Letter: Clarity on drivers’ vision
Author: Colin Fowler PhD, Sutton Coldfield
In the article ‘Drivers’ vision: should drivers’ eyesight be legally regulated?’ of February 15, John Snelgrove is quoted as saying that he: ‘does not think that opticians are happy with the fact a GP has to inform the DVLA if a patient no longer has adequate vision for driving and is of the opinion that opticians should be able to do this.’
Every optical practice should have an up-to-date copy of the document Assessing fitness to drive – a guide for medical professionals, which is published by the DVLA and can be downloaded as a PDF from their website. This document is aimed at GPs and optometrists, and includes guidance from the General Medical Council and the College of Optometrists.
The whole topic of what you should do if someone refuses to stop driving when you have advised them that they do not meet the medical regulations is discussed in detail. In short, if you think that public safety outweighs patient confidentiality, then an email address and confidential phone number are given for you to inform the DVLA medical branch. You do not have to go through the patient’s GP.