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The Power in Defining Physical Job Requirements

Tony Jones 2014 Posted by Anthony Jones

Over my 35 year career in Occupational Health and Safety, I have worked in several different but related roles.  I’ve been on the treatment side of healthcare, a safety and health director for a large manufacturing employer, and lastly, in MEMIC's loss control.  From experience I have come to realize that medical treatment, rehabilitation, return to work restrictions, and compensation are sometimes decided without a full understanding of the job’s physical requirements.

A simple, accurate description of the physical requirements of a person’s job will help the healthcare provider make a better decision regarding his/her return to work in a full or limited duty capacity. Making these job descriptions available to the medical provider reduces any miscommunication regarding the duties that are available and what the worker is able to perform.  How often are you asked to further explain what a job entails to a healthcare provider or claims handler?  Assigning restricted duty becomes a lot more efficient when a job description contains not only the regular duties assigned, but has a variety of other “restricted” duties that could be assigned if required by an injury. 

There is a simple tool an employer can use to fill in the gaps to better provide a more accurate picture of what your employee does. One tool is the Physical Capacity Requirements Form available on MEMIC’s Safety Director.

MEMIC is offering a free webinar to MEMIC customers on April 9th from 10-11 a.m.  This session will review and explain the use of the Physical Capacity Requirements Form to help augment your job descriptions.   To register for this free webinar or to find further information on MEMIC workshops and webinars head to the MEMIC website anytime 24/7. 

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