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WORK: A Journal of Prevention, Assessment & Rehabilitation is an interdisciplinary, international journal which publishes high quality peer-reviewed manuscripts covering the entire scope of the occupation of work. The journal's subtitle has been deliberately laid out: The first goal is the prevention of illness, injury, and disability. When this goal is not achievable, the attention focuses on assessment to design client-centered intervention, rehabilitation, treatment, or controls that use scientific evidence to support best practice.
WORK occasionally publishes thematic issues, but in general, issues cover a wide range of topics such as ergonomic considerations with children, youth and students, the challenges facing an aging workforce, workplace violence, injury management, performing artists, ergonomic product evaluations, and the awareness of the political, cultural, and environmental determinants of health related to work.
Dr. Karen Jacobs, the founding editor, and her editorial board especially encourage the publication of research studies, clinical practice, case study reports, as well as personal narratives and critical reflections of lived work experiences (autoethnographic/autobiographic scholarship),
Sounding Board commentaries and
Speaking of Research articles which provide the foundation for better understanding research to facilitate knowledge dissemination.
Narrative Reflections on Occupational Transitions, a new column, is for persons who have successfully transitioned into, between, or out of occupations to tell their stories in a narrative form. With an internationally renowned editorial board,
WORK maintains high standards in the evaluation and publication of manuscripts. All manuscripts are reviewed expeditiously and published in a timely manner.
WORK prides itself on being an author-friendly journal.
WORK celebrates its 25th anniversary in 2015.
*WORK is affiliated with the Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists (CAOT)* *WORK is endorsed by the International Ergonomics Association (IEA)* *WORK gives out the yearly Cheryl Bennett Best Paper Award*
Abstract: This study examines the identity cues that family caregivers and healthcare personnel use with seniors living with dementia and living in nursing homes. The identity cues represent biographical knowledge used to stimulate the dementia sufferer, trigger signals and incite interaction. Our grounded approach hinges on three objectives: to identify and categorize identity cues; to document their uses; and to gain a better understanding of their effectiveness. We interviewed nine family caregivers and 12 healthcare…workers. Qualitative data indicates that the participants use identity cues that evoke seniors' sociological, relational and individual characteristics. These identity cues play a central role in communication and constitute important information that the family caregivers can share with healthcare personnel. They sustain memory, facilitate care and reinforce seniors' self-value. These results help to define identity, foster a greater role for family caregivers, and constitute a sound basis for the implementation of personalized interventions.
Keywords: Dementia, family caregiver, healthcare personnel, identity cues, nursing home
Abstract: As the average age of the Canadian population continues to increase, and providing care at home to frail older adults becomes ever more prevalent, support for family and friend caregivers remains a key social policy issue. Economic support is an important consideration given the impact of caregiving on labour force participation. Yet the caregiving/paid work relationship is not always straightforward. While caregiving often restricts employment, limited attachment to employment may also influence the decision to provide…care. Isabel's story, collected as part of a study of sibling views of fairness in sharing parent care as well as parent assets, provides a case study in how siblings give different priority to care work versus career work and what support needs arise including those related to sibling conflict over differing priorities. Isabel claims she sacrificed her career to care for her ailing mother while her siblings argue that through caregiving, Isabel was sheltered from the paid workforce.
Keywords: Parent care, care work, labour force participation, siblings, conflict, asset distribution
Abstract: Objective: This paper is a synthesis of research on recruitment and retention challenges for home support workers (HSWs) in Canada. Participants: Home support workers (HSWs) provide needed support with personal care and daily activities to older persons living in the community. Methods: Literature (peer reviewed, government, and non-government documents) published in the past decade was collected from systematic data base searches between January and September 2009, and yielded over 100 references relevant to home care human…resources for older Canadians. Results: Four key human resource issues affecting HSWs were identified: compensation, education and training, quality assurance, and working conditions. To increase the workforce and retain skilled employees, employers can tailor their marketing strategies to specific groups, make improvements in work environment, and learn about what workers value and what attracts them to home support work. Conclusions: Understanding these HR issues for HSWs will improve recruitment and retention strategies for this workforce by helping agencies to target their limited resources. Given the projected increase in demand for these workers, preparations need to begin now and consider long-term strategies involving multiple policy areas, such as health and social care, employment, education, and immigration.
Keywords: Home care, recruitment and retention, compensation, working conditions
Abstract: Objective: As the baby-boom generation moves towards middle age, and their parents toward old age, the number of employees who combine care for an elderly dependant and work will increase in number. These employees are "at risk" of experiencing caregiver strain. This paper advances our understanding of these trends by examining the relationship between caregiver strain and the health of employed caregivers. Participants: Our study involved the analysis of data from the 2001 Canadian…National Work, Family and Lifestyle Study (N= 31,517). Methods: MANOVA was used to determine the relationship between caregiver strain and three situational factors: (1) gender; (2) where the care recipient lives compared to the caregiver; and, (3) family type. Regression was used to determine the relationship between caregiver strain and mental health. Results: We found that caregiver strain depends on gender, family type and location of care. Emotional strain was a significant predictor of mental health. Conclusions: These findings support the need for organizations to expand their thinking around work-life balance to include employees who have eldercare responsibilities.
