PERAC Disability Unit - Comprehensive Medical Evaluation Process
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Disability Unit



     After a member retires for accidental or ordinary disability, his or her case must be reviewed periodically by a Nurse Case Manager in PERAC’s Disability Unit. PERAC may require a retiree to be evaluated once per year during the first two years after retirement and once every three years thereafter. A Comprehensive Medical Evaluation (CME) will also be scheduled upon the written request of a retiree. No member will be evaluated more frequently than once in any twelve-month period.

Review of Retiree Medical Records

For each retiree whose case is being reviewed, a PERAC Nurse Case Manager will initially examine PERAC’s files and all updated information submitted by the retiree and the retiree’s retirement board to determine whether or not there is a need for a CME to be conducted by a physician.

     The medical records pertaining to examinations, tests and studies performed since a member’s disability retirement became effective are of crucial importance. With access to all up-to-date medical information, PERAC’s Disability Unit is more able to make an assessment without requiring the duplication of medical tests and studies to produce relevant data.

     The possible outcomes of a records review by a nurse case manager are:

  • The catastrophic nature of a retiree’s illness or injury is such that he/she does not need to be scheduled for any further review of records or any comprehensive medical evaluations in the future.
  • The retiree is currently unable to perform the essential duties of his/her former position or a similar job. The retiree will not be scheduled for a comprehensive medical evaluation. The retiree may be scheduled for another records’ review in the future.
  • A nurse case manager may find that a comprehensive medical evaluation must be scheduled in order to complete an assessment of the retiree’s current ability to perform the essential duties of the position from which he/she retired or a similar job, with or without rehabilitation.
Comprehensive Medical Evaluation Appointment

     A comprehensive medical evaluation may include mental or physical examinations, vocational testing, meetings and consultations with medical professionals, including a retiree’s treating physician and vocational rehabilitation counselors. The goal is to provide objective data pertaining to a retiree’s ability to safely perform the essential duties of his/her former or similar job and whether or not a return to employment is likely to be facilitated by participation in a rehabilitation program.

     The physician who coordinates this evaluation process will have copies of all of the available medical information, a copy of the current job description associated with the position the member held at the time of retirement. If the member is a retired police officer or firefighter, a copy of the Medical Standards established by the Commonwealth’s Human Resources Division for those positions will also be given to the physician.

     The physician will submit his findings in a written report to PERAC’s Disability Unit. If the physician has concluded that the retiree may benefit from rehabilitation, the doctor will include a rehabilitation plan with the report.

Comprehensive Medical Evaluation Reports are Reviewed by PERAC Nurse Case Manager

The comprehensive medical evaluation process has three possible outcomes:

  • A retiree may be found able to perform the essential duties of the job from which he or she retired or a similar position in the same department. In this instance, PERAC’s Disability Unit will schedule a restoration-to-service examination to certify as to the retiree’s ability to perform these essential duties.
  • A retiree may be found unable to perform the essential duties of the position from which he/she retired or a similar position, with or without rehabilitation. In this instance, the retiree will be re-evaluated by a PERAC Nurse Case Manager in the future.
  • A retiree may be found able to perform the essential duties of the job from which he or she retired or a similar position, with rehabilitation. In this instance, the physician who conducted the comprehensive medical evaluation will recommend a rehabilitation program that focuses on returning the retiree to work. The plan must be reasonable and cost effective and approved by PERAC’s Disability Unit before being implemented
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