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UofL HealthNetwork Blog

July 23, 2019

The ability to drive is a crucial component of a person’s independence. However, driving often seems an unattainable goal for those who are limited by illness, injury, psychological, and the physiological changes associated with aging.

The Frazier Rehab Institute’s comprehensive Driver Education and Training Program provides an opportunity for individuals to gain back their independence in driving. Within the program, occupational therapy professionals, certified as driver rehab specialists, work closely with physicians to review the participant’s medical and driving history, perform a pre-driving and vehicle evaluation, behind-the-wheel evaluation and, if necessary, training and equipment recommendations.

“Our main goal is to get you back to driving and get back your independence,” Suzanne F. Farnan-Maddux, OTR/L, CDRS, Frazier Rehab Institute – Newburg, said while discussing the main goal for the program. “We understand the importance of remaining in control of your life and we are determined to do everything we can to help return our clients to independent driving, even on a limited/restricted basis if they have the skills to drive.”

Participants must possess a valid driver’s license or permit, be physically and medically stable, seizure-free for three months, and possess endurance to tolerate a two-hour evaluation. Candidates for the Frazier Rehab Institute Driver Training and Education Program include:

  • Individuals with physical impairments interested in returning to driving
  • Individuals with physical or cognitive limitations who are unaware of their potential to drive.
  • Individuals with physical or psychosocial deficits (ADHD, Spina Bifida, CP, or Multiple Sclerosis) interested in beginning to drive.
  • Anyone needing information on driving issues concerning the following:
    • Visual impairments*
    • Diabetes
    • Older drivers
    • Arthritis
    • Congenital disabilities
    • Cardiac, orthopedic or spinal conditions, illnesses or injuries
    • Alzheimer’s and other dementia-related syndromes and neurological impairments

Frazier’s comprehensive driving program provides pre-driving evaluation, behind-the wheel evaluation, individualized driving training, and vehicle and equipment evaluation. All participants are given every opportunity to maximize their driving potential before completing the program. Occasionally, an individual can initiate or return to driving only under certain restrictions, such as daytime driving only. The program will also make these recommendations on an individual basis. To learn more about the comprehensive program details, click here.

To learn more about Frazier Rehab Institute’s comprehensive Driver Evaluation and Training Program and costs, please contact Frazier Rehab Institute Newburg at 502.451.6886.

*Individuals with visual disturbances or visual field cut will be given a form to present to an ophthalmologist prior to the evaluation. To learn more about driving for the visually impaired, click here