May 2022: Co-director Chris McLeod presented findings showing COR leads to safer workplaces at the Ontario General Contractors Association’s annual Leadership Day, held May 6 in Vaughan, ON. Read more in the Journal of Commerce.
April 2022: Canadian workers compensation boards reported that 924 workers died due to work-related causes in 2020. Authored by Sean Tucker and Anya Keefe, this report provides a jurisdictional comparison of work-related injury and fatality rates in Canada between 2016 and 2020 using data from the Association of Workers’ Compensation Boards of Canada (AWCBC).
April 2022: April 28 is National Day of Mourning in remembrance of workers who lost their live to workplace injury and disease this year. A ceremony will be held on April 2 at 10:30 am at Jack Poole Plaza in Vancouver. Watch our co-director Chris McLeod’s message.
April 2022: A multidisciplinary team of researchers from PWHS and the Centre for Gender and Sexual Health Equity (CGSHE) received funding from CIHR for a mixed-methods study that will critically assess the effect of COVID-19 policies on violence, bullying and harassment in the food and beverage service sector in BC.
April 2022: PWHS and the Centre for Gender and Sexual Health Equity (CGSHE) are seeking (1) a Project Coordinator/Interviewer and (2) a Qualitative Research Lead/Interviewer to conduct a mixed-methods study that will critically assess the effect of COVID-19 policies on violence, bullying, and harassment in the BC food and beverage service sector. Please note that these positions closed on April 20, 2022.
February 2022: This scoping review examines barriers and facilitators to return-to-work in the construction industry. Findings suggest that work accommodations are possible but the physical nature and organization of labour present challenges for identifying suitable work. Evidence gaps include the role of unions, workers’ compensation systems, gender and industry-specific organizational characteristics in the return-to-work process. Read more in Journal of Occupational Rehabilitation.
New paper: A framework for understanding how variation in health care service delivery affects work disability management
February 2022: PhD student Kimberly Sharpe developed a framework that identifies predisposing, enabling, workplace environment and need-based factors that could lead to variation in health care spending and use across regions, offering a guide for researchers and policymakers to identify areas for improvement in health care delivery within work disability management systems. Read more in Journal of Occupational Rehabilitation.
New paper: Differences in workers’ compensation claim rates for within-province and out-of-province workers
January 2022: Using WorkSafeBC and Statistics Canada data for 2010-2017, we found that workers from out of province had lower workers’ compensation claim rates than those from within province, even after adjusting for sex, age, industry and year. Differences were largest among health care only claims and smallest among serious injury claims. Read more in American Journal of Industrial Medicine.
New paper: Exploring differences in work disability duration by size of firm in Canada and Australia
January 2022: We examined differences in work disability duration by firm size using data from five Canadian and five Australian workers’ compensation systems. Compared to large firms (200+ FTEs), workers in small firms (<20 FTEs) had longer work disability duration in all but one of the study jurisdictions, even after adjusting for a range of individual-level characteristics. Read more in Journal of Occupational Rehabilitation.
New paper: Evaluating effectiveness of an integrated return-to-work and vocational rehabilitation program on work disability duration in the construction sector
December 2021: Published in Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment and Health, this study examined the effectiveness of an integrated return-to-work (RTW) and vocational rehabilitation (VR) program on cumulative disability days paid to injured workers in the construction sector in Ontario. Findings suggest that the program reduced cumulative disability days paid to all claims but particularly long-duration claims referred to RTW specialists and short-duration claims referred to VR specialists.
December 2021: The results of graduate trainee Niloufar Saffari’s thesis work are published in Occupational and Environmental Medicine. Using a novel linkage of BC workers’ compensation claims and permanent resident data from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, Saffari et al found that both recent and established immigrants in BC experience more days of disability after work injury than Canadian-born workers.
November 2021: WorkSafeBC is seeking applicants for Research Training Awards, available to highly-qualified graduate students at the master’s and doctoral level, and for the Ralph McGinn Postdoctoral Fellowship competitions. These awards are designed to foster the development of occupational health and safety research expertise in BC.
November 2021: PWHS Co-Director Chris McLeod spoke about workplace health and safety with Rob Cook, VP of Health and Safety at the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board of Ontario, at a Celebration of Health and Safety on Nov. 25, 2021. Watch the recording (starts at 9:20).
November 2021: PWHS is seeking a postdoctoral fellow to join our research team to lead work on evidence syntheses (including systematic reviews, meta-analyses, scoping reviews, and briefing notes) in the area of occupational epidemiology and work and health research to inform policies and practices.
