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Newbie advice needed please -- DVLA
#11
Here in the U.S., driving laws and licensing regulations vary from state to state but states have to comform to general guidlines in order to get federal funding. Doctors in the U.S. generally don't report medical conditions to the government for the purpose of law enforcement (with some exceptions). This has more to do with the 4th Ammendment than with logistics. That being said, driving is seen as a priveledge rather than a right, so there are certain qualifications you must meet in order to keep and maintain a driver's license and be permitted to drive on public roads (e.g. take a vision test and if you need corrective lenses it is noted on your license and you must be wearing those corrective lenses while driving). No state has a requirement for testing for apnea (as of yet).

Here in the Buckeye State you can have your driver's license suspended for falling asleep at the wheel (ROMV - Reckless Operation of a Motor Vehicle) or being too tired to drive safely (DI - Driving while Impaired), but you have to be caught in the act by law enforcement. Commercial drivers are held to a much higher standard and in order to operate a commercial vehicle you must not only have a CDL (commercial driver's license), but also a valid medical certificate. This medical certificate is issued by a doctor who has examined you, reviewed your medical history and has declared you medically fit. This certificate must be renewed with a medical examination and review every two years. At all times you are required to report any medical condition that may affect your driving ability. I once had my medical certificate revoked due to a fractured forearm - the cerificate was renewed as soon as the cast was removed and the bone was completely healed. CDL laws are now similar from state to state, but just a couple of decades ago they varied widely.

Now back to the regularly scheduled program:

I get very concerned whenever I hear about drivers losing their license due to a dignosis of sleep apnea. I understand the safety concerns, but I wonder if apneacs are being unfairly singled out. Do you lose your license until you demonstrate treatment compliance when you are diagnosed with insomnia, clinical depression, diabetes, hypotension or any other of the myriad medical conditions that could adversely affect your driving ability?

Regardless of the law though; it is extremely reckless, dangerous and inconsiderate of the safety and well being of others to drive with untreated apnea.

Best of luck to you crazychef in getting your apnea under control and getting mobile again!
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#12
(01-17-2013, 01:43 PM)crazychef Wrote: hi

after some advice if anyone can help

recently diagnosed sleep apnea and have not started treatment yet, but will be next week

dvla have revoked license -- has this happened to anyone else?? if so how long after treatment started was it before your license was returned?

any help or advice gratefully appreciated


Thanks

Hi. Before i had my sleep test and diagnosis I did a lot of online research about driving. It seems you need not inform the DVLA as long as you stop driving when diagnosed and then inform them when you get treatment and are compliant. This way they don't cancel your licence. If they do cancel it then the problem is basically beaureaucracy! They will need to get info from your consultant and then consider it. I think it takes them about 3 months as they only have 2/3 doctors who look at the info. Hope you are luckier than that!
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