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Life Care Planning

Life Care Planning

Determining the current and future medical treatment, services, and equipment along with associated costs after a catastrophic injury or chronic health condition can be cumbersome and time-consuming. Vocational Expert Services, Inc. applies reliable methodology and industry-standard practices to review medical records, conduct interviews, consult with treating providers and medical experts, and research sources and associated costs to develop a comprehensive plan for care. A life care plan or life care plan review can be beneficial in litigated matters such as personal injury, medical malpractice, workers’ compensation, product liability, and dissolution of marriage.

Life Care Plans

A life care plan is a dynamic document based upon published standards of practice, comprehensive assessment, data analysis, and research, which provides an organized, concise plan for current and future needs with associated costs for individuals who have experienced catastrophic injury or have chronic health care needs. A life care plan may be utilized by both Plaintiff and Defense counsel to evaluate damages resulting from an injury or chronic condition.

Vocational Evaluations

A vocational evaluation is an integral part of any solid life care plan. Rehabilitation professionals at Vocational Expert Services, Inc. have first-hand experience placing individuals with disabilities in competitive employment and are knowledgeable in the aspects of work requirements. Only vocational experts are qualified to assess work-related issues and evaluate earning capacity for a person with a disability. At Vocational Expert Services, Inc. our certified life care planners are also vocational experts.

Vocational aspects in life care planning include:

  1. Determining if an individual can work
    • This determination would include vocational activity, cost, frequency, and duration or replacement of any training or assistance (such as job coaching or vocational counseling)
    • A Functional Capacity Evaluation (FCE) may be requested to secure objective data about an individual’s ability to perform various physical demands (such as lifting, standing, walking, sitting, pushing, pulling, etc.)

  2. Analyzing transferability of skills (skills acquired from past work that can be used in other work)

  3. Assessing an individual’s loss of earning capacity
    • Evaluating the loss of capacity to earn an income, loss of access to the labor market, and the cost of future medical care

  4. Conducting labor market surveys
    • Labor market surveys are designed to reveal current information about a specific job market

Frequently Asked Questions

A life care planner with training, knowledge, and experience in vocational rehabilitation and job placement removes the need for retaining two experts. A vocational expert can determine if an individual can work, analyze transferability of skills, assess an individual’s loss of earning capacity, and conduct labor market surveys.

Projected areas outlined in a life care plan may include medical care, evaluations and interventions, medical equipment and supplies, medications, prosthetics, wheelchair needs, home renovations, transportation needs, home health and facility needs, counseling, case management, and vocational needs.

Life care plans can be utilized in pediatric and adult matters by both plaintiff and defense counsel.

A medical cost projection (or future cost projection) focuses on the current and future needs of an individual and the costs associated with meeting those needs. Similar to a life care plan but generally more condensed, these reports provide valuable information for evaluating damages and can be useful for mediation preparation and settlement negotiations.

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