Research, Links, and Publications

The following research and disability management articles (PDFs and links) are provided for the information of CSPDM Members. It is our intention to continue to add to this list and build a library of leading-edge research and disability management-related articles as a service to our members. If you have recommendations for articles, please forward a PDF or link for consideration to Sheena Cook, Coordinator of Membership Services sheena@cspdm.ca

Articles, Publications, Research Papers

Research on prognostic factors for RTW used in WSIB case management model
In the early 2000s, an IWH study of 900 injured workers in Ontario probed for the factors that predict the duration of disability. It found four factors—measures of functional status, worker recovery expectations, changes in pain severity over time, and workplace offers of modified work—were strongly prognostic. That information has been incorporated by the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) into its case management practices, as told by a new impact case study.

Effective workplace return-to-work interventions are multifaceted: IWH review
Evidence suggests packages of differen types of interventions improve RTW success. Effective workplace programs to help injured and ill workers return to their jobs are multi-faceted. hey offer some combination of health services, return-to-work (RTW) coordination and work modifications. That’s according to a recent systematic review update conducted by the Institute for Work & Health (IWH) and the Institute for Safety, Compensation and Recovery Research (ISCRR). It also finds work-related cognitive behavioural therapy improves RTW for workers with mental health conditions.

Cooperation of return-to-work professionals: the challenges of multi-actor work disability management
Article in Disability and Rehabilitation, July 2016

Return to Work: A Foundational Approach to Return to Function
IAIABC Disability Management and Return to Work Committee, April 19, 2016

The IRSST’s (Occupational Health and Safety Research Institute) scientific activities are concentrated in seven research fields; accidents, chemical substances and biological agents, musculoskeletal disorders, noise and vibration, protective equipment, occupational rehabilitation, safety of industrial tools, machines and processes. The Institute is located in Montreal (QC), Canada. At their website more than 1000 research reports are available for free download.

It Pays to Support Disabilities
By Wallace Immen, The Globe and Mail, March 2007, Republished by workopolis.com
Disabled workers have much to offer.

 Mental Health: A Workplace Guide (html of brochure)
Published in association with Rogers Media Inc, 2006
This guide can help your workplace understand what mental illnesses are, how they affect people, and what they mean for your business. More importantly, it outlines ways to support workers suffering from anxiety, depression and other disorders.

What You Need to Know About Mental Health: A Tool for Managers
By Allison P. Cowan and Judith L. MacBride-King, 2005. (Made available by the Conference Board of Canada – sign-in requested)
This tool have been developed to help managers learn more about mental health issues. It provides information and advice on preventing and recognizing mental health problems, getting help for employees, and planning for their return to work.

Human Rights and the Return to Work: The State of the Issue
Research presented to the Canadian Human Rights Commission
By Marie-Claude Chartier / April 26, 2006

Chronic Pain Up Almost 40 Percent Among U.S. Workers in Past Decade
But Most Employees in Pain Still Go to Work, Benchmark Study Finds
RARITAN, N.J., Jan 30, 2007 / PRNewswire/
Persistent, chronic pain has risen dramatically among full-time U.S. workers in the past 10 years, but workers today opt to go to their jobs rather than call in sick, leading to a growing trend of presenteeism – a negative impact on work despite being physically present at the job. These data, released today, are from a 2006 national survey conducted by Harris Interactive® on “Pain in the Workplace” , sponsored by PriCara ™, Unit of Ortho-McNeil, Inc., and conducted in partnership with the National Pain Foundation (NPF). The survey was an update to the 1996 Louise Harris & Associates poll on the subject, sponsored by Orth-McNeil Pharmaceutical, Inc.

Universalism versus targeting: The vulnerability of social insurance and means-tested minimum income protection in 18 countries, 1990-2002
(Kenneth Nelson; Swedish Institute for Social Research, Stockholm University; 2007)
The stagnation and retrenchment of social policies in recent decades raise considerable interest and concern in writings on the welfare state. This study examines differences in the development of mean-tested benefits and social insurance provisions. Questions relating to the measurement of policy retrenchment and the vulnerability of social benefits are addressed. Two conflicting hypotheses are discerned: one stating that the development of means-tested benefits resembles that of social insurance; and another more recent one claiming that the evolution of means-tested benefits follows a unique patter. The empirical analyses are based on institutional data on the level of social benefits. It is shown that social insurance stands a better change of surviving periods of retrenchment and that the greater vulnerability of means-tested benefits is related to the organization of social insurance provisions.

