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The effect of individual counselling and education on work ability and disability pension: a prospective intervention study in the construction industry
  1. Angela G.E.M. de Boer (a.g.deboer{at}amc.uva.nl)
  1. Coronel Institute of Occupational Health, Academic Medical Center, Universiteit van Amsterdam, Netherlands
    1. Alex Burdorf
    1. Department of Public Health, University Medical Center Rotterdam, Erasmus MC, Netherlands
      1. Cor van Duivenbooden
      1. Arbouw Foundation, Amsterdam, Netherlands
        1. Monique H.W. Frings-Dresen
        1. Coronel Institute of Occupational Health, Academic Medical Center, Universiteit van Amsterdam, Netherlands

          Abstract

          Objectives: To investigate the effectiveness of a counselling and education programme on work ability and work disability pension for employees in the construction industry. Methods: Employees with a high disability risk of 38% or higher in the next four years were included. Employees in the intervention group were either selected by an occupational physician or enrolled themselves. They received an assessment and individual programme focused on optimizing work functioning, while the control group received care-as-usual. Data on work ability measured with the work ability index (WAI) and work disability pensions were collected at baseline during a periodic occupational health examination and at 9 months, 18 months and 26 months after the start of the intervention with a questionnaire. Results: Most employees in both intervention (n=83) and control group (n=209) were carpenters (43% and 37%) and bricklayers (7% and 15%). A successful completion of the programme was achieved by 42% of the participants in the intervention group. Work ability in the intervention group was lower at baseline but showed an increase over time while work ability of the control group remained the same. The work ability in the intervention group improved slightly more (p=0.09). No statistically significant differences in percentages of employees receiving a disability pension between the intervention and control group were found at 9 or 18 months and no differences in the age-adjusted percentages of employees receiving a disability pension were found between the groups at any measurement. Conclusions: The programme was slightly effective in improving the work ability but not in reducing work disability pensions. A more comprehensive multi-disciplinary intervention programme might be necessary.

          • construction indusrty
          • construction worker
          • disability pension
          • early retirement
          • work ability

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