Workplace disability management

More and more Canadian workplaces are setting up accommodation and return-to-work (RTW) programs to help ensure employees with work-related and non-work-related injuries and illnesses are able to remain at work or return to work as quickly as they are safely able to do so. The Institute for Work & Health (IWH) conducts extensive research into the workplace policies and procedures that most effectively help workers safely remain at and return to work, as well as system-level programs (e.g. those offered by workers’ compensation boards) that support workplaces in doing so. This research also explores life-course issues, work disability trajectories, RTW prognostic factors, and the scope and impact of chronic, episodic and other conditions that are not necessarily caused by work, but affect the ability of people to find and keep work.

Latest news and findings

A group of people around a table, brainstorming

IWH Speaker Series: What the future of work looks like to young people with disabilities

What do young adults with disabilities think about when they weigh their job options and consider their career goals in the future of work? In an IWH Speaker Series presentation on December 14, Institute Scientist Dr. Arif Jetha shares findings from his study on this question. He also discusses the supports young adults with disabilities need to face the challenges of a changing labour market and take advantage of its potential opportunities.

Sign up for webinar
People with various disabilities at the office

Estimating the economic benefits of a fully inclusive Canada

Despite progress to date, persons with disabilities still face discrimination and other barriers to full participation in society. They have lower employment rates, lower earnings, lower education attainment, higher poverty rates and higher health-care use. What would be the economic benefits if these barriers were removed? An IWH study set out to estimate the economic benefits of a fully inclusive Canada.

Learn what it found
A cropped selection of an infographic on RTW differences between mental and physical injuries

New infographic underlines key RTW differences between mental, physical injuries

Much of what we know about the return-to-work (RTW) process is based on workers’ compensation claims involving physical injuries. For people with mental health claims, the picture is very different. A new IWH infographic points out key disparities based on research conducted by the Institute.

Download the infographic
A doctor speaks to a patient, who's out of frame

Now recruiting health-care providers for new ECHO OEM mentoring project  

A new Project ECHO program on occupational and environmental medicine (OEM) has been launched! This telementoring project, which includes a research component led by IWH, is designed to offer support and advice to Ontario health-care providers who have patients with work-related health conditions. The program is now recruiting primary care providers—including physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, registered nurses and other allied health professionals. Sessions are held via videoconference each Friday from September 17 to December 3, 2021.

Find out more and sign up
A masked worker riding a bus

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.

Read about the study