November 2021: PWHS Co-director Chris McLeod and Leah Thomas-Olson, Client Partner – Ergonomics, Health and Safety, Fraser Health, will present on the health and productivity effects of working from home for Fraser Health employees at the UBC School of Population and Public Health OEH seminar on Friday Nov. 26 at 12:30 PST. More details
November 2021: PWHS postdoctoral fellow Dr. Sonja Senthanar and colleagues examined differences in disability duration after a work injury among immigrants compared to Canadian-born workers and found inequities in disability duration for immigrant workers, particularly economic and family class and women immigrants.
October 2021: PWHS co-leads Mieke Koehoorn and Chris McLeod are giving a series of presentations on gender/sex differences in workers’ compensation, and differences in disability duration after work injury for immigrant workers, by firm size, and in the construction industry, at the 28th International Symposium on Epidemiology in Occupational Health (EPICOH) conference, October 25-28.
September 2021: The Institute for Work & Health Speaker Series will present results from a study on the nature and extent of claim suppression in BC on Sept 28 at 8am PDT. Register here.
September 2021: PWHS postdoctoral fellow and WorkSafeBC fellowship awardee Sonja Senthanar talks about her research into worker’s compensation and immigrant working conditions in Canadian Occupational Safety magazine.
September 2021: The MSFHR Research Trainee Program supports health researchers in the training phase of their research career to enable career development and the long-term success of the BC health research landscape. PWHS post doctoral fellow Sonja Senthanar is a 2021 recipient for her project, entitled Immigrants, work and health: Evaluation of services to reduce inequities.
July 2021: PWHS postdoctoral fellow Sonja Senthanar and undergraduate researcher Michelle Chen used Statistics Canada survey data to examine whether workers feel safe returning to work, the reasons for their fears/concerns, and their safety preferences for returning to work by immigration status and by sex/gender, where possible.
July 2021: From Sept 20-23, 2021 the prevention community will come together to address this global priority at the XXII World Congress on Safety and Health at Work. The completely online, digital event offers world-class speakers, inspiring experiences, elevated networking, premium content, and access to global leaders. Early bird registration has been extended to July 26, 2021.
June 2021: PWHS researchers conducted an umbrella review of reviews examining the work and health impacts of working in an epidemic/pandemic environment. The review addresses the impacts of working during an epidemic or global pandemic on work and health outcomes; the socioeconomic, demographic and work factors that are associated with these outcomes; and potential risk mitigation or intervention strategies that address these factors or outcomes.
June 2021: About half of BC workers who have a work injury or illness that results in time away from work do not report the injury or illness to WorkSafeBC, and an estimated four to 13 per cent of workers with work-related injuries experience claim suppression—i.e. pressure or inducement from an employer not to make a claim.
May 2021: On June 8 at 10am PDT Mieke Koehoorn will speak at a Bancroft Institute session on life and work after work injury, on research opportunities to investigate employment and salary outcomes among injured workers with permanent impairments.
May 2021: We examined the changing patterns of incidence of mesothelioma over time, in BC and Ontario (in partnership with colleagues from the Occupational Cancer Research Centre in Ontario), and the demographic, geographic, and clinical determinants of survival. Research briefs describe the results from both provinces.
April 2021: April 28 is a national day of mourning to remember workers who lost their lives on the job. The death of each worker is an immeasurable loss and has devastating consequences for families and friends. And each death is preventable. This year, the day of mourning is especially significant given the many essential and healthcare workers who have lost their lives to due to workplace COVID-19 exposure. Online ceremonies in BC.
April 2021: A new paper by PWHS PhD trainee Anita Minh in International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health examines how the course of symptoms from ages 16–25 influences early adult education and employment in Canada and the USA.
April 2021: A new paper in Safety Science found that over 70% of respondents to a WorkSafeBC survey reported that inspections led to changes.
March 2021: A new paper in Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment and Health finds that programs intended to improve return to work should take pre-existing and new onset anxiety and depression disorders into consideration and that gender-sensitive work disability strategies may be warranted.
New paper: Does gradually returning to work improve time to sustainable work after a work-acquired musculoskeletal disorder?
March 2021: A new paper in Occupational and Environmental Medicine finds an effect for seriously injured workers with longer disability durations, especially women, workers with soft-tissue injuries, and for trade and manufacturing sectors.
March 2021: A new paper in Healthcare describes a realist review that informs practical program and policy decisions to enhance violence prevention education effectiveness in healthcare settings.
