If you are a regular reader of this blog, you will be aware that my driving licence officially ran out at the end of March as I have to have it updated every three years.
You will also be aware that I don’t have my shiny new licence yet due to the DVLA Medical Group making an admin error. An error that they have since apologised for. I likened them to an office of chimps a day or two before the apology, for which I am also truly sorry.
A day or two after the apology I received another letter from them advising me that they were contacting my neurologist and that this should sort everything out, but that it could take up to six weeks. That was back at the beginning of April.
It’s now six weeks later…
I have received another letter from the DVLA Medical Group stating “the information you have given us tells us that you have double vision (sic) so therefore we require you to complete a further questionnaire which is enclosed.” They go on to note “this questionnaire may appear similar to the one you have recently completed,” one? Try three, “but will provide us with important information from you that we currently do not have.” They then go on to tell me that I have 21 days to fill in the form, or else.
Actually, they do have all the extra info, because it is identical to the info I gave them three years ago. I wonder if the original form could ask if there has been any change in my medical circumstance since 2009, or maybe the original form could be reworked to be more comprehensive in terms of do you have eye problems, if not, go to question 6.
Or maybe… MAYBE… shock! horror! they could provide a secure online form that I could fill in from the comfort of my settee. They seem to be fine with me filling out my tax disc renewals online, why not my medical info? Then it wouldn’t matter how long the form is, I could tick a box to say a certain section isn’t relevant and be redirected to the next section.
Yes, it certainly could be a lengthy form, but it wouldn’t get lost and I wouldn’t have to fill it in four times, and it would presumably get processed a lot quicker.
Then comes the uncertainty. They want to know how I control my doublevision when driving. It’s a fair question and one I get asked by almost everyone when they find out about it. The stock questions and tickboxes they provide are: patch, glasses/lenses, prism or other.
I fall into the “other” category. I can’t help but feel that if I tick the “patch” box I’ll be off the hook, home and dry, scott free. The truth of the matter, however, is that my doublevision occurs when I look left so I don’t need a patch because most of the time I look straight ahead or to the right when I’m reading, and regular readers will know that I was refused lenses on the grounds that my eyesight was too good.
The way I control my doublevision is… wait for it…
I turn my whole head to the left when I look left, or I close one eye. There. Simple …and probably a hundred times safer than wearing a patch as I have an all-round awareness of my environment that I wouldn’t have with a patch.
This solution seems to amaze most people as if it would never have occured to them.
Now I have another nervous wait to see if this info amazes the DVLA as well.
In the meantime, fingers, toes and eyes crossed…