I once had a patient transfer to another provider when I refused to authorize him to drive (the state I was in, a DMV report involved me then doing a 6 page driver competency paperwork). He was an alcoholic, demented 80+ guy who could not even walk without falling down. The next doctor refused as well, and as far as I know he then proceeded to have no physician at all and my staff saw him driving all over town anyway. Family intervention would have been helpful, for sure.
ResidentMom<br /><br />"If you bungle raising your children, I don't think whatever else you do well matters very much." --Jackie O.
Just keep in mind that sometimes an accident is an accident is an accident, even if you're 80. You sound like you're a little on the fence about this patient - if you find out you can report her or have a part in taking away her license, make sure her age is the factor. Talking with the family will help a great deal. My grandmother had an accident at age 82, when she mistook her gas for brake and rear-ended 2 cars in a pile-up fashion. Family was notified, and they made the decision with grandma to shuttle her around and have her stop driving. Approach to the situation is key.
Too bad they can't take a teen's license away for a while after a series of wrecks...
"Some of it's magic and some of it's tragic but I had a good life all the way."<br />- He Went to Paris by Jimmy Buffett
Thanks, everyone, for the comments & good advice. I live in a state which has voluntary reporting & I did check out the AAFP web site for resources, but the article I found was from 2000 & did not provide me with much helpful info. Megboo, you hit the nail on the head of what I am struggling with. This patient is forgetful, late to appointments, no-shows, goes on tangents, etc-- but I have 40 yo patients that do this as well. I don't necessarily think age should be a factor in taking someone's license away as much as competence & cognitive ability should play a role. I think most elderly drivers limit their own driving once they notice their reflexes aren't as sharp or their vision starts to fail. What I worry with this patient is that her insight is lacking & she lacks that discernment-- again, not something that is strictly age related. I will talk to her family since she is new to me just to see if this is just a one time occurrence or a pattern of down hill behavior. Thank you, ladies- as always your advice is invaluable & please keep it coming.