Independent Medical Evaluations (IMEs) are examinations performed by a physician not involved in the person’s care for the purpose of clarifying medical and job issues. The IME may evaluate issues regarding causation, diagnosis, treatment, return to work, and impairment. IMEs are typically requested by workers’ compensation insurance companies, governmental agencies, or attorneys. Independent Medical Exams involve review of medical records and other claim related information, an extensive visit with the physician to determine relevant history, and a comprehensive report. In some cases, additional medical or environmental testing may be requested in order to address specific IME questions.
Once an individual is considered to be at maximum medical improvement from an injury or occupational disease, an impairment rating may be requested. The impairment rating is based on functional limitations and is calculated according to the American Medical Association Guides to the Evaluation of Permanent Impairment, 6th Edition.
A Records Review involves assessment of an individual’s medical records and other relevant information are examined regarding the injury, treatment, or other issues. During a records review, the physician does not physically examine the individual.
A Job Analysis (JA) is a summary of the duties and physical requirements of a job and is provided by a certified rehabilitation consultant. As part of the IME, REOH physicians may review specific JA’s to determine whether the person can perform the described job. This may include the person’s original job or alternative jobs. Specific work restrictions may also be recommended as part of this review.