5 minute test for elderly drivers

Old man in hat! He shouldn't be driving! Perhaps that is true and now there has been a test developed to help determine if some of our more senior drivers should not be renewing their license.

By 2025 you will see 25% of Canadians will be 65 years of age or older. There is a further concern that by the year 2040 the number of people in Canada with Alzheimer's disease will more than double. Do you want these people behind the wheel as our streets grow more congested?

A five minute pen and paper test has been developed in response to the need for a doctor to assess whether or not a senior is fit to keep driving. This test, known as the SIMARD-MD will evaluate the four abilities you need to drive: attention, judgment, memory and decision-making.

Dementia is not the only health concern for seniors. Consider challenged motor control which can come from arthritis or Parkison's Disease, cataracts and glaucoma which can affect your vision and different diseases of the brain that can affect your ability to process and retain information. Aging is not for cowards!

It is interesting to note that having dementia does not automatically disqualify you from driving. This new screening tool is being published in the Journal of Primary Care and Community Health in June 2010.