Work Conditioning/Ergonomic Assessment

Contact this department: (785) 229-8434
Fax: (785) 229-8344

What is Work Conditioning / Ergonomic Assessment?

Work Conditioning is:

A systematic program of gradually progressive, work related activities performed with proper body mechanics to physically and psychologically reconditions the client in order to facilitate return to full employment.

Ergonomic Assessment is:

  • Functional Capacity Evaluation – Matching Work and Worker

Functional Capacity Evaluation (FCE) is a physical test that measures an injured worker’s abilities. In the FCE, workers perform various activities that simulate on-the-job work. Those activities can then be matched to the specific tasks of a certain job. The FCE combines the highest level of safety with objective findings and, when necessary, significantly aids in developing an effective return-to-work program for injured workers.

FCE uses a unique approach to physical examination by allowing the worker to test for maximum objective strength without fear of injury. In this kinesiophysical method of testing, it is the therapist skilled in musculoskeletal function — not the worker — who identifies precise physical and functional abilities.

The therapist observes:

  • Muscle function
  • Movement patterns
  • Physiological changes
  • Safety
  • Worker behavior in one evaluation
  • Correlates physical findings with functional limitations
  • Provides specific solutions regarding when and what capacity that worker can safely return to work
  • Prework Screening – Matching the Physical Requirements to the Job

Prework Screen (PWS) are functional tests used to determine if an individuals’ physical abilities match the physical requirements of a specific job. The tests are based on the results of a Functional Job Analysis (FJA) to ensure job relatedness. The screening process insures a match between the worker and the work in a non-discriminatory manner. The PWS program has been developed to comply with all regulations put forth by ADA and Human Rights legislation. The ability to perform PWS at RMH allows you to:

  • Provide employers with a mechanism to make hiring decisions in a legal and non-discriminatory way.
  • Provides employers with employees that have the abilities to safely perform the work required in a specific job therefore reduced the incidence and severity of work related injuries.
  • Provides employees with objective information on the physical requirements of the job which can be used both at the time of hire and if needed for return to work decisions after an injury.
  • Functional Job Analysis – Identifying and Evaluating the Work

Functional Job Analysis (FJA) is a comprehensive, structured process of identifying and evaluating the physical aspects of work. A critical factor in developing an effective work injury prevention and management process, the FJA involves analyzing the worker, the work and the worksite. 

With the assistance of a worker who performs the job, the FJA objectively quantifies, measures, and categorizes the active components of the job, including the required movements, functions, forces, actions and postures. The FJA is an important component in injury prevention; it identifies risk factors associated with cumulative trauma injuries, and provides recommendations related to ergonomic modifications and other strategies to reduce or eliminate such injures.

Objective and comprehensive, the FJA results in principal outcomes:

  • Developing recommendations for eliminating risk of injury, such as hazards and stressors, by: 
    • Redesigning the workplace
    • Changing work practices
    • Training
    • Conditions
  • Designing a Prework Screen (PWS)
  • Creating a Functional Job Description (FJD)

The FJD catalogs the activities and physical, functional demand of specific jobs. Compliant with American with Disabilities Act (ADA), Canadian Human Rights legislation and other international anti-discrimination laws, the FJD includes:

      • Job title
      • Job objective(s)
      • Essential job functions
      • Non-essential functions
      • Equipment used
      • Significant work measurements
      • Critical demands
      • Possible modifications
      • Reasonable accommodations 

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