Quitting driving: Families key but doctors have role

Quitting driving: Families key but doctors have role

Quitting driving: Families key but doctors have role

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Associated Press

Posted on September 27, 2012 at 6:11 AM

Updated Thursday, Sep 27 at 1:18 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — Families worried about an older member still driving can look to a large Canadian study that suggests doctors may have greater influence on a person's decision to give up the keys.

The study found that when doctors warn patients, and tell driving authorities that the older folks may be medically unfit to drive, there's a drop in serious crash injuries among those drivers.

Unlike in most of the U.S., doctors in much of Canada are supposed to report patients with certain health conditions to licensing authorities.

In the U.S., families are on their own with a difficult and sometimes scary prospect.

By one U.S. estimate, about 600,000 older drivers a year quit because of health conditions. But given the lack of transportation options in much of the country, quitting too soon can be detrimental.

The study is in Thursday's New England Journal of Medicine.

%@AP Links

243-c-18-(Lauran Neergaard, AP medical writer)-"time to quit"-AP Medical Writer Lauran Neergaard reports that getting a family member to give up the car keys without a doctor's input can be a difficult, as she found when talking to one Texas woman whose husband has been diagnosed with early-stage Alzheimer's. (26 Sep 2012)

<<CUT *243 (09/26/12)>> 00:18 "time to quit"

241-c-20-(Lauran Neergaard, AP medical writer)-"conversation with them"-AP Medical Writer Lauran Neergaard reports a study of drivers in Ontario found a 45 percent drop in car accidents when doctors warned patients, and reported to authorities, when they seemed medically unfit to be on the road. (26 Sep 2012)

<<CUT *241 (09/26/12)>> 00:20 "conversation with them"

244-c-14-(Lauran Neergaard, AP medical writer)-"up changing doctors"-AP Medical Writer Lauran Neergaard reports the study revealed that having doctors warn patients when they may be medically unfit to drive had an unfortunate side effect. (26 Sep 2012)

<<CUT *244 (09/26/12)>> 00:14 "up changing doctors"

242-c-16-(Lauran Neergaard, AP medical writer)-"on the brakes"-AP Medical Writer Lauran Neergaard reports the American Medical Association does recommend a few tests doctors can give to help assess the driving ability of older patients. (26 Sep 2012)

<<CUT *242 (09/26/12)>> 00:16 "on the brakes"

232-a-13-(Jerry Wiseman, 69-year-old driver who takes refresher driving course every three years, in AP interview)-"looking for those"-Jerry Wiseman, a 69-year-old driver who takes a refresher driving course every three years, says it teaches aging drivers a couple of key signs to determine for themselves when to stop driving, rather than have someone else to tell them. (26 Sep 2012)

<<CUT *232 (09/26/12)>> 00:13 "looking for those"

231-a-16-(Jerry Wiseman, 69-year-old driver who takes refresher driving course every three years, in AP interview)-"and shouldn't do"-Jerry Wiseman, a 69-year-old driver who takes a refresher driving course every three years, says it helps older drivers know when it's time to limit their driving or hang up the keys. (26 Sep 2012)

<<CUT *231 (09/26/12)>> 00:16 "and shouldn't do"

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