What is a Functional Capacity Evaluation?
Functional Capacity Evaluations (FCE) are performed by a licensed physical therapist. An FCE is a comprehensive, objective test of an individual’s ability to perform work related tasks. The FCE can be performed following a work-related injury, to assess an individual’s ability to return to work, or to determine an individual’s level of disability.
The purpose of an FCE is to assess the individual’s physical capabilities by testing safe, maximum workload capacity while accurately documenting these observations. An individual’s physical abilities and limitations are compared to the physical and functional findings. The FCE is an important tool used to assist employers, physicians, insurance companies, attorneys, case managers and vocational consultants to determine safe, functional levels for an individual to either return to work or to establish functional ability. The FCE supplies information for adjudication of claims in short/long-term disability, provides return-to-work capabilities and determines ability levels for liability cases using appropriate medical standards.