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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: BACKGROUND: The use of information and communication technologies improves the versatility of learning environments by broadening the scope of educational practices, allowing students to communicate with other institutions and providing access to information in real time. However, these tools, in addition to environmental characteristics, can increase the internal thermal load, which is directly influenced by the external environment, with a consequent impact on body physiology. OBJECTIVE: The present study investigated the relationship between air temperature and blood pressure and heart rate among students performing cognitive tasks at computer laboratories in four public universities (three in Northeastern Brazil and…one in Northern Brazilian). METHODS: Thermal conditions and physiological parameters were analysed over three consecutive days, and the participants were subjected to changes in air temperature from 20°C to 33°C. Blood pressure and heart rate were measured before and after testing. RESULTS: Analyses of the experimental data showed changes in heart rate at high temperatures, with a greater risk of students from Teresina and Manaus institutions presenting heart rates above 100 bpm during cognitive tasks. CONCLUSIONS: Within the temperature range applied, on the day of the highest temperature, we observed the highest percentage of participants who reported thermal discomfort (63%, 33°C; 58%, 29°C; 38%, 28°C) and a reduction of cognitive performance (15 to 10 points when the air temperature increases from 20 to 33°C).
Keywords: Thermal comfort, cardiovascular system, occupational health, working conditions, thermoregulation
Abstract: BACKGROUND: The biomechanics of homemakers has been minimally studied. The way laundry-drying is performed in Singapore public-housing, using the pipe-socket-system (PSS), could expose the homemakers to musculoskeletal disorder risk. OBJECTIVE: This study aims to quantify the musculoskeletal risk exposure (MRE) associated with laundry-drying amongst female homemakers using the PSS in Singapore public-housing. METHODS: Using snowball sampling approach, five female homemakers familiar with the described laundry-drying method were recruited. The postures of the participants were analysed from video-recorded data and scored using the Rapid Entire Body Assessment (REBA). RESULTS: This pilot study revealed very strong…evidence (p = 0.001) that the participants were exposed to medium risk (REBA score 4.3) when performing this housework task. CONCLUSIONS: Extreme awkward postures and repetitive motions were observed from the participants during the analysis. High REBA scores were frequently associated with the awkward postures adopted due to constraints of physical work space.
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Due to improvements in breast cancer diagnosis and treatment, the healthcare system faces a growing number of cancer survivors. Breast cancer survivors experience many difficulties when returning to work, including discrimination at work and lack of support by employers and colleagues. OBJECTIVE: To point out the knowledge in literature up to date about return to work (RTW) after breast cancer, the factors influencing it and the interventions to facilitate it. METHODS: A literature search was conducted in January 2017 using the databases Medline (PubMed) and Scopus. Studies were included if they analyzed the problem of…RTW in women treated for breast cancer. RESULTS: Twenty-six articles met the inclusion criteria. The studies were divided into four themes: factors facilitating or impeding RTW; interventions to enhance RTW; lived experiences of RTW; economic aspects related to cancer survivors and RTW. CONCLUSIONS: The heterogeneity of the interventions suggests the need for a better definition of the concept of RTW. To compare interventions, studies should use a rigorous approach and better outcome measures should be identified to evaluate RTW.
Keywords: Occupational medicine, rehabilitation, tertiary prevention, breast cancer
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Integrating more prevention interventions into different workplace settings as a component of the role of occupational therapists has a significant relevance recognized by the occupational therapy professional community. Even if some studies suggested that occupational therapists already provide prevention interventions, and that other studies showed the efficacy of such interventions, the literature does not offer a comprehensive understanding of the specific practice of occupational therapists engaging in prevention in workplace settings. OBJECTIVE: The aim of the study was to describe the practice of occupational therapists toward the development of preventive behaviour at work among their clients.…METHOD: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 13 occupational therapists. Phenomenological analysis was used to examine the content of the interviews. RESULTS: Results suggest that occupational therapists form representations of preventive behavior that are consistent with theory, but those are limited and do not take into account the complexity of the concept. Results of the interviews found eight different interventions provided by occupational therapists toward the development of their clients’ preventive behavior at work. CONCLUSION: Occupational therapists recognize their role in supporting their clients’ development of preventive behavior at work. However, they appear to lack a conceptual understanding and resources to help them in their practice toward prevention.
Keywords: Occupational health and safety, preventive behavior, safety behavior, occupational therapy
Abstract: BACKGROUND: The serious shortages of nurses are related to increased risk for musculoskeletal disorders during work. The complexity of patient care places nurses at high-risk for injury and high in the list of occupations with risk for work-related musculoskeletal disorders (WMSD). OBJECTIVE: The current study evaluated the association of personal, professional and health factors with the development of WMSD in the nursing staff of hospitals in the capital of Greece. METHODS: The study was conducted online with 394 nurses (age: 37.85±7.48 years (mean±SD), 19.54% male and 80.46% female) using a questionnaire based on the Nordic Musculoskeletal…Questionnaire, and comparatively examined WMSD across nurses. RESULTS: The prevalence of musculoskeletal disorders in general was 98%, with symptoms reported for the waist (85.3%), neck (71.2%) and back (70.7%). The risk for WMSD was higher for specific RN groups: female nurses had higher risk than males (p -value = 0.000 to 0.022), RNs with 11-20 years of work experience (p -value = 0.008) had higher risk than their younger colleagues, RNs that strain their waist, lift loads, etc faced higher risks (p -value = 0.000 to 0.043). Shift work, age and the body mass index also lead to increased risk. CONCLUSIONS: Our study indicated that Greek nurses suffer more frequently from WMSD in comparison to their colleagues internationally and this must alert hospital managers and the Greek National Health System to develop a prevention policy for WMSD in Greek hospitals.