When evaluating your physical capability to perform at work, you may be required to undergo a series of tests, observations, and practices. These assessments are called functional capacity evaluations.
The final findings in functional capacity evaluations can help uncover how your condition (or any symptoms you may have) may impact how you do essential functions on the job.
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Reasons to Get Functional Capacity Evaluations
There are multiple reasons why an employer may require their staff to undergo a functional capacity evaluation. This assessment is particularly needed following an injury that happened in the workplace or a post-traumatic experience – to aid in the employee’s personal injury claim.
A functional capacity evaluation includes procedures and tests in varied approaches to determine a worker’s ability to complete job-related duties under different circumstances.
In today’s post, let’s take a look at what you need to know before undergoing a functional capacity evaluation.
Make Sure You Understand What a Functional Capacity Evaluation Is
In a nutshell, a functional capacity evaluation is a type of medical assessment ordered for an injured employee. This worker is getting treatment overseen by a compensation claim. A doctor usually requests the evaluation.
However, an employer, lawyer, and even insurance companies may request one under specific circumstances and purposes. Whatever they may be, the injured worker completes this assessment to attain a medical document.
This document outlines what they can and cannot do at the job because of the injuries they’ve previously obtained. The evaluations also help in developing strategies to make the workplace an adaptive environment for injured workers returning to work.
Who Performs Functional Capacity Evaluations
A healthcare provider facilitates this evaluation. These providers could be licensed physical therapists, physicians, and even personal trainers.
You May Need to Work with a Personal Injury Lawyer
Before starting an FCE, it’s always a smart decision to hire a disability or personal injury attorney to give you the right legal guidance. This is because the assessment taken during the FCE may not always be a good indicator of your capability to perform at the job.
A personal injury attorney can help you decide if functional capacity evaluations can help your worker’s compensation claim. They can also give helpful recommendations on what specific tests to get or check for any errors, inconsistencies, or inaccuracies during the evaluation.
What Happens During the Evaluation?
As we mentioned above, there are numerous types of tests, procures, and observational assessments involved in an FCE. Before a healthcare provider conducts any of these tests, the injured worker must first give a complete job description of their role in the company.
Also, it’s essential to let the healthcare assessor know what physical requirements are for the job. Some of the important areas evaluated in the process include:
- Examination of the injured areas of the body – this part of the assessment includes the severity of the inflammation, muscle strength, joint areas, range of motion, etc.
- Handling of material – this part of the assessment includes pushing, pulling, lifting, and carrying.
- Measuring of positional tolerance levels – this part of the assessment measures the employee’s tolerance levels for sitting, bending, kneeling, walking, squatting, and balance.
How Long Does the Evaluation Take?
The answer to this question will depend on different factors. There’s no set amount of time for how long an evaluation will be completed. The health assessor will inspect the severity of the worker’s injury. The assessment of the injuries will dictate what tests are needed to complete the evaluation.
You Can Get a Second Opinion
An FCE will contain essential findings that will affect your worker’s compensation claim. If you feel that you received an unfair result, you are entitled to get a second opinion. Make sure your personal injury or disability lawyer knows these types of decisions.
Key Takeaway About Functional Capacity Evaluations
If you must get an FCE, it’s vital to be as transparent as possible. The healthcare providers conducting the functional capacity evaluations are licensed and highly trained professionals. To save them and yourself the time, don’t attempt to exaggerate any symptoms or conditions just to increase your compensation claim.
Medical professionals can tell if you’re not being honest about your disability or faking a symptom.
What you must do is listen to your body and be truthful about your condition. To learn more about our functional capacity evaluation services, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us.