East Anglian DriveAbility’s extended centre in Thetford successfully launches to help elderly and disabled drivers
East Anglian DriveAbility (EAD) has officially opened its new extended Thetford centre to high visitor numbers.
East Anglian DriveAbility (EAD), a charity which is part of Driving Mobility’s UK network of assessment centres for elderly and disabled drivers, has officially opened its new extended Thetford centre to high visitor numbers.
Isabel Coe, retired Centre Manager, officially cut the ribbon to celebrate the opening of the new training facilities and expanded waiting area facilities. The opening was also supported by Helen Dolphin MBE, chair of the EAD charity and highly respected accessibility campaigner. A high number of visitors attended particularly Occupational Therapists (OT) and fellow healthcare professionals who were keen to discover more about the latest services offered by EAD. EAD is currently expanding its services beyond driving assessments to include quality guidance regarding all forms of accessible travel and independent mobility.
Driving Mobility accredits twenty independent organisations which offer professional support and driving assessments to people who need to gain, or retain, the ability to drive following a diagnosis involving impairment or disability. EAD is part of this network with centres in Thetford and Colchester. In addition to guidance regarding adapted controls and wheelchair accessible vehicles (WAV), its OTs and Driving Advisors provide additional advice regarding mobility scooters, powerchairs and wheelchairs.
The open day showcased several adapted cars and WAVs from the EAD fleet which included a variety of specialist driving controls and disabled driver and upfront passenger solutions. Visitors were also able to meet several specialist manufacturers which included TGA mobility scooters, Autochair car boot hoists and the WAV convertor Sirus Automotive. The TGA mobility scooter test drive course proved to be busy all day with OTs trialing products and gaining new insight. CEA Mobility, Andys Kars and David Relph also assisted with vehicle adaptations during the event.
Yvette Bateman, CEO, East Anglian DriveAbility, comments: “Our official opening was a significant success for visitors and our charity. Attendees told us they gained so much from coming to the event and hence we now plan to hold an open day annually at either our Thetford or Colchester centre. It was a delight to welcome lots of OT students from the UEA who gained invaluable vehicle and product knowledge for future client prescriptions. Thank you to all the EAD team for organising such a positive event and we appreciate the support of several manufacturers who attended and added depth to our showcase. We are proud of our new facilities which give us the platform to expand services so independent mobility is achievable for many more people whether that’s in a car or any other mode of accessible transport.”
Derby DrivAbility delivers successful assisted driving open day
Derby DrivAbility has recently showcased its driving assessment and mobility services to healthcare professionals and the general public.
Part of the Driving Mobility charity network, Derby DrivAbility has recently showcased its driving assessment and mobility services to healthcare professionals and the general public.
Derby DrivAbility is located in a new custom-built centre and operates within the University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust. Its Occupational Therapists (OTs), Approved Driving Instructors (ADIs) ably supported by the Administration staff offer professional driving assessments to people who need to gain, or retain, the ability to drive following a diagnosis involving impairment or disability. Its first open day at the new premises provided the opportunity for professionals, families and disabled drivers to discover the range of services on offer and see the latest adaptations for assisted motoring.
The event was supported by specialist manufacturers demonstrating accessible and drive-from-wheelchair vehicles alongside adapted driving controls, car boot hoists and passenger solutions. Sirus Automotive, Allied Mobility, Des Gosling Mobility and Autochair were able to explain to attendees the value of their assistive solutions and how they work closely with Derby DrivAbility. Derby DrivAbility also appreciate the last minute support of N-tec Mobility who, despite not being able to attend, managed to provide two adapted vehicles for the day.
Visitors to the open day were able to discuss individual adapted driving needs on a one-to-one basis with the Derby DrivAbility representatives. Whether it was for personal needs, a provisional driver or client in care, visitors could view, assess and discuss the benefits and suitability of adapted controls and equipment such as left-foot accelerators, steering aids, assistive hand controls, ring accelerators and rotating passenger car seats and scooter/wheelchair hoists. There was also the opportunity to experience the static assessment rig at the centre which is used for clinical assessments and fitness-to-drive tests.
