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See detailIntervening in return to work after long term sickness absence : confronting the stakeholders views
Schippers, Nathalie ULg; Kefer, Fabienne ULg; Cornelis, Sabine ULg et al

Conference (2012, October 23)

Background Acknowledging individual and societal consequences of long term sickness absence, a political awareness is raising in Belgium in favour of a more active reintegration policy. Since various ... [more ▼]

Background Acknowledging individual and societal consequences of long term sickness absence, a political awareness is raising in Belgium in favour of a more active reintegration policy. Since various stakeholders are implied and several legislations may apply, it was deemed necessary to analyse the interplay between regulations and the role of the respective interveners to optimise return to work practices. The study focused on workers who are still under contract. Methods To this purpose, 23 representatives of various categories of stakeholders were interviewed: social insurance physicians, occupational physicians, insurers, social administration services, employers, unions, employment advisers, etc… Interviewees were asked to describe their role, to identify difficulties in the execution of their mission and sources of conflict between legislations, and to propose improvements. The interviews were audiotaped and fully transcribed. Results Several barriers to worker reintegration were pointed out during the interviews. On individual level, the worker social situation and a lack of information influence the chance of a successful return to work. At the enterprise level, the enterprise size, quality of peer support and lack of financial incentives were often mentioned. Most remarks concerned legislation. In Belgian labour law, the employment contract may be ended if the employee is permanently unable to perform his current job, even though modified work would remain possible. For many stakeholders, a sustainable return to work is hindered by the complexity of legislation which was developed for different domains (disability benefits, unemployment, work accident, occupational disease) with little attention to transitions from one domain to the other, especially between benefit insurance and unemployment legislation. It was also stressed that the possibilities offered by the occupational health legislation are underused or inappropriately used. Conclusions Legal and financial security must be insured for the worker who is ready to enrol in a reintegration trajectory. Public authorities should promote better knowledge and implementation of reintegration policies and current legislation should be improved with an emphasis on a better collaboration between stakeholders. [less ▲]

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Peer Reviewed
See detailPartnership in medicine : how to promote the collaboration between general practitioners, occupational physicians and social insurance physicians
Mairiaux, Philippe ULg; Vanmeerbeek, Marc ULg; Schippers, Nathalie ULg et al

Conference (2012, March 22)

Introduction: Many situations justify a close collaboration between GP, OP and SIP. Health problems impact work activity and vice versa. An altered health situation confronts workers with the risk of ... [more ▼]

Introduction: Many situations justify a close collaboration between GP, OP and SIP. Health problems impact work activity and vice versa. An altered health situation confronts workers with the risk of exclusion from the labour market. An interprofessional collaboration is thus needed to promote a more active policy of rehabilitation of workers on long term sickness absence. The Belgian Ministry of Employment initiated this study to identify communication channels and tools that could support collaboration among those health professionals. Methods: To this purpose, 8 nominal groups were organised to think about proposals to improve interdisciplinary collaboration. In sum 42 GP’s, 16 OP’s and 16 SIP’s participated in the discussions. For the elaboration of the final proposals, the research team relied on a multidisciplinary expert group. Results: An asymmetric relation was observed; each group expressed the need to receive information from the two others, but proposals to transfer information were rare. Exchanges in the groups showed that reciprocal ignorance is important and communication modalities are poor. A profound revision of the information transmission procedures seemed necessary. Several practical proposals were made to improve communication in case of sickness absence over three months, to allow information transfer and to promote mutual respect between the three disciplines. Other proposals considered professional training, and professional competencies which need to be better defined. Discussion: Misconceptions of the role of the different professional disciplines form a barrier to an effective collaboration. Technical and regulatory measures alone will not bring about a real promotion of interdisciplinary collaboration. The proposals arising from the study will contribute to increase reciprocal knowledge between professionals from the three disciplines and thus form the basis of a more effective collaboration. In turn, the experience of collaboration could have a beneficial effect on the reciprocal representations of each partner role. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 31 (11 ULg)
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See detailIntervening in sub-acute sickness absences : a large potential for belgian occupational health services
MORTELMANS, Anna Katharina; BULTERYS, Simon; LAHAYE, Dirk et al

in Occupational and Environmental Medicine (2011, September), 68(September 2011), 95

Detailed reference viewed: 41 (16 ULg)