A functional capacity evaluation, or FCE, is performed to determine if an individual is capable of returning to work safely and efficiently after an injury or illness.
The FCE process compares the individual’s health status, body functions, and structures to the demands of the job and the work environment. Performed by a WorkSTEPS-licensed physical therapist, a typical FCE consists of a battery of one-on-one standardized physical and cognitive assessments that offer results in performance-based measures and demonstrates predictive value about the individual’s return to work.
FCEs assist employers, physicians, insurance companies, attorneys, case managers and vocational consultants in determining safe, functional levels for an individual to either return to work or to establish functional ability.
Who Benefits from a Functional Capacity Evaluation?
- Someone seeking to return to work after an injury or illness
- Someone applying for Social Security Disability benefits
- Someone injured in a catastrophic accident (i.e., automobile accident) for whom an FCE can determine performance skills and abilities related to resuming former employment or a new job
- Someone seeking vocational rehabilitation services
- Students receiving transitional services from school to the work setting to determine their skills and the extent of support required to perform in a job