Liz Whiteman, Centre Manager/Lead Clinician comments: “I’m delighted that our first open day was a success. The atmosphere was positive and the Derby DrivAbility team engaged with a steady number of visitors throughout the day. It was fantastic to welcome back retired colleagues, friends and existing service users who have experienced a positive outcome and to meet healthcare professionals seeking guidance for their clients. We also welcomed families with teenage disabled children seeking assistance through to elderly drivers investigating easier ways to drive. The exhibits from external manufacturers added to the value of visiting – we would like to thank them for their support. On a lighter note, it was fun to watch the competitive side of many of our visitors in an attempt to see who could produce the quickest reaction times on the static assessment rig!”
Driving Mobility, supported by the Department for Transport
As a registered charity, Driving Mobility accredits a network of 20 driving assessment centres covering the whole of the UK. Many with outreach facilities, these centres include independent charities and NHS centres which offer professional information and assessment so disabled and elderly people can gain or retain independence.
Driving Mobility ensures that there are common standards, promotes good practice and offers training and education to all regional centres, whilst working closely with associated national organisations. These include the Department for Transport, Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency, Driver and Vehicle Agency (NI), Motability, NHS Trusts and the Police, along with many more valued stakeholders.
Driving Mobility is supported by the Department for Transport and its patron Baroness Thomas of Winchester.
One Big Day – Yorkshire Event Centre, Harrogate
Saturday 10 August 2019 – 9am to 4pm. One Big Day at the Yorkshire Event Centre, Harrogate provides the perfect opportunity to discover everything you need to know about worry-free motoring with Motability.
Saturday 10 August 2019 – 9am to 4pm
One Big Day at the Yorkshire Event Centre, Harrogate provides the perfect opportunity to discover everything you need to know about worry-free motoring with Motability. There is a huge range of cars, adaptations, Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles, scooters and powered wheelchairs on display and what’s more, admission is free!
One Big Day Harrogate brings together everything available on the Motability Scheme to make joining the Scheme as easy as possible. It’s free to attend and a great day out for the whole family. There will be:
- Over 100 cars, Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles (WAVs), adaptations, scooters and powered wheelchairs on display
- The opportunity to test drive adapted and non-adapted cars
- Motability Scheme advisors available to chat to
- Free parking, free tea, coffee or soft drink
- A children’s play area including a bouncy castle and more…
At One Big Day Harrogate specialist advice will be available from:
- Motability Scheme advisors
- Adaptation and WAV specialists
- Disabled Motoring UK
- Driving Mobility
- Kwikfit, RAC and RSA Motability
A full list of the exhibitors attending One Big Day at the Yorkshire Event Centre, Harrogate will be available closer to the event date.
CRM Platform drives change for national charity Driving Mobility
Driving Mobility appoints CRM specialists Silverbear to deliver its digital transformation programme across 15 individual Driving Mobility locations throughout England and Wales.
Driving Mobility, a nationwide network of independent organisations that offers professional advice and assessments for people who need to gain or retain independence through mobility, has appointed CRM specialists Silverbear to deliver its digital transformation programme.
The partnership will see Driving Mobility, which is supported by the Department for Transport and helps those returning to driving following accident or illness and those with a physical disability, incorporate Silverbear’s application management platform across 15 individual Driving Mobility locations throughout England and Wales.
Driving Mobility conducts around 15,000 clinically led driving assessments each year, a significant proportion of which are referrals from the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA). These are currently coordinated and booked via the postal system due to data security implications – a process that incurs significant postage and stationery costs.
Silverbear’s ability to transfer this entire process to a digital environment will not only expedite the assessment booking procedure, but also eliminate high assessment-related administration costs for both Driving Mobility and the DVLA.
Furthermore, Silverbear’s inclusion on the G-Cloud framework, part of the government’s Digital Marketplace strategy, means that Driving Mobility and the DVLA can manage bookings in a safe and secure CRM platform that has been approved by central government.
