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New DVLA rules allow specialist nurses to assess fitness to drive

An amendment to the Road Traffic Act means that registered healthcare professionals, including those registered with the NMC and HCPC, can now be authorised to provide information where a driver has declared a medical condition such as diabetes.

Diabetes specialist nurses are among the healthcare professionals now able to complete DVLA medical questionnaires, as part of an approach by the DVLA to improve and speed up the medical licensing process. An amendment to the Road Traffic Act means that registered healthcare professionals, including those registered with the NMC and HCPC, can now be authorised to provide information where a driver has declared a medical condition such as diabetes.

The change in the law allows these professionals to complete DVLA medical forms following deferment by a doctor. The DVLA will continue to send questionnaires to GMC-registered 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.

The change does not apply to the D4 Medical Examination Report (for Group 2, bus or lorry licences) which will still need to be completed by a GMC-registered doctor or consultant.

All healthcare professionals who provide advice on diabetes should familiarise themselves fully with chapter 3 of the Assessing Fitness to Drive guidance, and discuss with colleagues or the DVLA Medical Team if they are uncertain about how to interpret guidance in relation to individual patients.

Click here for Jane Diggle’s How-to guide on assessing fitness to drive.

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