Driving and the doctor: awareness of current driving regulations for cardiovascular conditions amongst doctors and nurses

Br J Cardiol 2004;11:235-8 Leave a comment
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Many common cardiovascular conditions preclude patients from driving for a period of time. These regulations often affect previously fit people and may have far-reaching consequences for an individual. The doctors caring for these patients are responsible for informing them of any relevant driving restrictions. We present a survey of general physicians’ and cardiac specialist nurses’ understanding of the current Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA) regulations. Overall, there is a limited knowledge of driving regulations among physicians as a group (36% correct responses). In contrast to their poor knowledge with respect to cardiovascular conditions (30% correct), a far higher proportion of physicians knew when a patient could return to driving following an epileptic seizure (76%, p<0.001). Consultants fared better than their junior colleagues, with 41% of questions answered correctly; specialist cardiac nurses had a correct response rate of 57% for cardiac events. Most of the wrong responses overestimated the duration of the restrictions, suggesting a conservative attitude to advice offered.

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