Planning for driving cessation in older drivers

Ying Ru Feng, Lynn Meuleners

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

This study examined the association between socio-demographic and driving characteristics and plans to cease driving in older drivers with and without suspected mild cognitive impairment (MCI), as measured by the Telephone Cognitive Screen (T-CogS) score. Lifestyle changes that participants had made to assist them transition to non-driving and their concerns about driving cessation were also examined. The study sample comprised 973 older drivers (65+ years) living in Perth, Western Australia. Information was collected on socio-demographic characteristics, health, cognitive function, driving-related characteristics and driving cessation. Descriptive and univariate statistics were undertaken to assess differences between drivers with and without suspected MCI. Multivariate logistic regression models examined the association between socio-demographic/driving-related characteristics and plans to cease driving. Increasing age (adjusted OR: 1.75, 95% CI = 1.22–2.50, p < 0.01), living alone (adjusted OR: 1.61, 95% CI = 1.09–2.38, p = 0.02), “suggestion to stop or limit driving in the past year” (adjusted OR: 5.07, 95% CI = 1.09–23.57, p = 0.04) and thinking it was “not important to continue driving” (adjusted OR: 4.80, 95% CI = 1.93–11.95, p < 0.01) were significantly associated with plans to cease driving. The odds were also doubled for drivers who reported that they were “less confident in their driving skills” than those who felt that their “driving skills were about the same” when compared to five years ago (adjusted OR: 2.29, 95% CI = 1.37–3.81, p = 0.01). Yet, only one-quarter of the drivers who planned to cease driving had made lifestyle changes as they transitioned to non-driving (26.1%, n = 134), despite most having at least one concern about driving cessation (92.2%, n = 474). Further research is needed to understand the decision-making process of older drivers as they transition to non-driving and help to develop strategies to promote their safe mobility and ease their transition when driving is no longer feasible.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)62-70
Number of pages9
JournalTransportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour
Volume72
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2020

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