Functional Capacity Evaluations (FCE, PBPCE)
An “FCE” is an evaluation consisting of an interview, physical screen, formal assessment tools and work related activities that are distraction-based in nature.
An FCE is typically used to provide the best available measure of a client’s ability to meet the physical requirements of predetermined vocational goals (JOI, TSJ, retraining). This assessment is also utilized as a means to test for baseline abilities prior to formal planning or as a determiner of a client’s ability to work “any occupation.” The “any occupation” assessments are more commonly used in long- or short-term disability cases. In addition, an FCE provides information on a client’s engagement in the process by assessing effort, consistency and their reliability of pain and disability reports.
This conversation can provide robust information related to physical limitations and disabilities, appropriate next steps in treatment, and also as a snapshot of performance for further adjudication. The duration of this evaluation is approximately 6 hours.
It is the opinion of Northwest Return to Work that an FCE should be provided by well-trained clinicians dedicated to this type of assessment and who are able to demonstrate certification and advanced training. These evaluations should be flexible in that they are directed to meet the needs of the referral source, as many FCE “systems” are rigid and do not accommodate individual situations. We believe the best evaluators follow the “Thinking Evaluator” model which will always best answer the referral questions posed.
- Safe and reliable testing processes.
- Rapid report completion (typically 7 days).
- Defensible functional capacities.
- Certified + advanced FCE trained evaluators.
- Customized FCE’s and specific referral questions including brain injuries.
- Evaluators that can be available to staff a claim both before and after assessment.
Brain Injury Functional Capacity Evaluation
Brain injuries are injuries to the head that can occur by concussion or mild, moderate of severe traumatic brain injuries. They require specialized assessment. The goal of a functional brain injury assessment is to determine the effects and vocational implications of such injuries, as well as to recommend potential treatment options.
Similar to above FCEs, Brain Injury FCEs can provide objective information about multiple aspects of cognitive function including safety, ability to follow instructions and memory. This testing will incorporate members of the clinic Brain Injury Rehabilitation Team as determined appropriate in staffing with the referring agency and the lead assessing therapist. Testing can be completed in a one or two day format. Additional evaluation fees and authorization will be required for each discipline added (neuropsychology, speech language pathology, specialty OT or PT evaluation).