March 2021: A webinar April 1 at 10 am PDT will feature PWHS Research Associate Robert Macpherson examining whether differences in work disability duration for out-of-province workers vary by industry and context, with a specific focus on the factors that influence return-to-work of mobile workers in BC. Register
Webinar: Work disability policy and practices supporting healthcare and mobility of injured and disabled workers
February 2021: A webinar March 10 at 10am EST will examine which healthcare professionals are recognized by workers’ compensation boards and why is this relevant to the care and return-to-work experience of injured workers, as well as how work disability policy frameworks and programs support or impede Canadians with physical disabilities to engage in work-related travel, or ‘work mobility’. Register
February 2021: PWHS PhD candidate Sharon Provost will discuss findings and practical recommendations from a realist evaluation of the education for BC healthcare workers to prevent violence from patients and visitors at the SPPH Occupational and Environmental Hygiene (OEH) seminar on Friday, March 5 at 12:30 pm PST.
January 2021: A new paper in Occupational and Environmental Medicine finds that out-of-province workers experience longer disability durations, particularly in some sectors and in western provinces.
January 2021: A new paper in Labour & Industry describes the distribution of labour by sex/gender across occupations in the Canadian workforce and examines changes in this distribution since 1991.
January 2021: A new paper in Occupational and Environmental Medicine examines the prevalence and risk factors for anxiety and depression disorders among men and women with musculoskeletal strain or sprain work injury in BC.
January 2021: PWHS research associate Robert Macpherson will discuss the factors that best determine hazard management changes following workplace inspections conducted by WorkSafeBC at the SPPH Occupational and Environmental Hygiene (OEH) seminar on Friday, Jan 29 at 12:30 pm PST.
January 2021: PWHS postdoctoral fellow Sonja Senthanar will join a panel on challenges and strategies for engaged knowledge translation and exchange at a CARWH Working Session on Thursday, Jan 21 at 11 am PST.
November 2020: Our co-director Mieke Koehoorn will present at a Centre for Research on Work Disability Policy webinar on Nov 30 at 9 am PST. Mieke’s presentation will explore the work and health challenges of the pandemic, including workplace community transmission of the coronavirus, employer-paid sick leave benefits, and the ability to work from home.
November 2020: The EPICOH 2020 conference has been postponed to 2021, but a series of webinars are planned for Dec 9 and 11, 2020. These sessions, featuring presentations and an opportunity to interact with occupational epidemiology colleagues, will be free but require pre-registration.
November 2020: Co-Director Chris McLeod was interviewed for an article in the Journal of Commerce, focused on measures to keep construction employees safe in the workplace during the Covid-19 pandemic.
October 2020: PWHS co-director Chris McLeod and Paul Demers, Director of the Occupational Cancer Research Centre, will discuss the changing patterns and trends in the incidence of mesothelioma in Canada at the SPPH Occupational and Environmental Hygiene (OEH) seminar on Friday, Oct 30 at 12:30 pm PDT.
Sept 2020: PWHS Co-Director Mieke Koehoorn is speaking with Cheryl Peters of CAREX Canada about a recent analysis of media articles on workplace outbreaks of COVID-19 in a webinar hosted by the Industrial Accident Victims Group of Ontario (IAVGO) and CAREX Canada Oct 5 at 11am PT. This webinar is intended for law and labour professionals, or anyone interested in workers’ health. A research brief reporting on this analysis of media articles is available here.
September 2020: A new paper by Jonathan Fan, Robert Macpherson, Chris McLeod and colleagues examined age differences in work disability duration and found that older age is not always strongly associated with worse disability duration outcomes.
Sept 2020: Research Associate Robert Macpherson will discuss differences in work-related health outcomes between men and women, and how an understanding of these differences can be used to improve work disability management and rehabilitation policy and practice, in a webinar hosted by the Work Wellness Institute on Sept 9 at 10am PT. Please register in advance.
BC COVID-19 Research and Collaboration Symposium: Public Health, Populations, Health Services, and Impacts
August 2020: PWHS Co-Directors Mieke Koehoorn and Chris McLeod are presenting Sept 1-2 at BC COVID-19 Research and Collaboration Symposium, organized by the BC Academic Health Sciences Network.
August 2020: Great article from UBC SPPH mentioning our findings that those unable to work from home are more likely to be in the lowest income group, in precarious employment, and least likely to have paid sick leave; and that immigrant workers reported higher levels of financial distress and greater concern of job loss due to COVID-19, compared to Canadian-born workers.
