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Functional Capacity Evaluations

The Functional Capacity Evaluation (FCE) is a full-body comprehensive medical test used to measure an employee’s functional capacity and assist in injury management, whether the injury was sustained while at work or existed previously. The FCE test may be used alone to document existing impairments or may be used in combination with the Post-Offer Comprehensive test as a comparison against original, baseline data.

One FCE should be given at the time of injury to determine severity and legitimacy for optimum injury management. Another FCE should be administered during rehabilitation to determine progress. A final FCE should be conducted post-rehabilitation to determine the employee’s ability to return to his or her job.

At the time of injury, when compared against data previously collected, the FCE may be used to prove consistency and validity of performance and create realistic, objective rehabilitation goals, return to work recommendations, or work conditioning programs. This information is valuable in objectively moving the patient through the system in a fair and timely manner.

FCE will help you:
doctor helping patient

  • Implement an objective, timely, safe, and fair return-to-work process that is good for your company and your employees
  • Decrease work-related injuries and turnover associated with an injured employee returning to a position they are unable to perform safely
  • Lower workers’ compensation costs
  • Gather objective data to identify where employees may exaggerate symptoms
  • Decrease healthcare costs
  • Decrease overtime costs and disruption to production by returning trained, skilled workers back to their jobs in a safe and timely manner

The Importance of Functional Capacity Evaluations

A functional capacity evaluation is the best way to determine the physical capability of an employee after sustaining an injury. These evaluations provide a comprehensive review of an individual’s ability to work; some of its uses are:

  • Measures physical ability
  • Determines treatment program
  • Reviews efficiency of rehabilitation
  • Evaluates working capability
  • Attempts to predict return date

It is important that an employee returns from an injury only when he or she is fully capable of performing work again. Data collected from tests like this is pivotal to both the health of the employee and efficiency of the business. If your company needs to improve its system for determining the severity of worker injuries, a functional capacity evaluation service dedicated to this practice could solve your problems and maintain your business’s productivity.

What You Get When WorkSTEPS Works for You

A Partner to Meet Your Specific Needs

You have unique injury management goals that are specific to your organization and workforce, and WorkSTEPS’ Functional Capacity Evaluations offers you a variety of service options that can help you achieve them. Our evaluations can be used as a stand-alone service to document existing impairments or injuries as they happen. Or evaluations can be paired with WorkSTEPS Post-Offer Functional Employment Tests to compare data post-injury with original, baseline data so you can more effectively manage the rehabilitation process. Additionally, our FCE evaluations can be combined with our Transitional Duty Programs so we can more comprehensively work with you to manage your workers’ recovery and reentrance into the workforce.

An Information-Driven Approach to Optimize Return to Work

WorkSTEPS FCE takes the guesswork out of returning injured employees to work. Judgments that need to be made along the return to work process become less subjective because they’re informed by data about the extent of an employee’s injury, the progress toward an employee’s recovery, and the employee’s capacity to perform the essential functions of their job.

Highest Quality Testing Services

doctor helping patientOur rigorous testing process is administered by our licensed, trained, certified, and managed network. This ensures quality and consistency of our testing methods. Our trained healthcare professionals cumulatively perform thousands of FCEs each year, assuring quality, consistency and reproducibility of evaluation outcomes.

Manage Injuries Objectively

The ability to compare FCE data from the time of injury against baseline Post-Offer Functional Employment Testing data enables you to objectively evaluate whether an employee’s impairment is new (related to the injury) or was present at the time of hire. Comparison data can also be used to evaluate the consistency and validity of worker’s effort, enabling detection of symptom exaggeration. With these objective measures, you’re positioned to make fair decisions about treatments, rehabilitation, compensation claims and return to work.

Get the Most from Your Data

When combined with our proprietary software service, WorkSTEPS EHS DataHub™, WorkSTEPS FCE makes getting your employees back on the job even more efficient by giving you access to all your occupational health and safety data – including job demands and light-duty options – in one easy-to-use digital platform.

Confidence You’ll be Compliant

WorkSTEPS is committed to helping customers mitigate liability risk. All WorkSTEPS testing programs are continuously reviewed by a national employment labor law firm to ensure compliance with Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s (EEOC) Uniform Guidelines on Employee Selection Procedures, ADA, FMLA, OFCCP, and more. Additionally, our Functional Capacity Evaluations can often limit employer liability for pre-existing functional impairments due to the use of ‘individual assessments’ following AMA guidelines, as well as recognized medical procedures. We’re confident that our objective testing program, when implemented as designed, will withstand legal scrutiny and can help you virtually eliminate fraud and abuse.

A Partner, Not a Vendor

Your company, the risks your employees are exposed to, your procedures, and your culture are unique. We will work with you to design and implement FCE protocols that will provide you with the objective information you need to return employees to productive work in a safe, timely, and fair manner.

Contact the Functional Capacity Evaluations Experts of WorkSTEPS

Want to get your injured employees back on the job in safe, timely, and fair manner based on evidence-base evaluations? Choose WorkSTEPS Functional Capacity Evaluations and see why employers are already working with us to do just that. Contact us at (512) 617-4100 today to discuss what our partnership could look like.

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For more information about how WorkSTEPS can help you manage a hurt employee’s return to work, click here.

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