Written by Franki Collinson, Occupational Therapist and Champion for Cognition

For many of our clients concerns about driving can play heavily on their minds. Some may have lost their licence as a result of injury or seizures at the time of an accident, for others their concern is being unsure as to whether they can/should apply for a provisional licence, having never driven before but being aware of the positive impact that driving could bring in terms of increasing independence and a feeling of self- identity.

At SP Therapy Services we are proud to offer assessments and advice to support our clients who are wishing to take their first tentative steps toward learning to drive or returning to driving.

Franki Collinson is experienced in carrying out the Rookwood Driving Battery (RDB) a screening tool which assesses the thinking skills required to drive safely. The tests have been chosen because they examine brain functions relevant to driving. These include the ability to look around the visual world and see what’s out there; including what shape things are and where things are and the ability to attend to both sides of space all the time-which we do without thinking.

In her role as Cognitive Champion, Franki may provide input in the following ways in order to guide her clients through a range of options which may include:

  • Administering and explaining the results of the RDB including completion of a useful report which can be shown to solicitors/driving assessment centres. The test can be administered in clinic or in client’s own home.
  • Arranging a visit to the driving simulator at Bolton Fire and Rescue Service for a basic assessment of driving skills in a safe and fun environment.

Franki’s client, Daniel uses the simulator at Bolton Fire and Rescue Service

  • Supporting the client to contact the DVLA to make enquiries regarding regaining a licence or completing an application to the DVLA for a provisional licence
  • Advising clients re the procedures to expect when attending a driving assessment centre if this is deemed necessary by the DVLA. If required Franki may also attend with the client to provide confidence
  • Setting up a study routine and practising questions to pass the theory aspect of the driving test using resources provided by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA)