Functional Capacity Evaluation is carried out to measure a person’s ability to function in various activities, positions and tasks. The results are used to determine whether one could return to their pre-accident occupation or some other form of work. It is considered as an objective measurement of abilities and is carried out by a Kinesiologist or a registered Occupational Therapist. Car Accident Lawyer Ottawa Yegendorf and Associates, will guide you through the process and make sure that you are treated fairly.
What are the components of FCE?
- Physical Testing: Tests the ability to perform certain activities like sitting, walking, standing, kneeling and other bodily movements that are done throughout the day and maybe typical during a workday. Meanwhile, the assessor observes and notes your activity tolerance, such as length of time you can perform the activity, the maximum amount of weight that you can lift and whether any adjustments or modifications are made while doing each activity.
Factors such as balance, range of motion, coordination and ability to perform repetitive moments are also measured. The assessment is to check whether you can return to a certain job. So, the results of the physical tests are compared and contrasted with the physical demands of that job.
- Functional Pain: tests the pain levels of the person while they perform the task. This assessment varies from assessor to assessor but it is mostly dependent on self-reporting by the injured person.
- Maximum effort: tests whether the task was carried out to the fullest or terminated halfway through. It also determines whether the different components which were used in the testing were consistent or not.
Is FCE reliable?
Most of the evaluations are completed in a day and in less than 7 hours. It may not be the most reliable indicator of one’s ability to work as it only paints a brief picture and does not really mimic an actual workday or workweek. An individual might be able to perform some work, but as the week progresses their symptoms might increase. A person might feel fine in those few hours during the test but may experience discomfort in the hours and days to follow.
What to do if the insurance company asks you to attend an FCE?
In such a situation, your lawyer will advise you to refuse to attend, if there are circumstances, as long as the insurer is following the procedures under the Statutory Accident Benefits Schedule. During the test, put forth your best efforts but do not do any activity that could cause you harm or which you have been advised against.
While the test is on and after it, make note of how you are feeling and speak to your lawyer. In case you don’t have a lawyer, then get in touch with your insurance company or assessor and let them know if you are experiencing discomfort as a result of the test. If your insurance company terminates your IRBs then you should consult your lawyer about the options that are available to you.