Edward Trewhella, Chief Executive at Driving Mobility, comments: “Integrating Silverbear is one of the steps that we are taking to ensure consistency and standardisation across the entire organisation. The project, which has full support from the Department of Transport, will help us vastly improve our interactions with customers, streamline our internal procedures and help take the organisation into a digital world. We’re delighted to be working with Silverbear and now look forward to taking the first steps on our digital transformation journey.”
Motability, a UK charity that enables disabled people, their families and their carers to lease a new car, scooter or powered wheelchair using their disability benefit, also accounts for a significant number of Driving Mobility’s 15,000 assessments, all of which are booked and managed using laborious manual methods. Silverbear Membership is expected to help reduce their administration costs and streamline the booking process for Motability users.
Carl Grieves, Chief Executive at Silverbear, adds: “Organisations such as Driving Mobility, many of which are using legacy CRM systems that are out-dated if not unfit for purpose, are realising the value that modern CRM platforms such as those offered by Silverbear can add to day-to-day operations. Equally, the importance of going digital in an increasingly digital world and creating resilient organisations using robust software solutions is now well understood, and CRM has become the backbone of this process.”
Driving Mobility now plans to integrate Silverbear within individual driving assessments. Currently, each assessment, which takes approximately two hours, is conducted by two people; one who sits in the front alongside the driver being assessed and one who sits in the back of the vehicle taking notes using a pen and paper, which are then typed up after the assessment has finished.
Using Silverbear, Driving Mobility will be able to avoid duplication of effort by adding case notes directly into the CRM platform via an electronic device, in real time, straight from the vehicle.
Phase one of the project begins in June and the new platform is expected to go live in December.
One Big Day – Westpoint, Exeter
The perfect opportunity to discover everything you need to know about worry-free motoring with the Motability Scheme. There will be a huge range of cars, adaptations, Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles (WAVs), scooters and powered wheelchairs on display and what’s more, admission is free!
Driving Mobility to showcase driving assessment services at Royal College of Occupational Therapists Conference
Driving Mobility OTs, ADIs and centre managers will be available to explain how the charity can support client occupational performance and help meet the challenges OTs face, in terms of facilitating mobility outside of the home.
Occupational Therapists representing Driving Mobility, the national charity which oversees 20 independent driving assessment centres across the UK, will be presenting their services at the 2019 RCOT Conference.
RCOT Annual Conference and Exhibition, stand 62. 17-18 June 2019, ICC Birmingham. #RCOT2019
Many with outreach capabilities, Driving Mobility centres include independent charities and facilities operating within the NHS that deliver professional assessments so disabled and elderly people can gain or retain independence. Each centre employs Occupational Therapists (OTs), Approved Driving Instructors (ADIs) and Administration staff so service users can gain, or retain, the ability to drive following a diagnosis involving impairment or disability. Individuals can self-refer or are signposted by the DVLA, Motability, Police and healthcare professionals such as OTs and GPs. Over and above driving assessments and advice regarding vehicle adaptations, centres provide a vast range of further information regarding accessible air, bus and train travel – all of which will be displayed on stand 62.
Driving Mobility OTs, ADIs and centre managers will be available to explain how the charity can support client occupational performance and help meet the challenges OTs face, in terms of facilitating mobility outside of the home. These representatives will be from two of the independent regional organisations within the Driving Mobility national network – RDAC and the William Merritt Disabled Living Centre.
Offering an interactive experience, there will be a vehicle simulator on the stand for delegates to try which will highlight parts of the Driving Mobility assessments. This feature is a replica of the equipment at many centres which is used to measure driver capabilities in a clinically-led format. By sitting in the driving seat OTs will understand more clearly aspects to consider when assessing client needs, wants and risks.
Edward Trewhella, Chief Executive, Driving Mobility comments: “We are delighted to be showcasing Driving Mobility services at the RCOT conference for the first time. Our interactive vehicle simulator and comprehensive information display will provide an opportunity for delegates seeking professional guidance in relation to independent mobility. Driving Mobility OTs work closely with fellow peers in the public and private sector to ensure their clients can benefit from inclusion and accessibility within the community. This effective relationship provides solutions to many common transportation issues and hence we look forward to forging new connections at the conference which will result in wider support across the UK.”