For some, independence comes by way of the driver’s seat. Our Driver Rehabilitation Program is a specialized service to evaluate your skills and road readiness. We help you identify and implement adaptive tools and vehicle modifications that can help you to safely get behind the wheel.
Specialized services are selected based on your physician’s recommendation and your own needs. Safety is the top concern, whether you’re a mature driver in need of an assessment after experiencing vision problems, or a new driver who can’t complete a traditional drivers’ education course because of a disability. We also work closely with those who’ve experienced stroke, traumatic brain injury or spinal cord injury to provide assessment and, when appropriate, training.
You also may learn how to drive modified vehicles through our full-service program. We can guide you through the process of obtaining your own modified vehicle and let you test drive a variety of driving systems. We’ll even modify a vehicle specifically for your training. We also can provide detailed information about adaptive equipment, costs and maintenance.
As part of our Driver Rehabilitation Program, you’ll be matched with a group of experts to provide you a high level of attention and maximize your results. A Mary Free Bed occupational therapist may conduct a clinical evaluation to assess things like your vision and motor function. Your occupational therapist also provides insight into your strengths and any potential problem areas that could affect your ability to safely drive.
Your driver rehabilitation specialist will assess your driving skills in a variety of traffic situations during the functional driving evaluation. This professional also will review your medical history, driver’s license status and driving history to gain a comprehensive understanding of the factors that affect your ability to return to the road.
An Overview of Our Services
Your rehabilitation specialists will coordinate the Driver Rehabilitation Program services best suited for your needs.
Comprehensive Driving Evaluation
A comprehensive driving evaluation is an assessment of your ability to drive or return to driving. If you need special equipment or vehicle modification, we’ll provide information about what’s available and how much it may cost.
A comprehensive driving evaluation includes:
• Clinical evaluation with an occupational therapist
• Functional driving assessment with a driver rehabilitation specialist
• Wheelchair access compatibility assessment (if applicable)
• Education about adaptive equipment (if applicable)
• Documentation that may include prognosis for success, an estimate of time necessary for training and licensing, summary of vehicle and adaptive equipment needs
We provide this training based on your individual needs. We also guide you through the licensing process. If you require vehicle modifications, we’ll provide specific information to help you make a purchase decision.
Driver education/rehabilitation includes:
• Behind-the-wheel experience with a driver rehabilitation specialist
• Road test with licensing authority
• Vehicle modification consultation (if applicable)
Driver Rehabilitation for Experienced Drivers Needing an Assessment
This evaluation may be the right choice if you’ve had a head injury or stroke. These injuries can cause changes in your visual, perceptual and cognitive skills. A professional assessment of your driving skills may be necessary before you return to driving. In some cases, training may be required to help you or your family member compensate for any changes in skill.
Driver Rehabilitation for New Drivers
Our driver rehabilitation program helps new drivers who have a disability or limited mobility that prevents enrollment in a traditional drivers’ education course. Our program provides modified vehicles and the training you’ll need to operate them.
Driver Rehabilitation for Older Drivers
Our driver rehabilitation program may be appropriate for you or a family member experiencing difficulty driving related to such factors as:
• Slowed reaction time
• Vision problems
• Degenerative disease affecting ability to drive
We’ll evaluate current driving skills and create an assessment of what’s needed for you or your family member to continue driving safely. We can provide training, tips or vehicle modifications as necessary. When appropriate, we’ll provide information about driving retirement and alternative forms of transportation.
Driver Rehabilitation for Drivers Needing Vehicle Modification
Driver re-training is helpful if you already have a license, but need vehicle modifications because of an amputation, stroke, spinal cord injury or other condition. We’ll not only teach you how to drive modified vehicles, but also help you throughout the process of obtaining your own modified vehicle. We have various driving systems available for trial use and can modify a vehicle specifically for your training. We also can provide detailed information about adaptive equipment, costs and maintenance.
Vehicle Modification Assistance
A driver rehabilitation specialist will provide you with a consultation, assistance and training, as needed, if you’re purchasing a modified vehicle with adaptive equipment.
Vehicle modification assistance includes:
• Modification process
• Test drive and conformance inspection
• Vehicle familiarization
Frequently Asked Questions
Below are some of the questions we most frequently hear from patients who are interested in driver rehabilitation. We’re happy to provide additional information about our program and services.