Drivers Assessment Program

Our Location

Rehabilitation Clinic

(608) 263-8412

 

Questions About Driver Readiness

Peggy Nied, OTR

(608) 263-8412 

pnied@uwhealth.org

 

Sarah Gunderson, OTR

(608) 262-7804

sgunderson@uwhealth.org

An assessment of the fundamental skills necessary to operate a motor vehicle is available through UW Health.

 

A UW Health occupational therapist will evaluate the individual's level of independence with Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADL). The evaluation includes an assessment of strength, range of motion, coordination, vision, visual perception and cognition. A written evaluation is completed by the clinician and shared with the referring provider.

 

This standardized assessment takes place in a clinic-based setting and does not include a behind-the-wheel assessment of driving ability. Fees for the clinical evaluation are billed as an occupational therapy service and are reimbursed by most health insurance providers. As part of the service, our therapy providers will provide information and resources for behind-the-wheel assessments available from non-UW Health providers.

 

Who Should Get an Assessment

 

Drivers or potential drivers who have concerns about their driving abilities and would like a detailed, objective assessment.

 

Our clinicians are trained to work with individuals with a variety of disabilities or special needs. Typical client characteristics include:

  • Individuals who have experienced a medical change or injury such as stroke, spinal cord injury, head injury, amputation, multiple sclerosis, diabetes or peripheral neuropathy
  • Individuals with a congenital disability such as cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy or spina bifida that may require special accommodations to drive safely
  • Individuals experiencing the effects of aging including loss of mobility or cognitive decline and are concerned about how this might affect their driving skills

How to Schedule an Assessment

 

Patients who are interested in an assessment should contact their physician. A physician referral to occupational therapy for an Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADL) Assessment is requested to receive the driver assessment. This service is available on either an inpatient or outpatient basis. Inpatient referrals at UW Hospital and Clinics can be entered as a consult to occupational therapy.

 

Outpatient referrals can be faxed to the Rehabilitation Clinic at (608) 263-5011.

 

Behind-the-Wheel Evaluation

 

UW Health does not provide a behind-the-wheel assessment. There are agencies in the region that can provide behind-the-wheel testing, including the Wisconsin Department of Motor Vehicles and several private organizations. Fees for a behind-the-wheel assessment are billed separately and are typically not reimbursed by health insurance providers.