Driver Rehabilitation

Community Therapists is a pioneer in the field of Driver Rehabilitation. Having developed an evidenced based protocol for Functional Driving Evaluation in 1994, we are one of the first practices to offer this vital service to the community and have completed more than 2000 evaluations and numerous on-road driver rehabilitation programs. This service meets the needs of individuals whose ability to drive has been challenged by illness, physical injury, cognitive impairment visual deficit, and/or anxiety/emotional disorder. Our programs are delivered by occupational therapists with specialized expertise and are delivered in active partnership with the client, the primary care physician, a certified driving instructor, and RoadSafetyBC (Driver Medical Fitness Program).

Unlike other driving assessments that are heavily computerized and focus on a rigid “pass/fail” methodology with little or no opportunity for training, Community Therapists’ evidence based methodology focuses on evaluating the client’s rehabilitation potential to return to driving. Where appropriate, clients are offered a comprehensive driver rehabilitation program to facilitate a return to this vital daily activity.

Client Profile


Community Therapists has successfully assisted clients with a range of functional limitations in developing or regaining functional driving skills. This includes clients with traumatic brain injury/concussion, anxiety/PTSD, driving phobia, paraplegia, stroke, amputations, as well as chronic pain and fatigue related conditions.


Functional Driving Evaluation


Cognitive, perceptual, behavioural, visual and physical core skills are assessed to determine impact on operational, tactical and strategic driving. The Functional Driving Evaluation is divided into two components; the In-Clinic and On-Road evaluations. The In-Clinic component is comprised of a battery of validated tests to assess an individual’s skill deficits. The On-Road component takes place upon successful completion of the In-Clinic evaluation. During the On-Road evaluation, driving performance and ability to compensate for identified skill deficits is further assessed. All vehicle classes can be assessed including the ability to operate motorized equipment such as forklifts and excavators.

Click here to complete our referral form.


Vehicle Modification Assessment


Individualized assessment for vehicle modifications is completed by assessing the client’s physical, cognitive and visual abilities required to operate primary and secondary vehicle controls. Recommended modifications may include hand controls and devices to improve on-road performance. Community Therapists works with NMEDA member dealers to facilitate safe, reliable and effective modifications. Click here to complete our referral form.


Vehicle Accessibility


Individualized assessment for vehicle access by driver or passenger is conducted to provide recommendations for safe and reliable access and storage of mobility devices. Solutions may include motorized ramps, transfer strategies and vehicle selection recommendations.


Available Driver Rehabilitation Programs


Off-Road Remediation

Off-road remediation targets skill deficit areas within the safe environment of a clinic, client’s home or community (i.e. visual scanning, attention, visual processing, anxiety etc.). The goal is to transition to an on-road driver rehab program when clinically appropriate to do so. Off-Road Remediation can be particularly helpful for clients with driving phobias and other anxiety related driving limitations.

On-Road Retraining / Rehabilitation

Under the supervision of the occupational therapist, adapted driving lessons with a certified driving instructor are provided. The OT develops and monitors this program, and provides the client with a Driver Rehabilitation Lesson Plan. Each program is customized to meet the client’s specific needs. The program targets the client’s ability to compensate for identified skill deficits through targeted intervention, strategy use and/or vehicle modifications with the goal of developing functional driving skills.


For Potential Clients


If you would like more information on our Driving Rehabilitation program, please click here to review our Frequently Asked Questions handout or email our Service Coordinator at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Click here to complete our referral form. For more information on Transportation Resources, please click here.


For Referring Clinicians


If you would like more information on how to determine whether your client is a candidate for a Functional Driving Evaluation, please click here to review our Frequently Asked Questions handout for health professionals. If you’re a physician, please click here to complete our referral form. If you’re a rehab professional, please click here to complete our referral form. You may also contact our office to speak with a member of our Driver Rehabilitation clinical team to discuss your case by calling 604-681-9293.

 
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