Impact case studies

In order to gauge the impact of its research, the Institute for Work & Health tracks and reports on the uptake, use and effects of its research by stakeholders within the occupational health and safety, disability prevention and workers’ compensation systems—largely in Ontario, but also in other jurisdictions in Canada and around the world. This tracking and reporting is done according to a research impact model developed by the Institute. Case studies that illustrate impact are a key feature of the model, and they are included here, from the most recent to the oldest.
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IWH research raises awareness of the economic burden of asbestos-related disease as Canada commits to ban

An IWH study estimating the lifetime cost of newly diagnosed cases of mesothelioma and lung cancer due to work-related asbestos exposures in a single year garnered much media and public interest, and was cited by Canadian government in its analysis of the impact of its regulation banning asbestos.
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Concerns about newcomers’ safety at work lead organizations to IWH toolkit

Organizations working with recent immigrants are incorporating parts of the Institute's toolkit for teaching newcomers about workplace health and safety into their programming. Organizations in Ontario, Alberta, Northwest Territories and Nunuvaut, and even as far away as Australia, say the resource is just what they were looking for.
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IWH model on breakthrough change used as foundation for WSPS small business strategy

An Ontario health and safety association, Workplace Safety and Prevention Services, turned to the Institute's model of breakthrough change to inform its approach to small business, especially the concept of finding the "knowledge transformation leader" within a small business to advocate for occupational health and safety change.
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WHO guidelines on rehabilitation in health systems informed by IWH systematic reviews

When the World Health Organization released its evidence-based guideline to help primarily low- and middle-income countries develop, extend equitably deliver rehabilitation services, it relied on evidence synthesized by an IWH research team for five of the guideline's nine recommendations.
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Seven “principles” used in return-to-work policies and practices

When Ontario legislated in 1997 that employers and workers cooperate in the early and safe return to work of injured workers, the workplace parties were looking for guidance. They found it in the Institute for Work & Health's evidence-based Seven "Principles" for Successful Return to Work, one of the most popular and widely used guides developed by the Institute.
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WSIB integrates prognostic information in improved return-to-work case management services

Four factors that predict how long injured workers will remain off work are incorporated into new case management model at Ontario's Workplace Safety and Insurance Board.
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Reduced soft-tissue injuries at Ontario utility attributed to work by ergonomics team set up during IWH study

Ten years after it took part in a participatory ergonomics study, Kitchener-Wilmot Hydro's change team was still going strong.
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OHS leader Carillion Canada uses IWH’s vulnerability measure to identify areas for continuous improvement

Despite a strong OHS record, construction and facilities management company sees benefit of learning more through use of IWH's OHS Vulnerability Measure.
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IWH eight-item tool helping WorkSafeBC assess workplace cultures, interact with employers

The IWH Organizational Performance Metric (IWH-OPM) helps WorksafeBC act on a review recommendation to assess safety culture in the province's workplaces.
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Ontario prevention system adopts IWH conceptual framework for OHS vulnerability

A new way of thinking about "vulnerable workers" makes inroads with Ontario's Ministry of Labour and its partners.
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OSHA says IWH review confirms effectiveness of OHS enforcement

Why the U.S. federal agency OSHA cites IWH research to bolster changes in its approach to enforcement.
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Ontario intends to make client employers liable for injury-related cost of temporary agency workers

With regulatory change, Ontario's Ministry of Labour addresses gap in experience rating system after IWH study shows temp workers falling through the cracks.
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IWH leading indicator tool wins over advocates across Canada

The eight-item IWH-OPM is used in several provinces to strengthen safety performance in workplaces.
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Ontario prevention system shifts risk-of-injury emphasis from “young workers” to “new workers”

New workers are in the spotlight after IWH research show workers are at much greater risk of injury in the first month of the job.
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The growing use and application of IWH’s DASH Outcome Measure

Researchers and clinicians alike have embraced the 20-year-old measure that assesses function and disability among people with upper extremity musculoskeletal disorders.
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WSIB work reintegration program improves outcomes, lowers costs

Study by IWH "points us in the right direction," says former WSIB exec.
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Manitoba takes measures to address claims suppression, review assessment rate model

IWH conference on experience rating and financial incentives helps shape review of claims suppression.
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WSIB narcotics strategy reducing harm and spending

IWH opioid and chronic pain expert, Dr. Andrea Furlan, helps shape new rules in her role on drug advisory committee.
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Leading indicators and benchmarking key to growing success for property management company

Brookfield Johnson Controls turns to the IWH-OPM after deciding to shift focus away from lagging indicators.
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Evidence-based service delivery model at WSIB improved return-to-work outcomes

A new case management system for delivering services to injured workers and employers in Ontario leads to improved return-to-work outcomes.
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WorkSafeNB adopts IWH’s tool to benchmark health and safety

Institute expertise tapped to evaluate agency's safety perception tool--and to provide a better alternative.
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WCB adapts toolkit for newcomers to Manitoba context

The toolkit, called Prevention is the Best Medicine, hopes to bridge the knowledge gap among newcomers of OHS and workers' compensation issues.
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MOL broadens strategy for identifying poor OHS performers

IWH evaluation of high risk firm program confirms need for a redesign.
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CAMH improves office ergonomics through IWH online training program

A piloted training program was so successful it's now offered to all staff at this hospital and research centre.
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WSIB introduces new work reintegration program

Research by IWH scientist describes problems with previous program and suggests way forward.
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IWH expertise key to opioid guideline, tool development

Work on Canadian opioid guideline in turn leads to development of opioid management tool and helps launch IWH scientist's profile as opioid expert.
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SIEF amendments reduce relieved benefit costs

An IWH analysis helps lead to creation of specialized SIEF adjudication team at Ontario's Workplace Safety and Insurance Board, resulting in millions in savings.
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Expert panel reshapes Ontario's OHS system

IWH scientists support the work of the Dean panel with "trusted" and "balanced" research and analysis.
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German MSD campaign incorporates IWH systematic review findings

Germany's social insurance authority regularly turns to systematic reviews from the Institute for Work & Health because of their quality and reliability.
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USW in Canada broadens young worker training

Union awareness program draws on IWH research findings to target all new workers–not just workers who are young.
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Ontario WSIB rolls out new service delivery model

Agency turns around rise of long-duration claims with a new model informed by IWH research.
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WSIB launches anti-stigma initiative

Community research project involving injured workers identifies stigmatizing attitudes as a problem.
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Ontario prevention system produces MSD toolkit

IWH joins system partners in the creation of the MSD Prevention Guideline, an essential resource for province's enforcement efforts.
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WSIB turns to IWH for its expertise in logic models

Institute scientists work with WSIB to provide ongoing evaluation of three important programs.
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Auditor general report leads to hearings on WSIB unfunded liability

Report cites IWH research as important in identifying the need for change in WSIB's service delivery model.
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Health and safety association uses regional injury rates to target services

Knowledge exchanges across the prevention system helps research findings reach front-line consultants and shape service delivery model.
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Manitoba launches safety initiative for immigrants

Research by IWH team confirms for Manitoba the need to increase OHS awareness among newcomers.
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