What is a Functional Capacity Evaluation (FCE)?
A Functional Capacity Evaluation is an objective measuring tool to describe one’s ability to complete various tasks following an injury, event, and/or trauma. Often times an FCE is completed in conjunction with Physical and Occupational Therapy and directly relates to one’s ability to return to work/employment.
What does an FCE consist of and how does it relate to me?
A FCE consists of multiple assessments either by a Physical Therapist or Occupational Therapist to objectively describe a client’s range of motion, strength, capacity to safely lift, push, pull, ambulate, and perform work related tasks. A FCE may take several hours to complete.
Following the completion of assessments, the evaluating therapists collaborate with the client’s physician and medical team to make a recommendation as to a client's ability to safely perform certain functional tasks. Often times, this is the basis for a return to work recommendation based on the most recent Standard of Occupational Classification (SOC) set forth by the Bureau of Labor and Statistics.
What happens after a FCE?
Generally after an FCE clients have new and up to date information on which areas of his/her recovery are going to be most important to focus upon to improve function. Some clients may return to work with physician approval, others may be referred to a work site evaluation to document any reasonable and medically necessary modifications to the workplace to support a return to vocational employment.