MEDICAL OR VISION CONDITIONS AND DRIVING
If driving isn’t an option due to a temporary or permanent medical or vision-related condition, or you’re ineligible to drive due to a medical or vision-related sanction on your driving record, we’re here to help ease the challenges associated with identity and mobility.
There are transportation options available, many at reduced costs, to help you get where you need to go. Below is information related to driving eligibility as well as alternative transportation options.
MEDICAL OR VISION-RELATED SANCTIONS
The reason(s) for a medical sanction on your driving record is unique to the person and may include varying degrees of physical, mental, cognitive, or vision-related impairment. If you would like to get your license back, it is important to understand that your first step is a recommendation from your health care professional (i.e. MD, DO, ARNP, PAC, or vision specialist). Your doctor may request additional medical evaluations with a specialist or a medically-based driving evaluation conducted by an occupational therapist or certified driver rehabilitation specialist before making a recommendation to reinstate your driving privileges. You’ll also need to take a knowledge and on-road driving test before we can reinstate your driving privileges.
You are eligible to receive a free identification card (ID) if your Iowa driver license has been withdrawn due to a medical or vision-related sanction. Contact us or stop by one our issuance service center locations to receive your free non-driver ID card.
RENEWING A DRIVER’S LICENSE WITH A MEDICAL OR VISION-RELATED REQUIREMENT
When renewing a driver’s license, you may be required to provide a medical or vision report completed by your health-care provider. If we have determined that you need this report, it will be listed on the back of your license as a restriction and the form you need to have completed will be mailed to you a month before you need to submit the completed form back to us. If you do not receive the form, you can call the driver’s license service center located in the county in which you live to request one. The vision report form (form 430032) is available online. The medical report form must be provided by a driver’s license service center.
Your license may also list additional driving-related restrictions (i.e. no nighttime driving, no interstate driving, no manual transmission, etc.).
Have questions specific to your record and eligibility? We’re here to help. Contact us in a way convenient for you.
RE-EXAMINATIONS OF DRIVING CAPABILITIES
If someone is concerned about your driving, they may request that we re-examine your ability to drive. A re-examination request can be made by a healthcare provider, law enforcement officer, community member, or family member. Re-examination requests must be submitted in writing by filling out and signing the Request for Re-examination form (Form 431030), or may be required based on a law enforcement officer’s crash report.
Reexamination requirements include the following,
- Vision screening
- Cognitive screenings
- Knowledge exam
- On-road driving exam
Depending on the information received, additional requirements such as a satisfactory medical or vision report completed by a healthcare provider or a specialist may be requested prior to completing Iowa DOT testing requirements.
As re-examinations are unique to the individual, please be sure to read your re-examination letter carefully. Use the phone number listed at the bottom of the letter to contact us.
MEDICAL REPORT OR VISION-RELATED REPORT
The information required on a medical or vision report will vary based on the driver’s health. The more common types of health conditions that can affect driving are:
- Blackout/Fainting/Loss of consciousness
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Muscular Dystrophy
- Sleep disorders
- Heart problems
- Cognitive Impairment
- Mental Illness
- Substance Abuse
- Macular Degeneration
REPORTING AN UNSAFE DRIVER
If you have a concern about a driver, you can submit a signed Request for Re-examination (Form 431030) for a driver with a known or suspected physical, mental, cognitive, or vision condition that can impair driving.
More information about reporting an unsafe driver can be found under the FAQ section.
PROFESSIONAL DRIVING SKILLS ASSESSMENT
A medically based driver evaluation provides an objective assessment of a person’s ability to safely drive. Driver evaluations are usually provided by occupational therapists and/or driver rehabilitation specialists. A clinical assessment typically includes evaluation of arm and leg strength and mobility, reaction time for braking, visual acuity and field of view, attention, concentration, perception, memory, and reasoning skills. An on-road assessment evaluates the ability to drive safely in traffic. Driver rehabilitation specialists work with drivers when adaptive equipment is needed and provide training needed to become proficient in controlling the vehicle using adaptive equipment.
You should first discuss your needs and concerns with your primary care provider as most medically based programs require a referral from your health care provider.
Your local hospital’s occupational therapy department may offer a clinical evaluation of skills necessary for driving or may be able to help you locate a program in your area.
The organizations listed below can help you locate a program: