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Blurred figures of workers walking
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How daily movement patterns are linked to heart health of workers

How much physical activity do Canadian workers actually do in a day, and when? And what patterns of movement are associated with lower risks of cardiovascular disease? An Institute for Work & Health (IWH) study drew on activity tracker data to answer these questions. It found that people who were sedentary—i.e. who did little physical activity throughout the day—had the highest risk of heart disease compared to most other groups. No surprise there. What is surprising, however, was how their heart health risk compared with those who did vigorous, tiring work all day.

A man and a woman work together to push a trolley through a warehouse
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New review sums up sex/gender differences in work injury and illness outcomes

Men and women may be part of the labour force in roughly equal proportions. But many jobs and industries are still dominated by one sex/gender or another. In that light, a new systematic review at IWH looks at how work exposures and injury/illness outcomes are different for men and women.

A blurry image of a hospital waiting room
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IWH links ER and workers’ comp claims data, finds important patterns in under-reporting

Over a third of work-related injuries and illnesses treated in Ontario hospital emergency rooms (ERs) don’t get reported as Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) claims. That’s according to a recent Institute for Work & Health (IWH) data linkage study that found notable patterns in work-related injury reporting and under-reporting—including a change in reporting levels following the 2008/09 global financial crisis.

An overhead shot of a woman holding her head in front of a laptop
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IWH study finds psychosocial work factors lead to burnout, not other way around

Studies to date have repeatedly shown a link between poor psychosocial work conditions and burnout. Some have also shown the link to potentially be a causal one. But if work can cause burnout, might burnout influence a person’s relationship to work? A new IWH study recently explored this question. 

A worker slumps over in fatigue and defeat, next to an angry boss and a desk piled high with work
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Burnout, stress risk increases greatly when psychosocial work conditions are bad overall

For one in 10 Canadian workers, the psychosocial work environment is poor across the board. They lack job security, have unmanageable workloads, receive little supervisor support, and so on. What’s more, their working conditions are associated with a substantial increase in risk of burnout and stress—seven and nine times greater risk, respectively, than among workers with good psychosocial working conditions. This is according to a new study by the Institute for Work & Health (IWH) and the Occupational Health Clinics for Ontario Workers (OHCOW).

 

A line drawing of a male figure slumped in a chair, head in hand
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Webinar: Charting the long-term financial hit of having depression

How much of an impact can a depressive episode have on someone’s work earnings? IWH Associate Scientist Dr. Kathleen Dobson has conducted a study to answer this question. On November 9, she shares findings from her novel study in an IWH Speaker Series presentation.

 

Close-up of floor markings indicating six feet distances
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Webinar: Understanding infection control practices and COVID spread at work

From the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, public health authorities recognized workplaces as a potential site of transmission. However, there remain large information gaps about workplace COVID-19 protection practices and COVID-19 spread at work. What types of infection control practices were in place at workplaces that continued to operate? How many cases of COVID-19 infection were transmitted at work? Find out on October 19, in an IWH Speaker Series by Dr. Peter Smith, who will share results from two studies conducted jointly with Public Health Ontario.

A masked worker riding a bus
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Workers’ COVID concerns related to their work conditions, not disability status: study

People with both physical and mental health disabilities were the most concerned about their work, health and finances during the early part of the pandemic. That’s according to an Institute for Work & Health (IWH) study led by Senior Scientist Dr. Monique Gignac. Notably, the study found concerns were linked to people’s work conditions, not to their health or disability status.

View from the back of a man in a suit in an urban street
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Unemployment benefits linked to lower mortality rates over 10 years: IWH study

We know that being out of work puts people at risk of short- and long-term health consequences—including higher death rates. A new Institute for Work & Health study looks at whether—and how much—having income support during unemployment can lessen the negative impact.

A group of people around a table, brainstorming
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Help design ways to support the future employment of young people with disabilities

Are you a young person living with a disabling health condition? Do you have direct experience supporting young people with disabilities? Or do you have expertise in policy, labour markets, disability and employment or strategic foresight?

If you answer yes to any of the above, we invite you to take part in an online activity aimed at designing better future work supports for young people with disabilities. For more information about this study, please contact Kay Nasir by emailing knasir@iwh.on.ca.