News article

Driving with early dementia - Article published by Taylor & Francis Online

The scientific article Assessing fitness to drive—A validation study on patients with mild cognitive impairment has recently been published by Taylor & Francis Online. Among the authors of the article are SWOV-researchers Ragnhild Davidse and Jolieke de Groot.

Currently, about 250 000 people in the Netherlands suffer from dementia. In 2040, this number is expected to have doubled. Research shows that although drivers with early dementia have an increased risk of crashes, they can often still drive safely. Recently, a strategy was composed for the assessment of their fitness to drive, consisting of clinical interviews, a neuropsychological assessment, and driving simulator rides. A selection of tests and parameters of the new approach revealed a predictive accuracy of 97.4% for the prediction of practical fitness to drive on an initial sample of patients with Alzheimer’s dementia. The aim of the present study was to explore whether the selected variables would be equally predictive (i.e. valid) for a closely related group of patients, i.e. patients with Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI). Analysis showed that the selected measures were adequately accurate in identifying fitness to drive in patients with MCI. A combination of neuropsychological assessment and  driving simulator rides provided the most valid prediction of fitness to drive in the MCI sample, whereas clinical interviews were not significantly predictive for fitness to drive in this sample.


Risks, Human behaviour in traffic