George Morfakis, representative of the Road Safety PIN (Performance Index) in Cyprus presented the results of the 40th “PIN Flash Report 40” of the European Transport Safety Council.
This report examines the current state of play in PIN countries regarding the assessment of medical fitness to drive, with reference to the 2006 EU Directive on Driving Licences.
Studies have concluded that specific medical conditions, substance abuse, mental disorders, epilepsy and diabetes are more important factors than age when it comes to medical fitness to drive. Mandatory age-based screening of older drivers has not been shown to be effective in preventing severe collisions. It may even have a negative safety impact, as older drivers become vulnerable road users.
Medical checks performed when obtaining a licence, renewing a licence or re-licensing can be useful for identifying medical conditions which may affect fitness to drive.
Medical fitness to drive is a matter of judgement as well as science and the levels of training or guidance provided to those assessing medical fitness to drive in PIN countries vary. Eleven PIN countries help those assessing medical fitness to drive with a set of guidelines and seventeen PIN countries have a regulation which stipulates how fitness to drive should be assessed. A clear set of guidelines issued to those assessing medical fitness to drive is known to have a positive effect.