Medical Problems and Physical Fitness as Related to Occurrence of Traffic Accidents

by Harold H. Mitchell


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A survey of the literature on medical problems and physical fitness as they relate to the occurrence of traffic accidents. The published data do not provide sufficient evidence for an estimate to be made of the contribution of various medical conditions to the accident rate. There are also insufficient quantitative studies to form a rational basis for action by regulatory authority in charge of licensure for driving. If done at all, the current screening of drivers before licensure is apparently based on qualitative medical judgment. It is suggested that controlled studies be made to evaluate the contribution to the accident problem of the various medical conditions that might be significant, for example, epilepsy, diabetes, cardiac disease. These studies should determine the effect on the accident rate of removal of specified categories of diseased individuals. Particular attention should be paid to the number of licenses that would have to be denied for each category studied. (See also RM-5631, RM-5632, RM-5633, RM-5634, RM-5635, RM-5637.)

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