Scientific reports

Scientific reports are Institute for Work & Health (IWH) project-based reports for funders and interested stakeholders. Written by research teams that are led by or include an IWH scientist, the reports generally include the context and rationale for the study, how it was conducted (i.e. methodology) and its findings, followed by a discussion and, if applicable, recommendations. These reports are not peer-reviewed, although they often form the basis of peer-reviewed journal articles that are later published.

Economic burden of lung cancer and mesothelioma in Canada due to occupational asbestos exposure (2015)

Tompa E, Kalcevich C, McLeod CB, Lebeau M, Fong D, McLeod K, Kim J, Demers P
This November 2015 presentation provides an early look at the results of an economic burden study on the costs to Canadian society of new cases of lung cancers and mesothelioma attributable to occupational asbestos exposures in a particular year.

Work injury and poverty: investigating prevalence across programs and over time

Tompa E, Scott-Marshall H, Ballantyne P, Saunders R, Hogg-Johnson S
This report shares the findings from a study on the prevalence of poverty among permanently impaired injured workers across different time periods and receiving benefits from different legislative programs.

Understanding the management of injury prevention and return to work in temporary work agencies

MacEachen E, Saunders R, Lippel K, Kosny A, Mansfield L, Carrasco C
How are temporary work agencies organized to manage injury prevention and return to work in light of their non-standard organization? How can we better protect the workplace health of temporary work agency workers? This report shares the results of a study that aimed to answer these questions, focusing on job placements for unskilled and semi-skilled jobs by temporary agencies of all sizes.

Needlestick injury prevention: lessons learned from acute-care hospitals in Ontario

Chambers A, Mustard C
To help stakeholders understand why needlestick injuries continue to occur in Ontario hospitals despite a regulation accelerate the adoption of safety-engineered needles, Institute for Work & Health researchers took a close look at the policies and practices of three acute-care hospitals in the province. This report documents their findings.

Assessment of the utility of WorkSafeNB's Internal Responsibility System Questionnaire and IWH's Organizational Performance Metric: public report

Albert AL, Amick B, Kerr B, Swift M
In 2010, WorkSafeNB asked the Institute for Work and Health (IWH) to assess its Internal Responsibility System Questionnaire (IRSQ), a survey tool it had developed to measure safety culture within an organization. As part of its assessment, IWH compared the IRSQ with another previously validated tool designed to measure leading indicators, called the IWH Organizational Performance Metric (IWH-OPM). This document reports on the assessment of these two tools.

Adequacy of workers’ compensation benefits: supplemental report

Tompa E, Mustard C
This report describes the findings of a supplemental analysis of the adequacy of workers’ compensation earnings replacement benefits. The original analysis measured the adequacy of earnings replacement benefits for permanently disabled workers under two workers’ compensation benefit regimes in Ontario. The supplementary analysis ihcludes the contribution of Canada Pension Plan Disability (CPP-D) benefits to the assessment of the adequacy of wage replacement benefits.

Systematic review of prognostic factors for workers' time away from work due to acute low-back pain: an update

Steenstra I, Irvin E, Heymans M, Mahood Q, Hogg-Johnson S
This report explores the factors that affect how long it will take workers to return to work following an absence due to acute low-back pain, based upon the results of a systematic review update conducted by the Institute for Work & Health.

Red Flags/Green Lights: a multiple stakeholder evaluation of the uses of a return-to-work problems guide

MacEachen E, Cardoso S, Kosny A, Mansfield L, Keown K
In May 2009, the Institute for Work & Health developed Red Flags/Green Lights: A Guide to Identifying and Solving Return-to-Work Problems to help decision-makers identify and manage return-to-work (RTW) problems. This document reports on a study that evaluated how this guide is being used by various RTW stakeholders.

Delicate dances: new immigrants' experiences after a work-related injury

Kosny A, Lifshen M
This is a plain-language report summarizing the findings of an Institute for Work & Health study that explored the experiences of recent immigrants who were injured on the job.

Immigrant workers' experiences of injury reporting and claim filing: final report

Kosny A, Lifshen M, MacEachen E, Smith PM, Jafri GJ, Neilson C, Pugliese D, Shields J
The experiences of recent immigrants who are injured on the job, including their knowledge of their rights, encounters with employers and health-care providers, and experiences with injury reporting and claim filing, are detailed in this study report from the Institute for Work & Health.

Review of safety resources for recent immigrants entering the Canadian workforce

Kosny A, Lifshen M
This national scan from the Institute for Work & Health looks at some of the services, programs and resources on occupational health & safety and workers' compensation that are available to recent immigrants to Canada. It also discusses trends in the types of resources available, identifies important gaps, and highlights case studies of programs that present interesting opportunities for providing this information to newcomers.

