who participated said they learned specific techniques or tools that will enhance their practices regarding older drivers.

“Getting older shouldn’t mean the end of driving for our nation’s seniors, but medical problems can sometimes impair an individual’s ability to drive safely,” said David Strickland, administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. “The AMA’s Web-based tool should help physicians assess patients’ capacity to operate a vehicle and help keep everyone on our roads more safe.”

“Medical Fitness to Drive” will be available for continuing educational credits for physicians and other health care professionals. For more information on older driver safety, visit