Aging, Driving, and Public Health: A Therapeutic Jurisprudence Approach

Florida Coastal Law Review, Forthcoming

University of Miami Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2009-31

46 Pages Posted: 11 Nov 2009 Last revised: 13 Nov 2009

Bruce J. Winick

University of Miami School of Law

Alina M. Perez

Nova Southeastern University - Masters of Public Health Program

Date Written: November 10, 2009

Abstract

The problem of elder drivers experiencing impariments that diminish their driving abilities raises serious concerns for public health and safety. Although this is an important health problem, existing state practices are inadequate in several respects and impose unnecessary negative social, economic, health, and psychological consequences for many of the elder drivers whose driving privileges are restricted or terminated.

This article uses the approach of Therapeutic Jurisprudence to examine these issues by focusing attention on the antitherapeutic consequences of existing rules and practices. Therapeutic jurisprudence provides a useful complement to public health strategies for dealing with these issues. We seek to balance the public health needs of the community with the desire to minimize the negative consequences that existing practices pose on the psychological wellbeing of elder drivers and their families. We propose a comprehensive solution based on the Social Ecology of Health model augmented by principles and approaches of therapeutic jurisprudence. This model, which we call the Safe Driving Center, combines screening and assessment, remedial/rehabilitation interventions, education and training, individual and family counseling, and a comprehensive community-based approach for dealing with the problem preventatively. Whenever possible, the center will seek to persuade impaired elder drivers voluntarily to cease or restrict their driving by offering inducements and alternative transportation solutions.

Suggested Citation

Winick, Bruce J. and Perez, Alina M., Aging, Driving, and Public Health: A Therapeutic Jurisprudence Approach (November 10, 2009). Florida Coastal Law Review, Forthcoming; University of Miami Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2009-31. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1503485

Bruce J. Winick (Contact Author)

University of Miami School of Law ( email )

P.O. Box 248087
Coral Gables, FL 33146
United States
304-284-3031 (Phone)
304-284-3210 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.brucewinick.com

Alina M. Perez

Nova Southeastern University - Masters of Public Health Program ( email )

3200 South University Drive
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33328
United States

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