Functional Capacity Evaluation Costs
Written by Craig B

Functional Capacity Evaluation Costs 2024

The cost of a Functional Capacity Evaluation (FCE) can vary depending on several factors, read on to learn more.

Average Costs:

  • Range: $871 to $916 (based on MDsave data)
  • National average: Around $1,786 (according to various sources)

Factors Affecting Cost:

  • Location: Costs tend to be higher in urban areas compared to rural areas.
  • Complexity of the evaluation: More extensive evaluations with additional tests or longer durations will naturally cost more.
  • Type of FCE: Work simulator tests usually cost more than paper-and-pencil assessments.
  • Insurance coverage: Your insurance might cover some or all of the cost, depending on the policy and reason for the evaluation.
  • Facility fees: Different clinics or centers might have varying overhead costs reflected in their pricing.

Cost Breakdown by Services:

  • Initial consultation: Around $150-$250
  • Physical exam and history review: $100-$200
  • Functional tests: Varies depending on tests used, potentially ranging from $500-$1,000
  • Report writing and analysis: $100-$200

Additional Costs:

  • Travel expenses: If the evaluation facility is not near you, you might incur travel costs.
  • Lost wages: If you miss work for the evaluation, you might lose wages depending on your employer’s policy.

Tips for Saving Money:

  • Check your insurance coverage: Before scheduling an FCE, inquire with your insurance provider to understand your coverage and potential out-of-pocket costs.
  • Shop around and compare prices: Get quotes from multiple FCE providers in your area to compare costs and services offered.
  • Ask about payment plans: Some facilities offer payment plans to help spread out the cost.
  • Consider alternatives: Depending on the reason for the FCE, there might be less expensive alternative assessments available. Discuss options with your doctor or the requesting party.

Important Note:

  • Choosing the right FCE provider is crucial. Look for a qualified and experienced facility with a good reputation. Ask about their certifications, staff qualifications, and experience with similar cases.
  • Don’t prioritize cost over quality. While saving money is important, ensuring a thorough and accurate evaluation is crucial for its intended purpose.

What Is A Functional Capacity Evaluation

Here’s what FCEs typically involve:

  • Initial Consultation: Discussing your medical history, job details, and reason for the evaluation.
  • Physical Exam: Assessing your range of motion, strength, flexibility, and other physical capabilities.
  • Functional Tests: Performing simulated work tasks or activities relevant to your situation. These might include lifting, carrying, pushing, pulling, climbing stairs, reaching, bending, squatting, and more.
  • Psychological Assessment (Optional): Evaluating factors like pain perception, motivation, and coping skills that might influence your functional abilities.
  • Report Writing: The evaluator compiles a detailed report summarizing your strengths, limitations, and overall functional capacity in relation to the specific demands assessed.

Here are some common reasons for an FCE:

  • Return to work after injury or illness: To determine if you can safely and effectively perform your previous job duties.
  • Disability claims: To assess your limitations and whether they qualify for disability benefits.
  • Vocational rehabilitation: To identify suitable job options based on your functional abilities.
  • Personal injury lawsuits: To document physical limitations resulting from an accident or injury.

Benefits of FCEs:

  • Objective assessment: Provides a standardized and objective evaluation of your functional abilities.
  • Improved communication: Facilitates communication between healthcare professionals, employers, and legal parties involved.
  • Informed decisions: Helps individuals, employers, and insurance companies make informed decisions about work suitability, disability claims, and rehabilitation plans.

Remember: An FCE is not a pass/fail test. It provides a detailed picture of your functional capacity and limitations, allowing for appropriate decisions and recommendations based on your specific situation.

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