Driving Centre Overview

HAD’s Driving Team

Need Advice or Help to get back to driving after injury or illness. Are you safe to drive?

The Driving Centre has been part of Herts Ability for 21 Years. It is a member of an organisation called Driving Mobility. This is a nationwide network of independent organisations which offer advice and assessment to people who need to gain or retain independence through mobility. As this would suggest, the Driving Centre at Herts Ability seeks to help people decide how they can manage to travel around their community in the safest and most appropriate way. This can mean finding ways they can continue or return to driving in the face of an illness or disability or to find alternatives, such as community transport schemes, public transport or even assessing the suitability of a mobility scooter. Our assessments are recognised by the DVLA so if you are safe you can reclaim your license

Driving Assessments

People drive cars for many reasons. For some, it is a pastime and pleasure in its own right. They love cars and love to drive them. Most of the time, however, it is simply a way of getting from A to B. It maybe the need to get to work, to go to their local hobby group, to go shopping or simply to visit friends or relatives. Driving also helps them to go to a hospital or doctor’s appointment. Whatever the reason, driving is likely to be an important part of their lives.

If they are unfortunate enough to have an illness or disability which affects their physical or cognitive abilities it can also, unfortunately, affect their ability to drive or to drive safely. This is where Herts Ability can help by providing a driving assessment. The purpose of this assessment is to give an independent and expert opinion and recommendation regarding their driving, and most importantly, their safety. Whenever possible we want to help them to continue to, or return to driving and we will help them to explore the options for achieving this.

People are able to refer themselves to Herts Ability for an assessment. Sometimes, their doctor or therapist can do this on their behalf. The DVLA also refer people for driving assessments as do Motability if people are on or eligible for the Motability scheme.

If people refer themselves or are referred by a doctor or therapist then a fee to cover the costs will apply. This currently ranges from £55.20 to £90 depending upon the type of assessment required.

People attend assessments because of concerns about how their medical condition or disability might be affecting their ability to drive. The list of medical conditions that can do this is huge, as one might imagine! Below is a list of some of the more common conditions Herts Ability sees -:

  • Dementia
  • Stroke
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Limb loss
  • Neuropathy (often in association with diabetes)
  • Spinal injury
  • Arthritis
  • Head injury
  • Motor Neurone Disease

There is a legal requirement for anyone with a driving licence to notify the DVLA if they are diagnosed with one of a wide range of medical conditions. Failure to do so can result in a prosecution and possibly a substantial fine. Further guidance on which conditions this applies to and how to do this can be found on the DVLA website at www.gov.uk/driving-medical-conditions .

Local Transport

If, because of a medical condition or for any other reason, you do not drive and are not sure what local transport options are available to you, ask Herts Ability. We hold information on local schemes which may help. This is a free service.

Other assessments

The Driving Centre can also provide assessments and advice regarding other aspects of personal mobility. These include the following-:

  1. Car access assessments
  2. Mobility scooter assessments
  3. Wheelchair and scooter loading assessments (coming soon)
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