July 2020: We have posted a new research brief discussing our evaluation of the Return to Work COR program in BC – an additional certification that firms already holding COR certification could earn prior to 2012. We found that this additional certification does not appear to provide any additional benefit on disability duration.
Impact of COVID-19 on employment and financial security of immigrant workers compared to Canadian-born workers
June 2020: We conducted an analysis of employment and economic concerns of immigrant workers compared to Canadian-born workers, and investigated if employment concern impacted perceived mental health, using the Statistics Canada Canadian Perspectives Survey Series 1, a new web panel survey that was conducted for two weeks in March after the COVID-19 pandemic began.
June 2020: Researchers and knowledge users are invited to participate in a short survey that will ask your opinion on what work and health evidence gaps and research needs exist in the context of global pandemics and COVID-19.
Ability to work from home and paid sick leave benefits by precarious employment and socioeconomic status
May 2020: The public health response to COVID-19 has included a shift to working from home in an effort to limit physical contact and slow the spread of infection. However, working from home is not feasible for everyone. We analysed existing Statistics Canada General Social Survey 2016 data to estimate the number of workers who cannot work from home, and the number of workers without employer paid sick leave benefits.
May 2020: Our co-directors Mieke Koehoorn and Chris McLeod are quoted in a UBC School of Population and Public Health story on isolation and social connection, and the uneven distribution of health risks.
Webinar: The effectiveness of OHS management systems: Is the whole greater than the sum of its parts?
May 2020: Join us on May 19th at 11am PDT (2 pm EDT) to hear our co-director Chris McLeod consider the characteristics of audit certification that will lead to improved health and safety performance.
April 2020: Our co-director Chris McLeod is quoted in a Globe and Mail article about workers’s compensation claims filed for COVID-19 infection.
April 2020: PWHS postdoc Esther Maas will discuss effective and cost-effective approaches in facilitating early and sustained return-to-work after a musculoskeletal injury at a University of Washington Department of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences seminar on Thursday, Apr 16 at 12:30 pm.
March 2020: A new paper by PWHS research associate Robert Macpherson found that, when compared to workers residing in metropolitan areas, those in all other areas experienced more disability days after work injury, especially in the construction and transportation and warehousing sectors.
March 2020: A new paper by PWHS PhD graduate Andrea Jones found that women are less likely than men to receive surgery following work-related musculoskeletal injury in BC.
January 2020: A new paper by PWHS MSc graduate Kelvin Choi and postdoctoral fellow Esther Maas found that workers with psychological injuries in counselling and social work occupations, and in long-term care and residential social services, took longer to return to work following a violence-related incident than workers with non-violence-related incidents. This paper is an Editor’s Choice and so is free to all.
January 2020: PWHS postdoctoral fellow Sonja Senthanar will discuss the impact of work injury and the return to work process on family members of precarisouly employed workers at the SPPH Occupational and Environmental Hygiene (OEH) seminar on Friday, Jan 24 at 1:00 in SPPH B151.
January 2020: PWHS Co-Director Chris McLeod is quoted in an article about heat-related occupational health and safety for outdoor workers in OHS Canada magazine’s Nov/Dec 2019 issue.
January 2020: PWHS researchers, postdoctoral fellows, and graduate students are giving a series of presentations at the Cascadia Occupational, Environmental, and Population Health Conference, January 9-10, in Abbotsford, BC
November 2019: A new paper by PWHS postdoctoral fellow Esther Maas describes patterns of gradual return to work among BC workers with work-acquired musculoskeletal disorders.
November 2019: An article published in the Institute for Work & Health At Work newsletter describes PWHS evaluations of COR programs in BC and Alberta.
Cascadia Environment, Occupation, and Population Health Symposium: Innovative approaches for a planet in crisis
October 2019: The call for presentations and posters for Cascadia 2020 (Jan 9-10, 2020) is open. Submit your abstract by Nov. 15.
October 2019: PWHS Co-Director Chris McLeod will present lessons from Alberta and BC on Nov. 5 at 11 am EST at the Institute for Work and Health in Toronto. The presentation will also be available as a slidecast.
October 2019: Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Studies International Visiting Research Scholar Dr Geoff Wong of the University of Oxford gave a talk on realist reviews at UBC. View his slides, or learn more about our realist evaluation of violence prevention education in health care.
October 2019: A newly-released report on the burden of occupational cancer in Canada presents estimates of occupational exposure and the associated burden of cancer by industry, as well as exposure reduction strategies for the most common occupational carcinogens in Canada. A major feature of the report is the evidence-based policy recommendations directed at government, occupational health and safety systems, employers and non-governmental organizations.
