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Home Breaking 168,000 drivers with medical conditions waiting for licence as DVLA misses 90-day target

168,000 drivers with medical conditions waiting for licence as DVLA misses 90-day target

Thousands of drivers with medical conditions are continuing to face long delays with their driving licence application or renewal. Julie Lennard, chief executive of the DVLA, told MPs on Thursday (24 November 2022), that 168,000 medical driving licence applications were still being processed, as of 23 November. A medical driving licence is issued to a driver who suffers from a condition that needs to be declared to the DVLA. This can include diabetes, sleep apnoea, epilepsy or a heart condition. The DVLA pledged in its Business Plan 2022-23 that it would return to ‘normal’ processing times for medical driving licence applications by September, following long delays caused by the Covid-19 pandemic and strike action. DVLA misses 90-day target Prior to the pandemic, 90 per cent of medical driving licence applications were processed within 90 days. However, data uncovered shows that the Government agency has failed to return to that target. Between 1 September 2022 and 16 September 2022 – the date of a Freedom of Information (FOI) request – a total of 48,409 medical licensing decisions were made, with 30,304 (62.5 per cent) of those decisions being made within 90 days of the case being opened. Medical driving licence applications make up a significant proportion (70.7 per cent) of those drivers waiting to have their licence application processed. As of 16 September 2022, there were a total of 300,454 driving licence applications (including car/motorcycle and bus/lorry applications), being processed. Of those, 212,642 applications were medical driving licence applications. This compares to 39.2 per cent in March 2022 when there were 336,759 medical driving licence applications out of a total of 857,816 applications that needed to be processed. Driving Licence At the peak of the backlog, there were 1.1 million applications (medical and standard) in the system in September 2021. A report by the National Audit Office (NAO) earlier this month showed that of the 24.3 million applications the DVLA processed between April 2020 and September 2022, 3.3 million took longer than normal. Enquiries from customers about their driving licence applications increased sevenfold during the pandemic, and a high number went unanswered, peaking at 5.6 million in June 2021, the report said. The number of customer complaints to the DVLA also increased during the pandemic, from around 4,300 in 2019-20 to more than 31,900 in 2021-22. The DVLA has spent £24 million and forecasts it will spend a further £10 million on preparing and renting two new offices, recruiting 362 additional full-time equivalent staff, and making overtime payments to staff. Earlier this year there was also a change in the law to enable more healthcare professionals to complete medical questionnaires.

168,000 Drivers With Medical Conditions Waiting For Licence As DVLA Misses 90-day Target

168,000 Drivers With Medical Conditions Waiting For Licence As DVLA Misses 90-day Target
168,000 Drivers With Medical Conditions Waiting For Licence As DVLA Misses 90-day Target
168,000 Drivers With Medical Conditions Waiting For Licence As DVLA Misses 90-day Target
168,000 Drivers With Medical Conditions Waiting For Licence As DVLA Misses 90-day Target
168,000 Drivers With Medical Conditions Waiting For Licence As DVLA Misses 90-day Target

168,000 Drivers With Medical Conditions Waiting For Licence As DVLA Misses 90-day Target

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