The Safety Cycle
The first step of a great safety program is identifying and finding solutions for problem areas. An ergonomically designed program will enable your business to identify risk factors, recommend solutions, initiate training and education while working with the employees, supervisors and management to keep the workplace safe. Part of this analysis will also identify the essential job functions for each job classification so that WorkSTEPS® testing can be initiated.
Post-offer, Pre-employment Testing
Working with the nationally recognized WorkSTEPS® testing protocols Pre-employment Testing allows a company to make sure it is hiring a workforce that is able to complete the functional demands of the job safely. This 1.5 to 2 hour test gathers extensive baseline data, including over 30 measurements, to determine a candidate’s ability to perform physical requirements safely. Pre-employment testing identifies cumulative trauma syndromes or disease processes (or their increases) and qualifies legitimate employees. This test gives a pass/fail or accommodation recommendations. The baseline information can be used by medical providers to establish pre-injury status to negate paying for rehab services that are fraudulent or not based upon achievable functional goals.
This test is administered post-offer, with employment being conditional upon applicant’s ability to safely perform the essential job functions.
A Carpal Tunnel Test of approximately 30 minutes may be included as part of the Pre-employment test or Fit for Duty Test if indicated.
Re-testing the Injured Worker
If an accident occurs, WorkSTEPS® provides a post-injury test. This would help to determine the legitimacy of the claim and give valuable information to the treating physician. By comparative analysis of the data collected pre-injury and post-injury, WorkSTEPS® is able to give objective information regarding the claim. The information gathered would also help to identify for the employer and treating physician which portion of the essential functions of the worker’s job they would still be able to complete safely. This would help the employer decrease cost and reduce lost time.
Rehabilitation and the Physician
By working together and sharing data, the Physician and Rehab team are able to more efficiently facilitate the employee’s rehab and return them to work more quickly. Utilizing objective data regarding what the employee is able to safely perform and comparing this information with a clear picture of what the employee has been hired to do, the physician will be able to recommend specifically what portion of the essential functions of the job the employee can be released for in a modified duty position.
Fit for Duty Testing
Following complete rehab and prior to full return to work after an injury or an extended absence of an employee from work, it is wise to re-test the employee and make sure they are ready for full duty and are able to safely complete all essential functions of their job. This test results in pass/fail or accommodation recommendations.
Return to Work
By utilizing this system of ergonomic analysis and WorkSTEPS® testing, you will be able to get your employees back to work more quickly and more safely.