Learn About: Vocational Rehabilitation
The Ohio workers' compensation system can be confusing. Our learn about pages provide basic information about the Ohio workers' compensation system. You can find out more about the system from our Ohio Workers' Compensation Guide or our explanation of Ohio workers' compensation terms.
Learn about vocational rehabilitation:
- Vocational rehabilitation programs assist injured workers who cannot return to their original job due to their injury. For state fund claims, MCOs manage vocational rehabilitation but the BWC determines eligibility. For most self-insured employers, the self-insurer manages rehabilitation.
- Anyone can refer an injured worker to rehabilitation. To be eligible for rehabilitation, the injured worker must have allowed conditions that create a significant impediment to employment. The injured worker must also either
- be receiving or awarded temporary total, salary continuation, non-working wage loss or permanent total on the date of referral;
- have been granted a scheduled award under 4123.57(B);
- have received or been awarded a permanent partial award and have job restrictions documented by the doctor of record not more than 180 days before the date of referral;
- have reached MMI and have job restrictions documented by the doctor of record not more than 180 days before the date of referral;
- be receiving job retention services to maintain employment;
- have sustained a catastrophic injury, and a vocational goal can be established; or
- have been receiving living maintenance wage loss not more than 90 days before the referral, have continuing job restrictions due to their allowed conditions, and have lost their job through no fault of their own.
- If the injured worker meets the eligibility requirements, the BWC will determine if it is likely that the injured worker will benefit from rehabilitation and return to work. You can appeal an unfavorable BWC rehabilitation decision.
- Once an injured worker is determined eligible and feasible, the vocational rehabilitation case manager will develop a rehabilitation plan and submit it to the MCO for approval. Typical rehabilitation services include evaluations, work hardening, job modification, job placement and development, transitional work among others.
- The goal of vocational rehabilitation is to return the injured worker to work — either at the same job they had previously done with the same employer, or with a new job or a new employer.
See our Ohio Workers' Compensation Guide for more information about the Ohio workers' compensation system.