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Advice needed please: Queensland rules
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Sandii Offline

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Post: #31
RE: Advice needed please: Queensland rules
Its Day 5 since licence was taken from me.... have followed all advice from above posters here that was practical to do so given where I live and the system here. Managed to speak to only one other doctor about the situation as he was the only one that was bulk billing and taking on new patients. He informs me that unless I want to change over to him altogether as a gp then he does not want to 'interfere' with another doctor's 'diagnoses' and treatment. Current GP is not 'treating' me for anything other than an underactive thyroid. If I swap to the new dr then he has to rerun all tests (bloods etc) and he stated that for him to get a thorough and accurate result of my sleep apnoea he would have to refer me to the actual sleep clinic which is over 400kms away from where I live and could take some months just to get an appointment there. Has already cost me financially what I really can't afford to spend to see him i.e. taxi fares to and from his clinic. To travel over 400kms away is currently out of my financial position. That is through the public health system. The only sleep clinic places locally are private at $400.00 a test.
Local places only sell or rent 'regulated flow' machines and can only do so under our law if I have a prescription from current treating dr. Can sell me outright (but not rent) an 'automatic' machine but his costs of those are up in the thousands of dollar range. Even if I could get hold of an 'automatic' machine it will do me no good as to get my licence back it has to be 'trialled' by current treating gp for a period of 4 weeks minimum and current gp is not even available again now until 20 April.
The only form of 'help' I have been able to get 'offered' is for me to allow a Aged Care Assessment Team into my home to see if I can 'manage' to live 'independently'. I have had no problems living 'independently' until my licence was taken off me. Under the laws here a person can be removed from their home by these assessors and forced into 'ages care' facilities and, in some instances, even mental health facilities. I do not need to be locked up in any facility as am perfectly fine to look after myself if they hadn't taken licence off me.
I have been acused of being 'unreasonable' about this but if you had been taken away from your family as a small child and locked in institutions in this state, suffered a range of abuses by that same system (including sexual abuse) whilst in their 'care' legally until age of 18, why would you want to put yourself back into a position of being locked up again in one of their 'care' facilities?
04-04-2016 03:54 PM
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woozie38 Offline

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Post: #32
RE: Advice needed please: Queensland rules
(04-02-2016 03:37 PM)Sandii Wrote:  I am hoping someone here will be able to help me with this as I am very upset and don't know what to do. I recently was sent for a sleep apnoea test by my dr. It was one of those take home do it yourself ones and I didn't have a 'sleep over' in any clinic. When I went back to dr 2 weeks later to get the results she said she had had to notify the Transport Dept under her Mandatory Reporting Laws and 'Duty of Care' and that my car licence would be cancelled. She even tried to stop me from driving my own car home from her carpark that day. I have asked 'professionals' in my area about this and they say that she can do this and when I ask how and why they have accused me of 'being a hazard on the road' & 'dangerous on the road' as well as being an 'incompetent driver.' My problem is this - Without my licence I am completely housebound unless I pay for taxis everywhere. I do not have friends nor family who can drive me around. I cannot even get to a grocery shop to buy food and a range of other things that now stand to threaten my survival. I have driven for 40 years including some very long distances, have a clean driving record (not even a speeding fine) and have never caused an accident. What can I do about this? How can they get away with just taking your licence and your means of survival away from you without any actual proof that you are 'dangerous, a hazard or an incompetent driver' on the road? Any advice or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thx.

