People with diabetes may benefit from a change to driving laws

Wed, 30 Mar 2016
People with diabetes, who have lost their driving licence "unfairly" after having a night-time episode of severe hypoglycemia, could be helped by possible changes to European driving laws.

Currently, drivers whose blood sugar levels drop dangerously low - more than once in a period of 12 months - are required to return their licence, due to European driving laws introduced in 2011.

At the moment of writing, the DVLA does not differentiate between hypoglycemic episodes happening at night and in the daytime, and this is one of the areas that has led to criticism from Diabetes UK, the charity, and experts in diabetes and driving in Europe.

They have highlighted that some people will only experience a hypo at night, and for them to lose their licence as a result is "unnecessary".

The European Commission will consequently be asking the DVLA to overturn its ban on those drivers with diabetes, before January 2018.

The chief executive of Diabetes UK, Chris Askew, said: "The European Commission is absolutely right to ask the DVLA to overturn the ban on night-time hypos, and we are delighted this is happening having campaigned for five years now to get this ban lifted and put a stop to some people with diabetes losing their driving licence unfairly."

"Beyond the unfairness, losing their driving licence has caused people all sorts of unnecessary stress and anxiety, even in some cases leading to people losing their jobs," he continued.

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