Driving Rehabilitation Specialists’ Perspectives on Older Driver Evaluations

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Abstract

OBJECTIVE. We explored driving rehabilitation specialists’ (DRSs’) perspectives on older driver evaluations.

METHOD. We conducted interviews with 26 DRSs across the United States who evaluate older drivers. Transcript analysis followed general inductive techniques to identify themes related to current systems and barriers to use.

RESULTS. Themes, by Social–Ecological Model level, were as follows: (1) individual occupational therapists’ commitment to mobility and safety, perceived responsibilities, and experience; (2) DRSs’ relationships with drivers, medical providers, and licensing bureaus; (3) the community surrounding the DRSs, including the health care system and transportation resources; and (4) societal factors, including DRS reimbursement, reporting requirements and liability coverage, and role of national organizations.

CONCLUSIONS. This qualitative study identified barriers to the development of an effective system for older driver evaluations. Future work should verify, refine, and expand these findings by targeting other stakeholder groups.

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