Social security pensionable ages in OECD countries: 1949-2035
(John Turner; AARP Public Policy Institute, Washington, DC; 2007)
This paper examines the pensionable or early retirement age in social security in 23 OECD countries over the years 1949-2035. The policies for future years are those in current law, with some not being fully effective until 2035. The paper documents a pattern of decreasing pensionable ages that reversed in the 1990s, with many countries raising pensionable ages since the beginning of that decade, though generally with future effective dates. Pensionable-age policy provides insight into broader issues in social policy, such as whether social policies across countries have converged over time. The paper also examines the time pattern in the movement toward gender equality in social programmes.

Alternative funding mechanisms for workers’ compensation: An international comparison
(Robert W. Klein and Gregory Krohm; Georgia State University, Atlanta; and International Association of Industrial Accident Boards and Commission, Madison, Wisconsin, United States; 2006)

Countries vary greatly with respect to how they fund workers’ compensation systems in terms of the sources of funds, the mechanisms used, and the allocation of system costs among employers and others. These different funding approaches can have significant implications for system performance, including employers’ incentives to promote workplace safety. Government officials and other stakeholders have a strong interest in systems in other jurisdictions as they consider improvements to their own schemes. This paper examines the major alternative approaches to funding compensation for work-related injuries and illnesses, their rationales, and their administrative and behavioural consequences. We discuss the relative advantages and disadvantages of different systems and the trend toward more refined, actuarially based approaches intended to promote greater equity and efficiency.

Do occupation and work conditions really matter? A longitudinal analysis of psychological distress experience among Canadian workers
Alain Marchand, Andrée Demers, Pierre Durand Sociology of Health & Illness Vol. 27 No. 5 2005 ISSN 0141-9889, pp. 602-627

This study analyses the relationship between occupation, work conditions and the experience of psychological distress within a model encompassing the stress promoted by constraints-resources embedded in macrosocial structures (occupational structure), structures of daily life (workplace, family, social networks outside the workplace) and agent personality (demography, physical health, psychological traits, life habits, stressful childhood events). Longitudinal data were derived from Statistics Canada’s National Population Health Survey and comprised 6,359 workers nested in 471 occupations, followed four times between 1994-1995 and 2000-2001. Discrete time survival multilevel regressions were conducted on first and repeated episodes of psychological distress. Results showed that 42.9 per cent of workers had reported one episode of psychological distress and 18.7 per cent had done so more than once. Data supported the model and challenged the results of previous studies. The individual’s position in the occupational structure plays a limited role when the structures of daily life and agent personality are accounted for. In the workplace, job insecurity and social support are important determinants, but greater decision authority increases the risk of psychological distress. Workplace constraints-resources are not moderated either by the other structures of daily life or by agent personality.

The Human Face of Mental Health and Mental Illness in Canada 2006

The purpose of this report is to raise awareness and increase knowledge and understanding about mental health and mental illness in Canada. This report is the culmination of many hours of work by many dedicated people who care about improving the quality of life of people coping with mental illness and their families, and who believe in the power of positive mental health to help people “realize aspirations, satisfy needs and … cope with a changing environment.”

2006 Business and Economic Plan for Mental Health and Productivity

This Plan was developed with the input and advice of hundreds of experts, business people and individuals living with mental illnesses.

