VRCs Who Play Doctor Need a Timeout

sadie1Recently, I attended a daylong seminar on Workers Compensation. One of the speakers was a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor (VRC). She had conducted an informal survey of other VRCs about what they do when there is “conflicting medical information.” Frequently, there are disagreements between the attending physician and the Department’s so-called Independent Medical Examiners (IMEs) regarding an injured worker’s work restrictions and treatment plans. Continue reading VRCs Who Play Doctor Need a Timeout

Work Conditioning & Hardening

conditioningMedical providers frequently send patients, particularly those who have been out of work for a while, to work conditioning and hardening to prepare them for returning to work or retraining. Work conditioning and hardening are performed in succession and are designed to meet a specific return to work or retraining goal. Usually an injured worker starts with work conditioning for 2 hours a day, 3 days a week, progressing to 5 days a week, over a 4 week period. Hours, days and weeks may vary. Continue reading Work Conditioning & Hardening

Physical Capacity Evaluations

physevalPhysical Capacity Evaluations (PCEs)* are scientifically designed to determine an injured worker’s physical limitations. PCEs typically last 3 to 6 hours over a 1 or 2 day period. Generally, they include a series of tests involving lifting, carrying, sitting, standing, walking, and material handling. The end result is a comprehensive report providing a very detailed analysis of physical abilities over a 40 hour work week. These reports are very important since they are used to determine ability to work for time loss, pension, return to work and retraining purposes. Continue reading Physical Capacity Evaluations