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Education, Outreach and Events

Our education and outreach programmes are designed to promote awareness of medical fitness to drive standards.

Traffic Medicine Clinical Update 2021

On 24 March 2021, we held our annual Traffic Medicine Clinical Update online with over 200 attendees from both home and abroad. This year’s Clinical Update focused on the National Office for Traffic Medicine's international collaborations on medical fitness to drive issues.  The event entitled International Perspectives on Traffic Medicine was chaired by our Director, Professor Desmond O' Neill and featured Medical Fitness to Drive Experts from Australia, Canada and France. The event ended with an interactive questions and answers session.

Presentation speaker
Chair and opening remarks Professor Desmond O' Neill
Director, National Office for Traffic Medicine
Legal challenges to Medical Fitness to Drive standards Dr Jamie Dow
Former Medical Advisor on Road Safety, Société de l’assurance automobile du Québec
CIECA Working group on Medical Fitness to Drive Dr Lars Englund
Chairperson of the CIECA Working group on Medical Fitness to Drive
Motor vehicle collision risk among people with psychiatric disorders Dr Mark Rapoport
Professor in Geriatric Psychiatry, University of Toronto
Acting-head of Geriatric Psychiatry for Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
Collaboration on medical conditions and driving risk and how outcomes informed current review of the Australian Fitness to Drive guidelines Dr Sjaan Koppel & Prof Judith Charlton
Monsh University Accident Research Centre (MUARC)
Drink driving and alcohol interlock programmes in France Dr Charles Mercier-Guyon
Medical Doctor, Annecy, France

Traffic Medicine Research Seminar 2020

On 8 September 2020, we held our annual Traffic Medicine Research Seminar in through Zoom Webinar with over 100 attendees. The aim of this seminar was to provide an open forum for all those researching in areas related to Traffic Medicine. We welcomed speakers from a wide range of disciplines to engage with and to learn more about Traffic Medicine. The seminar was chaired by  Professor Desmond O'Neill, the  National Programme Director for Traffic Medicine.

The audience included undergraduate and postgraduate students, postdoctoral researchers and others who have an interest in Traffic Medicine. The day ended with an interactive questions and answers session.

Presentation speaker
Impact of Gender and Marital Status on car use among older drivers: Findings from the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing Dr Michael Gormley
Assistant Professor of Psychology, School of Psychology (TCD)
Process of developing an On-Road Fitness-to-Drive Test route and incorporating higher cognitive function within on-road testing Dr Tadhg Stapleton
Assistant Professor of Occupational Therapy, Head of Discipline in School of Occupational Therapy (TCD)
The experiences of older drivers in adopting new technologies in cars Dr Anuraj Varshney
Consultant Practitioner, Lead Associate Tutor at South East DriveAbility, University of Chester
The morning after the night before: Nightshift and the danger it poses to Irish road users Dr Réiltín Tynan
School of Medicine, NUI Galway
Mary Ward Essay Prize Winner 2020
Alcohol, Drugs and Driver Fatalities: Examining 2013-2017 Coronial Data Dr Aoife Kervick
Policy and Research Analyst (RSA)
Driving under the influence of drugs in Ireland: A toxicological perspective Dr Richard Maguire
Principle Analyst, Medical Bureau of Road Safety (UCD)
Closing Remarks Prof Desmond O’Neill
National Programme Director for Traffic Medicine (RSA/RCPI)

Scientific Meetings

Scientific Meeting: Stroke Rehabilitation and Driving with Prof Abiodun Akinwuntan

This Scientific Meeting took place on 24 January 2019 and focused on Stroke Rehabilitation and Driving and was led by Professor Abiodun Akinwuntan, Ph.D., MPH, MBA, a leading expert in this field.

Prof. Akinwuntan outlined his research and provided insights from his clinical experience with an emphasis on off-road driver assessment.

Professor Akinwuntan, is currently Dean and Professor at the University of Kansas School of Health Professions. Previously, he served as Dean for Research at the College of Allied Health Sciences and as a Professor of Physical Therapy, Ophthalmology and Neurology at Georgia Regents University in Augusta Georgia and as a senior lecturer at the University of East London. His research interests include using simulation and virtual technologies to improve daily living activities after neurological impairment and specialises in Driver Rehabilitation.

As promised, we have uploaded a webcast of Prof Akinwuntan and Prof Des O'Neill for those who could not make it in person on the day.

Prof Abiodun E Akinwuntan Presentation

Prof Desmond O'Neill Presentation

Prof Abiodun Akinwuntan

Scientific Meeting: Paediatrics and Traffic Medicine with Prof Flaura Winston

On 3 April 2019, our longtime friend and associate, Prof Flaura Winston from the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia delivered the keynote address at our Scientific Meeting on paediatrics, adolescents and traffic medicine. Dr Ellen Crushell, Dean of RCPI Faculty of Paediatrics introduced Prof Winston, whose presentation included her extensive research on the safety of early airbags. 

Dr Margaret Ryan, Programme Manager at the National Office for Traffic Medicine also presented her PhD findings about pre-learner driver education and the need for this to be made available for all second-level students. Prof Alf Nicholson delivered an informative talk focusing on the welcome decline of child mortality from road traffic crashes in Ireland.  

We were pleased to be joined by so many medical practitioners, including CEO of Our Lady's Childrens Hospital, Crumlin – Prof Sean Walsh and many other health professionals.

Prof Flaura Winston Presentation - Paediatrics, Adolescent Medicine and Traffic Medicine

Prof Flaura K Winston

Scientific Meeting: Traffic Medicine & Occupational Health with Dr Natalie Hartenbaum

On 4 June 2019, we hosted Dr Natalie Hartenbaum as keynote speaker at a scientific meeting on Occupational Health and Traffic Medicine, in the Dun Library, RCPI, No. 6 Kildare St, Dublin 2.

Dr. Hartenbaum is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine and the American Board of Preventive Medicine in Occupational Medicine and has a Master’s of Public Health in Occupational Medicine. She has been a certified Medical Review Officer since 1996. Dr. Hartenbaum has extensive experience in the clinical, corporate, and academic settings and is an internationally recognised expert in occupational fitness for duty with a special focus on transportation. 

Dr. Hartenbaum is President and Chief Medical Officer of OccuMedix, Inc, an occupational medicine consulting firm located in Dresher, PA. She is also Medical Director Sunoco, Inc, Medical Advisor Occupational Health/Chief Medical Review Officer of FirstLab and Medical Director of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.

The scientific meeting was opened by Dr Lynda Sisson, RCPI Dean of Occupational Medicine and chaired by Dr Declan Bedford, Chair of our Working Group on Traffic Medicine. The meeting featured Dr Declan Whelan, Chief Medical Officer at the CIÉ Group, who delivered a presentation on syncope and group 2, or commercial driving. Additionally, Dr Ed Loftus, Occupational Physician at the CIÉ Group hosted a case-based discussion on 'Challenging clinical cases and fitness to drive.'

Dr Hartenbaum's presentation (available below) outlined the processes of assessing medical fitness to drive for commercial drivers in the US and was followed by a panel discussion in which medical fitness to drive standards in Ireland and the US were compared and contrasted.

Dr Natalie Hartenbaum Presentation - Commercial Driver Medical Fitness in the US

Dr Natalie Hartenbaum

Contact us

Dr Margaret Ryan

Programme Manager, National Office for Traffic Medicine

Address: RCPI, Setanta House, Setanta Place, Dublin 2

Tel: +353 1 863 9788

Donna Noonan

Programme Coordinator, National Office for Traffic Medicine

Address: RCPI, Setanta House, Setanta Place, Dublin 2

Tel: 01 8639630