Hi Sandi,
Keep in mind, doctors believe they are acting in your best interest, however it's clear your doctors believe you have a condition that makes you a danger on the road. That danger is "micro-sleeps". A one second micro-sleep can have tragic consequences because a car travelling at 100km/hr. will travel 28 metres in that time & could conceivably collide with oncoming traffic, pedestrians or solid object/s. I am aware that if a patient is diagnosed with "Narcolepsy" then their driver's license is immediately suspended & the patient must cease driving. This is considered to be for the patient's own good as well as the welfare of others on the roads.
I personally have never heard of a simple home sleep study causing such a reaction by doctors. One would have thought a repeat of the study in a proper sleep lab. would have been the next step. This reaction by your doctor would seem to indicate a lack of understanding of SDB.
A diagnosis of Nacolepsy requires a MSLT (multiple sleep latency test) to be done.
Before an MSLT can be undertaken, the patient first must have a full PSG the night before to establish the quality of sleep the patient enjoyed the previous night. After completing a questionnaire, enduring a spirometry, & a test for nasal restriction, the patient enters the sleep lab. The following morning after breakfast etc. the patient returns to bed, only this time most of the sensors from the PSG are left attached so when sleep occurs, they know. Having satisfied the requirement that valid sleep has occurred, the patient is woken. The next session would be in 2 hrs time & the patient is warned of its approach 10 mins before. At the appropriate time, the testing equipment is re-calibrated and the patient told to sleep. This procedure is repeated 5 more times. If in each case the patient takes (i think) less than six minutes to sleep
the diagnosis is positive & their driver's license surrendered.
In light of the forgoing, it would appear you have limited options, but here based on my own experience, is my advice...
Ask your doctor for a referral to a sleep lab. for a repeat sleep study (PSG) and (immediately after) a MSLT.
If your MSLT is positive., Ask you doc for a prescription for Modafinil.

Once you begin taking this med, you will easily pass the MSLT & regain your license.
If you take this course PM me for a (cheaper) supply source for the med. I will answer any question you may have by PM. Good luck.
PS this medication works.

[Image: signature.png]Keep on breathin'
04-04-2016 06:30 PM
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PoolQ Offline

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Post: #33
RE: Advice needed please: Queensland rules
I hear you and pretty much no I would not care to be managed either. It is so difficult to help from over on this side of the pond, I know lots of what is available here and nothing but what you have told me about over there.
I might assume that you might have available something similar over there, and then again you might not. I have really no reason to expect anything

I would contact the Salvation army, The Goodwill, The Red Cross and/or anything like them.
I would look for any social services from the Federal Government, State, or local government.
I would look into any and all churches even close by, attended by me or not.
In the US there is a non-profit agency that will help with CPAP equipment and medical expenses for "low income" residents.
The agencies that deliver disability services would be responsible to cover medical expenses and if my situation changed I would expect that there would be some way to get them to change my payment to cover them.

I do not think you are being unreasonable, this is a major upset for you and you have a right to be upset by it. At the same time I also understand the Doctors responsibility and the States concern. I personally have been in a car where the driver fell asleep at the wheel. I hit him on the side of the head and yelled his name as he was going off the road at 70MPH. With luck he pulled back onto the road in time and refused to let anyone else drive, because of course we were almost home. I kept my hand at the ready for the rest of the trip. After we got home he refused to believe that he had fallen asleep and that we were mistaken. When you fall asleep driving you usually don't know it until it's too late.

I suggest you call anyone and everyone asking for direct help or if they know who you should be calling. I would even call local law enforcement and ask them if they can help me find out who to contact.
04-04-2016 06:48 PM
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holden4th Offline

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Post: #34
RE: Advice needed please: Queensland rules
My sleep clinic gave me some reading material that included what the QLD dept of Main Roads can do if you are diagnosed with severe sleep apnoea. It included taking your licence "if you made no attempt to treat your condition". At least that's how I read it.

I was diagnosed late last year and my GP has not notified the authorities. I also think that your doctor has not acted within the provisions of the law. I also believe, but could be wrong, that a proper sleep study conducted by medical professionals has to be done to give a legal diagnosis. I don't think this was done in your case. That said, a doctor does have the right to recommend that you not drive if they have grounds for it.

As a Queenslander and to give me a indication of what further advice I can give you it would be interesting to know what town you're in.
04-04-2016 06:57 PM
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archangle Offline
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Post: #35
RE: Advice needed please: Queensland rules
(04-03-2016 03:35 PM)FrankNichols Wrote:  And if there was no public healthcare, she would not have known and been on the road anyway, or none of the low income would know and would also be on the road anyway. I understand there are views on both sides of public healthcare and regulations concerning public safety and where the government should and should not be involved, but there are pluses and minuses in both cases here.

I wasn't down on the public healthcare aspect in this thread.

