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Health, social care & voluntary sector staff
For safety reasons the DVLA (Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency) has strict guidelines about who may and may not drive.
If any of the drugs you are taking for your heart give you side effects which may affect your driving (e.g. drowsiness) then you are not allowed to drive.
If you ever experience angina while driving stop the car safely - immediately.
Group 1 Licence Holders: Motorcars and Motorcycles:
Group 2 Licence Holders: Lorries and Buses:
Your insurance will be invalid if you have to make a claim and have not notified the DVLA of any problems when required to do so.
If you are in any doubt about your fitness to drive please consult your doctor.
You must inform the DVLA that you have a pacemaker.
If you drive a car, motorcycle or light goods vehicle (Group 1) you must not drive for one week following surgery.
If however you drive large goods or passenger carrying vehicles (Group 2), you are disqualified from driving for 6 weeks. Re-licensing after this time will be with a short-term 3 year licence and you will require a cardiac assessment to qualify.
Restrictions on driving, and whether you need to tell the DVLA, vary depending on the reason you have an ICD and if it has ever fired. You must ask your doctor, or contact the DVLA, for guidance about your situation.
If you are a Group 2 driver (i.e. lorries and buses) you are permanently barred from driving and you must notify the DVLA.
Sometimes there are complications after a heart attack such as angina and arrhythmias. These have to be stable and symptom free before driving can be resumed.
If your work involves driving then you must inform your employer. The following guidelines do not take into account any special conditions your employer might apply in your contract.
When you can start to drive again depends on what treatment you received immediately after your heart attack:
The DVLA need not be notified in both of these cases.
DVLA need not be notified.
The DVLA and your insurance company must be notified.
Full information is contained in the Medical Standards of Fitness to Drive available from the DVLA.