The pool of healthcare professionals who can approve DVLA medical questionnaires may be extended to include nurses, the Government has said.
A four-week consultation launched yesterday will decide whether healthcare professionals other than GPs and medical practitioners can help to reduce DVLA-related bureaucracy for GPs.
Other healthcare professionals such as nurses are ‘equally placed’ in many cases to complete the questionnaire, the Government has said.
Legally, all drivers must meet the medical standards for fitness to drive.
The DVLA makes half a million medical licensing decisions annually and often requires drivers’ GPs or consultants to help complete medical questionnaires.
DVLA chief executive Julie Lennard said: ‘Year on year we are seeing an increase in medical licensing applications for drivers and we are continuously looking for ways to improve the process for customers and the medical profession.
‘This proposal would allow a wider pool of healthcare professionals to complete a driver’s medical questionnaire, reducing the burden on GPs and consultants. We are particularly keen to seek views from registered healthcare professionals, medical practitioners and representative bodies within the health sector on making this change.’
The consultation will run until 6 December.
It comes as the Government’s access plan for general practice promised to reduce ‘administrative burdens’ related to DVLA checks and appraisals.
In August, the BMA said that more than 200,000 drivers were in the backlog of applications for medical assessments needed to renew their licence, with the number growing by thousands each month.