Lisa Kristalovich, W. Ben Mortenson; Visual Field Impairment and Driver Fitness: A 1-Year Review of Crashes and Traffic Violations. Am J Occup Ther 2019;73(5):7305345010. https://doi.org/10.5014/ajot.2019.030973
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© 2019 American Occupational Therapy Association
Importance: Occupational therapists frequently assess the fitness to drive of people with visual field impairment, but the relationship between these assessments and driving performance over time is not well understood.
Objective: To determine traffic violation and crash incidence over a 1-yr period for drivers with visual field impairment.
Design: Retrospective review of medical and driving records.
Setting: British Columbia, Canada.
Participants: Participants (N = 445) were ages 26–74 yr with binocular, corrected visual acuity of ≥20/50. Goldmann visual field tests were reviewed to stratify participants on the basis of visual field impairment and whether impairments exceeded licensing standards.
Outcome and Measures: Traffic records were reviewed to determine group-specific traffic violations and crash incidence during the year after the visual field test.
Results: Of 445 participants, 292 held a valid driver’s license during the designated period. Participants not meeting the licensing standards were less likely to become licensed than participants who met the standards. The results indicate that drivers with visual field impairment did not have a higher probability of crashes or violations than drivers without visual field impairment.
Conclusion: Drivers with visual field impairment who retained a driver’s license did not have an increased probability of crashes in the following year. A larger, prospective, mixed methods study of long-term driving behaviors among people with visual field impairment is recommended.
What This Article Adds: This study provides preliminary data on the 1-yr incidence of traffic violations and crashes among people with visual field impairment.
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