Occupational Therapy Driving Assessments

Driving is considered a complex activity that integrates the visual, cognitive and physical components of a person.

When these components have been compromised from injury, disease or disability then it is often necessary for an Occupational Therapist to intervene in order to determine if a person is safe to drive.

The holder of a driver’s licence is legally responsible to notify the traffic authorities if they have a permanent and long term condition that is likely to affect their ability to drive safely. People may also be notified directly by the authorities that they require a driving assessment.

Medical practitioners may be unsure about how a patient’s medical condition may impact on their functional ability to drive safely. Therefore, it is recommended that the use of an independent specialist, such as an OT, is used to bridge this challenge.

Occupational Therapy Driving Assessments can assist people with the following medical conditions:

  • Disability
  • Dementia
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Memory problems
  • Brain injury
  • Stroke
  • Spinal injury
  • Physical injury
  • Mental health issues
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Congenital conditions
  • Amputations


What does the OT driving assessment entail?

At Icaria Health, we have professionals who are trained and qualified to conduct OT driving assessments. An OT driving assessment consists of 2 components: an off-road and on-road assessment. Once completed, the state traffic authority will be notified of the outcome and if necessary, a remediation program will be carried out.

The On-Road Assessment

The On-Road Assessment is carried out by an OT Driving Assessor with the assistance of a qualified driving instructor to perform the on road assessment and formulate recommendations and feedback to the client to determine whether:

  1. The person’s medical condition affects the person’s ability to drive safely
  2. Equipment, modifications or adapting the driving technique will assist the client to meet safe and legal driving standards

The Off-Road Assessment

The Off-Road Assessment is a prelude to the on-road assessment.

Its purpose is to determine if there are any physical or cognitive dysfunctions that may impact on a person’s ability to drive safely within the RMS guidelines.

The Off-Road Assessment will involve:

  • Medical consultation
  • Information gathering
  • Review of medication
  • Assessment of visual function
  • Road Law and Road Craft Knowledge
  • Physical and functional Assessment
  • Cognitive and Perceptual Screening