Businesses are realizing that healthier employees are more productive and less costly. The key challenge in implementing cost-effective worker screening and health promotion programs is how to structure services in a manner that ensures safe job placement and motivates employees that would benefit most from healthier lifestyles.
A WorkAbility Fitness Screen (WFS) is an objective screen of musculoskeletal health, physical fitness, and job-specific workabilities. This is initially administered after a contingent job-offer is made. It establishes a baseline of physical fitness and determines an applicant’s suitability for physical job demands to prevent fraudulent claims, unnecessary healthcare, and needless work disability. The WFS includes a baseline health history and measurement of:
- Vitals (seated heart rate, pulse oximetry, respiratory rate, and blood pressure)
- Anthropometric measures of body mass index (weight, height, and abdominal girth)
- Quick screen of functional range-of-motion/flexibility
- Near and far vision screen
- Finger dexterity/wrist-finger speed (Sedentary or Light physical demands)
- Total-body manual dexterity (Medium or higher physical demands)
- Grip/pinch/pull strength
- Agility/dynamic balance
- Sub-maximal 8” step test of aerobic capacity (when appropriate).
- Job-specific lift/carry tests
Job analysis is required to validate any hiring cut-scores. WorkAbility eJobMatch provides employers with HIPPA-secured web-access to WorkAbility Summary reports that reference only the applicants’ specific workabilities compared to job demands. Applicants that are NOT cleared for FULL DUTY may be reviewed for job accommodation feasibility if they qualify for additional employment consideration based on disability or other protected status. All workers that are cleared for employment are provided with a detailed report card of their physical fitness results. Low risk or “fit” persons will receive positive encouragement to maintain their current fitness level, whereas higher risk persons will be encouraged to participate in appropriate wellness options. This WorkAbility Fitness Screen may be repeated when necessary to update the employee’s physical fitness profile and work abilities in response to specific issues such as:
- Worker reports physical symptoms or difficulty in response to assigned work duties.
- Worker is released to FULL DUTY after a 30-day or longer absence due to lay-off, work-related injury, non-occupational injury/illness, or FMLA leave.
- Workers that have been on LIMITED DUTY for 30 or more days.
Re-administration of the WorkAbility Fitness Screen in response to any of the above issues helps to ensure safe, ongoing job placement. The employee is provided with a report card that compares current status with past performance on prior WorkAbility Fitness Screens to motivate worker participation in appropriate wellness, medical or therapy services in order to reduce needless disability or healthcare costs. An ERGO Accommodation Study may be needed to assess feasibility of worker accommodation.
This service may be bundled with a urine drug screen to meet Drug-Free Workplace requirements. For more information, download Why post-offer fitness screens are an absolute necessity.