ARSRPE Conference Paper Database

Medications and driving: community knowledge, perceptions and experience

Williamson, A, Smyth, T., Sheehan, Mary, Siskind, V (Peer reviewed)

Vehicle Safety

2011

Medications and driving: community knowledge, perceptions and experience Amy Williamson, Tanya Smyth, Mary Sheehan, Victor Siskind Centre for Accident Research and Road Safety- Queensland, Queensland University of Technology There is increasing awareness of the potential for any medication that acts on the central nervous system to impair judgement and motor functioning, including driving performance. This paper reports community knowledge, attitudes and behaviour in relation to driving while taking medication/s. A community-based survey (n=316) revealed that of those who had taken any type of medication in the last 7 days (n=193), approximately one quarter (24%) had driven while taking a medication that they thought could affect them. A third (29%) of respondents who had taken any medication in the last 7 days reported that they would not change or stop their work-related driving, and 36% their non-work related driving because they were taking a medication that displayed a warning label about driving. Of those who had taken any medication in the last 7 days, 86 (45%) were taking a medication that was classified as being likely to have a warning label about driving, such as sedatives, tranquilizers, antidepressants, analgesics and anticonvulsive medication. This paper will examine the risk perceptions, knowledge and attitudes surrounding medications and driving with particular reference to those persons who were taking drugs with a warning label, and the barriers to following such warnings.