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DVLA announces change in the law to enable more healthcare professionals to complete medical questionnaires

Posted on 27/02/19 |
      • From today, 20 July, the law has changed to enable healthcare professionals other than doctors to complete DVLA medical questionnaires following notification of a medical condition that may affect an individual’s driving, DVLA has announced

         

      • The change to the Road Traffic Act 1988 will now allow doctors to refer medical questionnaires to colleagues such as specialist nurses and opticians from other professional bodies

         

      • This change is a result of extensive work by DVLA including a public consultation where 82% of respondents were supportive of the change

         

      • This forms part of an approach by DVLA to speed up elements of the medical licencing process while reducing the burden on doctors to complete DVLA medical questionnaires

      Specialist nurses and opticians are among the healthcare professionals now able to complete DVLA medical questionnaires, as part of an approach by DVLA to improve and speed up the medical licensing process.  The amendment means a wider pool of registered healthcare professionals, other than doctors, can now be authorised to provide information where a driver has declared a medical condition.

      By law, all drivers must meet the medical standards for fitness to drive.  Often, other healthcare professionals such as nurses or opticians will be involved in patient care and this change in the law now allows these and others to complete DVLA medical forms following deferment by a doctor.  DVLA will continue to send questionnaires to GMC doctors and consultants, and it will then be up to individual GP practices and hospital teams as to which healthcare professional in practice is best placed to complete the questionnaire.

      Previously, only doctors registered with the General Medical Council (GMC) could complete the questionnaires.  Although there is no requirement for GP surgeries or hospital teams to make changes to their current processes, the change to the law will now allow medical professionals from the following Councils to complete medical questionnaires on behalf of doctors:

      • General Chiropractic Council
      • The General Optical Council
      • The General Osteopathic Council
      • The Nursing and Midwifery Council
      • Health and Care Professions Council

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