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Older Driver Safety Awareness Week, Dec. 4-8 (2017)
It is a fact of life that people age. And, with increasing age can come changes in physical, cognitive, and sensory abilities that can challenge a person's continued ability to drive safely. Although these changes are a part of normal aging, they occur individually and at different rates. Just as one plans for retirement, it's important to plan for transportation needs as driving skills decline.

When families get together over the holidays, this might provide an opportunity to have a nonthreatening conversation with our loved ones. When an older driver must make adjustments to drive safely or can no longer do so, families and friends can help if they have information about community resources.

Many occupational therapists are specially trained to evaluate a person's overall ability to operate a vehicle safely and can provide rehabilitation, if necessary. Specialists work with older adults as well as their families and caregivers, offering individualized assessment. They can identify each person's unique challenges and find strategies that will help them drive safely as long as possible.

In the Fort Collins area, organizations that can help evaluate the skills of senior drivers include CNS Adaptive Driving Solutions and Pro31 Safe Senior Driver. In addition, the City of Fort Collins is offering classes during the week of Dec. 4-8 to help older drivers, families, and caregivers navigate this potentially difficult topic. For information, go to p. 67 of the Winter 2018 Recreator.

The American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) is promoting Older Driver Safety Awareness Week, Dec. 4-8. AOTA recognizes the importance of mobility and transportation for older adults to remain active in the community, and AOTA works to ensure that transportation will not be a barrier.
 
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