P.O. Box 160
Trenton, NJ
Contact: Mike Horan
Dave Weinstein
RELEASE: June 6, 2006

MVC Takes Leadership Role in Older Driver Training
AMA Conference Will Train MVC to Train New Jersey Medical Community

(TRENTON) – Continuing to ensure the safety and well-being of New Jersey drivers, Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) Chief Administrator Sharon A. Harrington, today, announced the Commission's selection to participate in the American Medical Association's (AMA) Older Driver Training of Trainers conference. One of only four states selected from dozens of applicants, MVC will join its partner, the Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation, for a two-day conference covering a variety of older driver issues that will be shared with physicians and other New Jersey medical professionals.

Training of Trainers is the AMA's second annual conference to address "Older Driver Training," which educates and teaches state and private motor vehicle organizations and the medical community to not only identify and address safety concerns associated with older drivers, but also share that training with others who work with older drivers.

"We're thrilled to have been selected for such an important, timely conference. MVC holds a strong commitment to safety and sharing knowledge and this conference affords New Jersey another opportunity to improve services and outreach to these motorists," Harrington said. "We very much look forward to continuing to take part in the discourse on these issues."

MVC representatives will attend the conference – to be held this year in Chicago on June 15 and 16 – at no cost to the State of New Jersey through an AMA grant that covers lodging and travel. The grant funding is provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

According to AMA data, the country's older driver population is on the rise. In New Jersey, about 1.8 million of New Jersey's nearly six million drivers are 55 years of age or older. AMA sees population changes like this as a growing public health issue, and MVC agrees that sharing knowledge will improve safety. Working directly with some of the country's leading researchers on older driver issues will position MVC’s representatives to share a wealth of knowledge with those who work face-to-face with New Jersey’s older drivers.

MVC applied for the grant to attend the conference in conjunction with the Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation, of West Orange. Joining the New Jersey contingent will be organizations from Indiana, Florida and Maryland. AMA's Older Drivers Training of Trainers familiarizes physicians and state motor vehicle organizations with AMA's program materials, which include the AMA's Physician's Guide to Assessing and Counseling Older Drivers. Five workshop modules are scheduled:
  • Laying the Foundation for Older Driver Autonomy and Safety
  • Identifying and Assessing the Medically Impaired Driver
  • Referring the Patient for Driver Assessment and Rehabilitation
  • Counseling the Medically Impaired Driver
  • Navigating the Legal and Ethical Issues of Patient Reporting

These modules are based on information gleaned from the Physician's Guide to Assessing and Counseling Older Drivers. A PDF of this AMA publication is available at AMA's Web site: www.ama-assn.org.