Functional Capacity Evaluation (FCE)
A functional capacity evaluation or FCE is a physical assessment that is used to determine a worker’s specific and safe physical abilities and limitations. This information can then be used to facilitate return to work recommendations, or to assess work readiness. The functional capacity evaluation is completed by one of our occupational therapists, physiotherapists or exercise physiologists who are highly skilled in the delivery and interpretation of this physical assessment.
What does a functional capacity evaluation (FCE) involve?
- A functional capacity evaluation is typically completed in the Advantage Injury Management Services offices, where our standardized equipment can be used to complete the assessment. However, where required, our staff will complete a functional capacity evaluation at your worksite.
- A functional capacity evaluation is usually 1.5 to 2 hours in duration, which includes an interview and completion of a battery of standardized physical assessment tasks.
- Worker will be required to attempt a range of tasks such as lifting, carrying, stepping, squatting, kneeling and reaching.
- The workers heart rate and blood pressure will be measured to ensure they remain safe during the physical assessment.
- Feedback about safe manual handling and postures will be provided throughout the assessment to ensure that all tasks are completed in a safe manner.
- On completion of the assessment our occupational therapist, physiotherapist or exercise physiologist will provide a details report summarizing the results of the assessment, and providing clear recommendations and guidelines.
What should I wear?
As a functional capacity evaluation is a physical assessment, it is advisable to wear clothing that you can easily move in, for example t-shirt, shorts and running shoes. Alternatively you may choose to wear your normal work attire, such as work boots.
When to use a functional capacity evaluation?
- As a pre-employment screen to ensure the worker meets a range of physical criteria such as lifting limits and safe working postures.
- To determine an employee’s physical capabilities and limitations for work following an injury.
- To determine whether an employee is able to complete their work tasks following an injury or illness.
What are the benefits of a functional capacity evaluation?
A functional capacity evaluation can be extremely useful in a range of situations, such as:
- Assists in developing guidelines and recommendations for a safe return to work and/or suitable duties plan.
- Determines a workers readiness to return to normal duties, suitable duties or specific work roles.
- Assists in identifying consistencies or abnormal presentations / behaviours following an injury.
- To provide recommendations regarding the need for strengthening or manual handling training.
- To communicate long term physical restrictions.
- Providing an understanding of what the employee’s safe limits are within their work environment given their injury.
If you would like more information or to book a functional capacity evaluation, simply contact us.