Transportation can present a daily challenge for people with epilepsy. People with epilepsy may not be able to drive or may have restricted licenses, making it difficult getting to necessary places. Not driving may limit the ability to work or attend school, to socialize or participate in community events, or get to medical or other important appointments. While public transportation may be an option for some, it may not be an appropriate or accessible option for others. Below are various transportation options:
Transportation Services For Persons With Disabilities
The University of Florida’s Institute for Mobility, Activity and Participation has,with funding from the Florida Department of Transportation developed the Florida Senior Safety Resource Center (FSSRC), created a database containing over 800 transportation services. This up to date and user directed information for seniors, or persons with disabilities, addresses the need to find appropriate, acceptable and affordable alternative transportation options within their local communities. These services range from highly organized to very flexible and provide various levels of assistance, throughout all of Florida’s 67 counties. To view the alternative transportation options that are available in a specific county, go to http://www.SafeandMobileSeniors.org/FindARide.htm and click on the county name, it is that easy!
Availability of public transportation and related assistance varies by county. For example, in Miami Dade, you can visit www.miamidade.gov/transit/fares_golden.asp to see what initiatives are available for people with disabilities.
As noted above, public transportation may not always be accessible or appropriate for people with seizure disorders. For people with frequent seizures, it may be dangerous to wait for regular bus services at busy intersections where they may encounter danger during a seizure. Paratransit services are transportation services for people who cannot use the regular public transportation bus services. These services may pick people up at their homes or at specific locations. Paratransit services may be available for people who meet one of the following requirements:
- You cannot get on, ride on, or get off a regular bus because of your disability even when the bus is accessible; or
- You have a disability and can't use the regular bus system; or
- Your impairment prevents you from traveling to or from a bus stop.
To find out about paratransit services, contact the county transit authority where you live. When applying, people should specifically describe their disability or impairment in detail and explain why their condition prevents them from using the regular bus system. Notes from doctors may be helpful to support the information provided in the application. For example, in Miami-Dade, you can visit www.miamidade.gov/transit/rider_sts.asp to learn more about the Special Transportation Service.
Can you drive an automobile if you have epilepsy? Yes, if your seizures are controlled with treatment and you meet the licensing requirements in your state. Every state regulates the driver's license eligibility of persons with certain medical conditions. The most common requirement for people with epilepsy is that they be seizure free for a specified period of time and submit a physician's evaluation of their ability to drive safely. Another common requirement is the periodic submission of medical reports, in some states for a specified period of time and in others for as long as the person remains licensed. Click on the link below to read the requirements and information regarding driving in Florida or any other state