Abstract: Objectives: In the United States, health care aid is one of the fastest growing jobs. This trend is observed in many other Western countries experiencing increased demands for home and facility-based long-term care. However, the recruitment and retention of workers is difficult. The goal of this research is to provide a sound conceptual analysis of paid ancillary care as a better understanding of this type of labour can help improve the delivery and quality of services…as well as the retention of workers. Methods: The activities of paid ancillary care are analysed using Marx's analysis of labour and Habermas's distinction of action types. Studies on care workers as well as the manner in which the provision of care is structured by agencies are examined in order to highlight how care work is perceived. Conclusions: Although care labour is situated in a post-Fordist economy, it is, nonetheless organised as assembly-line work reminiscent of Fordist labour. This is in part a consequence of the reduction of care to a commodity. The commodification of care erases the relational component intrinsic to adequate caring. It is suggested that care labour should be structured to support the complex activities that comprise this type of labour.
Keywords: Care labour, instrumental action, communicative action, Habermas
Abstract: Objective: To describe a novel model for the development of Caregiver Networks that is based on the notion of partnership. Methods: We describe the background rationale and key elements of the Model in order to assist individuals in developing new Caregiver Networks and respite mechanisms. Participants: Provincial/territorial/state health and social service systems, unpaid caregivers (family members or friends) and care recipients (ill or disabled individuals across cultures and age groups) in a network partnership. Results:…We demonstrated in this model that Caregiver Networks is a shared responsibility among partner members for development and evaluating network and respite care mechanisms. Conclusion: The model for developing Caregiver Networks is at the stage of implementation. The authors welcome opportunities to conduct pilot projects to evaluate this Model.
Keywords: Caregiver networks, respite care, social support, partnerships, caregiver, care recipients
Abstract: Objective: Family support in end-of-life decision-making is critical, yet this issue receives little attention. The purpose of this research is to provide insight into how the clinical ethicist can effectively support family caregivers when making end-of-life healthcare decisions. It further suggests how the clinical ethicist can provide support to other healthcare professionals who work with family caregivers in making end-of-life healthcare decisions. Participants and methods: Using a grounded theory approach,…a theoretical sampling of 20 family caregivers previously involved in end-of-life decision-making were interviewed. Semi-structured in-depth interviews were audiotaped, and transcribed. Results: Interviews were analyzed using a constant comparative approach. The analysis resulted in the identification of three categories related to the experience of decision-making: the impact of healthcare decision-making on individual and family well-being, the effectiveness of healthcare professionals in supporting families, and the role of the ethicist. Conclusions: The results demonstrated the challenges that family members encounter when faced with end-of-life decision-making. The participants identified the importance of having access to a clinical ethicist who, with objectivity and specific training, can better meet the needs of family caregivers and improve the process of decision-making at the end-of-life.
Abstract: Objective: To describe and analyse different views of health promoting leadership among actors involved in workplace health promotion in eight Swedish municipalities. Methods: Twenty individuals were interviewed and their views were analysed according to the methodology of phenomenograpic research, exploring how health promoting leadership was described, what motives were expressed, and what critical conditions were perceived for developing such leadership. Results: The informants described health promoting leadership in…three ways: organising health promoting activities, having a supportive leadership style, and developing a health promoting workplace. The motives mentioned for developing health promoting leadership were instrumental motives and improved health. The critical conditions for health promoting leadership were organisational conditions, characteristics of individual managers, and support to managers. Conclusions: It seems that the concept of health promoting leadership was often used to link ideas about good leadership to the health of employees. Organisational goals and management trends may also have influenced the motives as well as the conditions for development of health promoting leadership.
Keywords: Workplace health promotion, leadership, Swedish municipalities, middle managers, phenomenography
Abstract: Objective: When entering employment many beginning teachers experience a reality shock and a crisis of competence. These two factors, in combination with high levels of job demands and low levels of job resources, may lead to the development of burnout. The purpose of the study was to investigate how individual characteristics, the educational context, and the work context predicted levels of burnout and work engagement during this transition period. Participants: The sample consisted of…1290 beginning teachers from Sweden. Methods: Data were collected using surveys during the final year of education and during the initial period of employment. Data were analyzed using hierarchical regression. Results: Job demands, job resources, and spillover between private life and work accounted for the largest amount of explained variance in both burnout and work engagement. Job demands were more strongly related to burnout, whereas job resources more strongly related to work engagement. The predictors with the greatest relative influence on both burnout and work engagement were unmet expectations and mastery of skills. Conclusions: The results support the importance of the work context's impact on burnout and work engagement. Additionally, the interaction between private life and work should be further studied in future studies.
Abstract: Objective: Occupational stress models suggest that the ability to understand, predict, and control stressful events minimizes their impact. This study examines the applicability of the stress antidote theory to the safety environment. Newly developed measures assess understanding why and how unsafe events occur, predicting the occurrence of unsafe events, and controlling unsafe events, and how these constructs relate to safety performance at work. In addition, the role of supervisor safety support is…explored. Participants: 424 employees in the Facilities department at a large university. Methods: Measures were developed based on existing literature and focus groups, and participants completed a survey about their safety experiences at work. Results: Analyses conducted using structural equation modeling indicate that safety understanding, safety prediction, and safety control are related but distinct variables. Safety understanding affects safety performance through safety control, while supervisor support for safety affects safety performance both directly and indirectly through control. Conclusion: Lack of understanding of safety or inability to predict dangerous outcomes may be necessary but not sufficient to explain unsafe workplace behaviors. Employees' safety behaviors may be more directly influenced by the extent to which they have the power to control safety in their work environment.