Emergency department visits for the treatment of work-related injury and illness in Ontario

Mustard C, Chambers A, Bielecky A, McLeod CB, Smith PM
A study from the Institute for Work & Health, detailed in this report, suggests emergency department records in Ontario can provide an independent source of reliable surveillance information on acute job-related injuries and illnesses.

Systematic review of intervention practices for depression in the workplace

Furlan AD, Gnam W, Carnide N, Irvin E, Amick B, DeRango K, McMaster R, Cullen KL, Brouwer S, Bultmann U, Slack T
Depression in the workplace is widespread, and workplaces feel its financial pinch in the form of absenteeism and presenteeism. Yet workplace programs that specifically target depression remain uncommon, perhaps because little information is available on the effectiveness of these programs when it comes to improving outcomes of importance to employers. This systematic review set out to provide such information and its results are included in this report.

Report on knowledge transfer and exchange practices: a systematic review of the quality and types of instruments used to assess KTE implementation and impact

Van Eerd D, Cole DC, Keown K, Irvin E, Kramer D, Gibson J, Kohn M, Mahood Q, Slack T, Amick B, Phipps D, Garcia J, Morassaei S
This report shares the findings of a systematic review that looked across a wide variety of research fields to identify tools that can accurately and reliably measure how well KTE activities bring research evidence to practitioners and change their knowledge, attitudes and/or behaviour.

Benchmarking organizational leading indicators for the prevention and management of injuries and illnesses: final report

Amick B, Farquhar A, Grant K, Hunt S, Kapoor K, Keown K, Lawrie C, McKean C, Miller S, Murphy C, Nichol K, Roche M, Sackville-Duyvelshoff C, Shermer P, Speers J, Swift M, Szabo M, Vandevis T, Young J
Can a simple tool be developed that will predict a firm’s workplace injury experience based on an assessment of its health and safety policies and practices? This was the question that a team of partners within Ontario's occupational health and safety (OHS) system set out to answer, and it looks like the answer is “yes.” This report describes the team's work developing these potential OHS leading indicators.

OHSCO System Performance Measurement Report 2008

Speers J, Robson LS, Mustard C
The Occupational Health & Safety Council of Ontario (OHSCO) released its final report on system performance measurements. The report highlights trends of key performance indicators in the Ontario prevention system in 2008.

Systematic review of the effectiveness of training and education for the protection of workers

Robson LS, Stephenson C, Schulte P, Amick B, Chan S, Bielecky A, Wang A, Heidotting T, Irvin E, Eggerth D, Peters R, Clarke J, Cullen KL, Boldt L, Rotunda C, Grubb P
Occupational health and safety (OHS) training is an important part of managing workplace hazards and risks. However, many OHS stakeholders want to know whether training can meet the goals of decreasing workplace injuries and illness, and whether the cost of training programs can be justified. This report shares the findings of systematic review to determine whether OHS training and education programs have a beneficial effect on workers and firms.

Bridging the safety gap for vulnerable young workers using employment centres

Breslin FC, Wood M, Mustard C
This report from the Institute for Work and Health and the Ontario Association of Youth Employment Centres looks at work injuries and health and safety knowledge among a high-risk group of workers: young people aged 15 to 24 who are out of school, especially those with less than a high school diploma.

Effectiveness and implementation of health and safety programs in small enterprises: a systematic review of quantitative and qualitative literature

MacEachen E, Breslin FC, Kyle N, Irvin E, Kosny A, Bigelow P, Mahood Q, Scott-Dixon K, Morassaei S, Facey M, Chambers L, Couban R, Shannon HS, Cullen KL, Amick B
Small businesses have unique challenges with occupational health and safety (OHS). Overall, workers in small business have a higher risk of injury than workers in large firms, yet small-business owners and their workers may not have a sense of this increased risk because a work injury in any one small workplace is relatively rare. This reports shares the findings of a systematic review conducted to provide an understanding of, and guidance on, how to implement OHS in small businesses and what OHS programs are most likely to work.

Systematic review of the role of occupational health and safety interventions in the prevention of upper extremity musculoskeletal symptoms, signs, disorders, injuries, claims and lost time

Amick B, Kennedy CA, Dennerlein JT, Brewer S, Catli S, Williams R, Serra C, Gerr F, Irvin E, Mahood Q, Franzblau A, Van Eerd D, Evanoff B, Rempel D
Injuries to the upper extremity are common among workers, accounting for about 30 per cent of lost-time claims in Ontario in 2006. The upper extremity includes the neck, shoulder, upper arm, elbow, forearm, wrist and hand. The systematic review described in this report looked at the effectiveness of interventions to prevent upper extremity disorders and traumatic injuries. Note that this systematic review was updated in 2016.