Functional Capacity Evaluations
Functional Capacity Evaluation, also known as a Physical Capacity Evaluation (PCE), Functional Capacity Assessment (FCA), Work Capacity Evaluation (WCE), or informally as “functional testing”, is an intensive short-term (usually one day) evaluation that focuses on major physical tolerance abilities related to musculoskeletal strength, endurance, speed and flexibility. A certified Functional Capacity Evaluator at Fast Track Physical Therapy will use a battery of standardized tests, designed around key factors that include diagnosis, impairment, pain and functional limitation, referral questions, and, in some instances, the case resolution goal. FCE’s value to the injured individual is the focus on functional ability instead of the pain limitation associated with impairment. It considers speed, flexibility, endurance, skill and strength through the use of functional testing, MTM, and standardized measurements to assess job-fit status.
Functional Capacity Evaluation is not only a useful clinical tool, but a baseline for industry-standard results that clearly define an individual’s transition from injury to employment, and from disability to deployment. Functional Capacity Evaluation is used by physicians, case managers, and employers to transition injured workers from disability to function and employment. FCE is the single most reliable and valid measure to determine if a successful return-to-work is possible – as it is inherently a thorough and accurate evaluation process that documents an individual’s residual physical abilities, level of effort expended during testing, reliability of reports of pain and limitation, and it is an overall gauge of feasibility for employment.