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Elli Kollbaum, Dawn Meyer, Martin Rickert, Arthur Bradley, Pete S Kollbaum; Provider perceptions on the importance of visual field attributes when making driving eligibility decisions. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2018;59(9):3416. doi: https://doi.org/.
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The topic of driving and vision has received much attention, but vision requirements for licensure at the state level in the US remain varied. Therefore, eye care professionals must make driving eligibility decisions based on any local laws, possibly combined with their own perceptions of other parameters of visual functioning that may alter risk.
A pilot electronic survey was used to query low vision care providers regarding their perceived importance of specific diagnostic assessments and resulting information, and associated processes regarding driving eligibility and licensure decisions for visually impaired individuals. The survey consisted of 44 questions.
The results reported here are based on the initial sample of thirty qualified respondents ranging from 27-78 (median=51.5) years of age with 1-44 (median=15) years of low vision clinical experience. Responses were obtained from individuals in 16 different US states and Australia. When asked if visual field testing was important for their decisions on driving eligibility, 100% of respondents agreed. Similarly, 100% of respondents perceived individuals with reduced visual field to be at increased risk for motor vehicle crash. When queried regarding perceived ideal minimum visual field requirements, 80% stated binocular, while only 16% stated both binocular and monocular fields were ideal. When queried regarding minimum visual field requirement orientation, 67% stated both horizontal and vertical fields should be evaluated, whereas 33% stated only horizontal fields were important. When queried regarding ideal screening requirements for minimum monocular and binocular horizontal visual field, median responses were 105 (range 50-140) and 120 (range 70-160) degrees, respectively.
These preliminary results indicate that most low vision care providers believe visual field testing is an important part of their decision-making process in determining driving eligibility. Further evidence should be obtained to substantiate these perceptions. Although many states already have some visual field requirements, an evaluation and possible standardization of these requirements may be prudent.
This is an abstract that was submitted for the 2018 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Honolulu, Hawaii, April 29 - May 3, 2018.
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