I'm down on the "make your doctor a snitch" aspect of the Nazinanny state. Even if the goal is admirable and the risk of DWA (Driving While Apenac) outweighs the "right" to drive, the result of having your doctor be an enforcement agent for the state can end up making the DWA problem worse.

Get the free SleepyHead software here.
Useful links.
Click here for information on the main alternative to CPAP.
If it's midnight and a DME tells you it's dark outside, go and check it yourself.
04-04-2016 07:04 PM
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FrankNichols Offline

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Post: #36
RE: Advice needed please: Queensland rules
(04-04-2016 07:04 PM)archangle Wrote:  
(04-03-2016 03:35 PM)FrankNichols Wrote:  And if there was no public healthcare, she would not have known and been on the road anyway, or none of the low income would know and would also be on the road anyway. I understand there are views on both sides of public healthcare and regulations concerning public safety and where the government should and should not be involved, but there are pluses and minuses in both cases here.

I wasn't down on the public healthcare aspect in this thread.

I'm down on the "make your doctor a snitch" aspect of the Nazinanny state. Even if the goal is admirable and the risk of DWA (Driving While Apenac) outweighs the "right" to drive, the result of having your doctor be an enforcement agent for the state can end up making the DWA problem worse.

Ah, I understand your point now.

I am not a Medical professional and I don't play one on the internet.
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I'd Rather Be Sleeping
04-04-2016 09:35 PM
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PoolQ Offline

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Post: #37
RE: Advice needed please: Queensland rules
Ahh perhaps this could be taken private as many posts here will not help the OP and is more of an argument about the "system" in general.
04-05-2016 12:51 AM
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Mutineer Offline

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Post: #38
RE: Advice needed please: Queensland rules
I live in Victoria, Australia and I have a friend that also has Sleep Apnea and is also on the Disability Pension and his GP referred him to a Sleep Specialist Doctor in Ballarat who arranged an overnight "sleep study" to be done at the hospital where he was diagnosed with Sleep Apnea. The sleep specialist doctor then arranged through Centrelink/Department of health/Ballarat Base Hospital for the supply of a brand new Respironics standard Cpap machine on a "loan" basis, 4 years later machine is still going strong and whilst the machine is still classed as belonging to the Ballarat Hospital it's basically his till it's worn out and of little real value.
04-05-2016 08:22 AM
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Rip and Rosie Offline

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Post: #39
RE: Advice needed please: Queensland rules
I wasn't sure about this, so I used Mr Google, and yes, it's the same for everyone in Australia.............diagnosed SA and untreated= unconditional licence cancelled, BUT once treated and proven compliant with treatment you get your licence back with regular medical reviews.

Now, I would have thought that your GP could have given you time to begin CPAP (mine did) before contacting the authorities.... as soon as I got usage oyer 4 hours per night he was happy.

Driving when sleeply is like driving with dugs and alcohol on board, and the accident rate is very high !!

I feel very sorry for you, but as a road user I understand the rules.

You need SA therapy right now to get your driving licence restored.
04-05-2016 09:10 PM
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Dafod Offline

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Post: #40
RE: Advice needed please: Queensland rules
Sandii, am I right in thinking you did/do not have a very good relationship with your doctor? I say this as my understanding of guidelines is such that the Dr should only contact the Dept of Transport directly if he/she believes, "where patients who are known to be an imminent risk to road safety continue to drive contrary to repeated advice". [Otherwise they are only required to inform you and you contact the Dept.] This is per the responsibilities guidelines under "Assessing Fitness to Drive, medical standards for licensing and clinical management guidelines", Austroads 2013.

Is there any other complicating factor regarding your ability to drive during the day that the dr might be worried about? Ie. Does the thyroid problem you mention result in significant fatigue?

Also, given it appears your existing relationship with this doctor has collapsed I am not sure why you don't go to the new doctor - if you have the results of the sleep study Plus accept the use of a CPAP, shouldn't this doctor be able to work with you? Assuming the new doctor acknowledges you have some level of Sleep apnea (based on the take home test) and you agree to use a CPAP (and demonstrate compliance) then I don't see how he/she wouldn't contact the Dept of Transport to have your license unsuspended and at least give you a conditional one. Would not this be the approach of least resistance given the major problems you are having?
04-05-2016 11:19 PM
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