Working Conditions as a Determinant of Health. This summary is primarily based on papers and presentation by Andrew Jackson, Senior Economist, Canadian Labour Congress, and Michael Polanyi Assistant Professor, Saskatchewan Population Health Research and Evaluation Unit, and Faculty of Kinesiology and Health Studies, University of Regina. The presentations were prepared for The Social Determinants of Health Across the Life-Span Conference, held in Toronto in November 2002.

http://www.ilo.org/public/english/employment/skills/disability/download/mhealth.pdf 

International Labour Organisation, Report (Geneva 2000): Mental health and work: Impact, issues and good practices

Out of the Shadows at Last – Part I 

Out of the Shadows at Last – Part II 

 Transforming Mental Health, Mental Illness and Addiction Services in Canada – Final Report of The Standing Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology, The Honourable Michael J.L. Kirby, Chair; The Honourable Wilbert Joseph Keon, Deputy Chair – May 2006

Disability and Rehabilitation, April 2006

Research Paper: To work or not to work? The occupational trajectories of wheelchair users.

Disability and Research, March 2006

Research Paper: Predicting employment outcomes of rehabilitation clients with orthopaedic disabilities. A CHAID analysis.

Disability and Rehabilitation, March 2006

Research Paper: The perception of pain and pain-related cognitions in subacute whiplash-associated disorders: Its influence on prolonged disability.

Sociology of Health and Illness, January 2006

Abstract: Adding insult to injury: workplace injury in English professional football.

Functions and Knowledge Domains

Function and Knowledge Domains for Disability Management Practice: A Delphi Study: The importance of job functions and knowledge domains to the practice of disability management was examined systematically obtaining the opinions of a panel of 44 recognized experts in disability management.

PriceWaterhouse Coopers

NSW WorkCover – Health, Return to Work, Social and Financial Outcomes Associated with Different Compensation Pathways in NSW: Quantitative Survey Claimants, 19th September 2003.

Safety Programs and Accident Prevention

Current thinking on techniques useful for the prevention of major industrial accidents and disasters.

A Profile of Disability in Canada, 2001

The Participation and Activity Limitation Survey (PALS) provides essential information on the prevalence of various disabilities, the supports for persons with disabilities, their employment profile, their income and their participation in society.

Workplace-Based Return-to-Work Interventions: A Systematic Review of the Quantitative and Qualitative Literature 2004 

To provide a comprehensive summary of the most effective workplace-based RTW interventions and to direct future research priorities in this area, the Institute for Work & Health conducted a systematic review of the literature on return to work published since 1990.

Assessment of a Person’s Ability to Function at Work – MacMaster University, WSIB Study

This study documented a profile of varied Functional Assessment practices in Southern Ontario, explored how the FAs which were performed within a cohort of injured workers in employer and WSIB payment systems were perceived and used, and what subsequently occurred.

Return to Work in Small Workplace: Sociological Perspective on Workplace Experience with Ontario’s “Early and Safe” Strategy

This study examined the strategy of “ESRTW” currently used in Ontario – an approach that emphasizes workplace ‘self-reliance’ and ‘early’ return to work before full recovery in ‘modified’ jobs

Environmental Scan of Workplace Wellness Programs in Alberta

This evaluation scan involved gathering data about workplace wellness programs (ones that included physical activity) currently offered by Alberta organizations.

Return to Work – A Guide to Workers’ Compensation Case Management

Australian Better Practice Guide: This better practice guide has been designed to assist managers to improve workers’ compensation case management within their agencies. It was developed by the Australian National Audit Office (ANAO) in cooperation with Comcare Australia.

Guide to 2005 – 2006 Premiums, June 2005

Australian Government (Comcare): The aim of this booklet is to help premium paying agencies to understand Comcare’s method for setting 2005 – 2006 premiums.

Duty to Accommodate

As accommodation law has developed, tensions have emerged for unionists and other workers. This examination of accommodation cases clarifies some of these tensions.

Strategies to Enhance Labour-Management Cooperation in the Development of Disability Management Programs, International Journal of Disability, Community & Rehabilitation 

Supported by research and literature, this paper explores labour-management collaboration as an essential feature of successful disability management programs.

Workplace Mental Health Indicators – An EAPs Perspective

This report offers a brief primer on three common emotional problems: depression, anxiety, and anger. We also conducted a study to examine EAP utilization trends in these symptoms among Canadian employees.

The Physician’s Role in Helping Patients Return to Work After an Illness or Injury. Canadian Medical Association Policy (2000 Update) 

This policy addresses the role of attending physicians in assisting their patients to return to work after an illness or injury.