Physicians’ warnings to patients that they are potentially unfit to drive can prevent car crashes, reports a new study.


The findings indicate that the annual rate of car accidents among patients who were warned fell about 45% in the year after the doctor’s intervention, compared with the 3 years before.


The results of the research are presented by Dr. Donald Redelmeier, of Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto, and colleagues in an article in the September 27 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.


However the study also notes that emergency department visits for depression rose and patients saw their physicians less frequently after they were warned not to drive.


(Thank you to Tim Williamson for drawing our attention to this article).