September 2019: PWHS PHD student Andrea Jones will discuss the impacts of anxiety and depression disorders on work disability outcomes among workers with musculoskeletal injuries at the SPPH Occupational and Environmental Hygiene (OEH) seminar on Friday, Oct 4 at 1:00 in SPPH B151.
Public Health, Law and Climate Change: Legal Approaches to Protecting Children’s Health in a Warming World
September 2019: The UBC School of Population and Public Health is launching a monthly speaker series, Voices in Health, on Sept. 30 from 4-6pm. The talk will showcase the potential of using legal approaches that combine human rights law and environmental and public health research to spur action on climate change.
September 2019: PWHS co-director Chris McLeod will outline his thoughts and ideas on current and future training and research needs at the weekly SPPH Occupational and Environmental Hygiene (OEH) seminar on Friday, Sept 6 at 1:00 in SPPH B151.
Roberta Ellis Award for Excellence in the Study and Practice of Occupational and Environmental Health
August 2019: On August 19 a plaque was unveiled at a ceremony at the UBC School of Population and Public Health, honouring Emily Guy, Kyle Meeking, and Nicole Boeder, the first three recipients of the annual award.
Out of the labour force and out of school: a population-representative study of youth labour force attachment and mental health
August 2019: A new paper from PWHS PhD student Anita Minh and coauthors explores mental health and labour force participation among youth.
May 2019: PWHS Co-Director Chris McLeod is speaking at the College and University Safety Association 2019 conference, hosted by the BC Institute of Technology May 29-31. His talk is on the growth of OHS management systems certifications in Canada, and applicability to the education sector.
May 2019: PWHS Co-Director Chris McLeod will speak at a return to work symposium in Ottawa May 16-17. His talk will address new research looking at work injury outside workers’ home province, using data from six Canadian workers’ compensation jurisdictions.
May 2019: PWHS Co-director Chris McLeod will speak at the Monash University School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine on May 7, on lessons from analysis of Canadian workers’ compensation data.
April 2019: PWHS researchers are giving presentations on geographical differences in return to work, precarious work, OHS certification, and work disability differences by gender and immigration status at EPICOH, the International Symposium on Epidemiology in Occupational Health, April 29 to May 2, in Wellington, New Zealand.
April 2019: Our evaluation of the Certificate of Recognition (COR) program in BC found that certification was associated with a reduction in injury rates in most industrial sectors, and this effect was greater in more recent years. A research brief is available for download; the full report is available by request.
March 2019: PWHS Co-director Chris McLeod was a guest on CBC’s BC Today on March 28, speaking about shift work. Listen to the podcast (skip to minute 29 to hear Chris).
March 2019: PWHS PhD student Kim McLeod will share her work on workplace safety inspections in BC at the weekly SPPH Occupational and Environmental Hygiene (OEH) seminar on Friday, March 29 at 12:30 in SPPH B151.
March 2019: PWHS PhD student Sharon Provost will share her work on violence prevention education in healthcare at the weekly SPPH Occupational and Environmental Hygiene (OEH) seminar on Friday, March 8 at 12:30 in SPPH B151.
February 2019: PWHS PhD candidate Sharon Provost is collaborating with BC health authorities on an innovative way to evaluate the Provincial Violence Prevention Curriculum. The Vancouver Coastal Research Institute featured the work in their Research Insider newsletter.
February 2019: PWHS co-director Chris McLeod talks about our work exploring facilitators and barriers to return to work after injury in the construction sector in On Site magazine.
February 2019: The Partnership for Work, Health and Safety is seeking a part-time research assistant to work on a realist evaluation of the violence prevention curriculum used in the BC healthcare sector.
January 2019: We are seeking a postdoctoral fellow to lead a program of research informing the provision of healthcare/rehabilitation and compensations services for injured workers, with a focus on optimal work health and return-to-work outcomes among immigrant workers in Canada.
January 2019: PWHS researchers, postdoctoral fellows, and graduate students are giving a series of presentations at the Cascadia Occupational, Environmental, and Population Health Conference, January 10-11, in Semiahmoo, WA.
January 2019: PhD candidate Sharon Provost is collaborating with BC health authorities on an innovative way to evaluate the Provincial Violence Prevention Curriculum. Using a realist approach, we will identify why, how, when, for whom, and in what circumstances the violence prevention education in health care is effective in decreasing violence and violence-related injuries.
November 2018: A new paper, by PWHS postdoctoral fellow Robert Macpherson and Co-director Chris McLeod and coauthors, found that men transitioned off disability benefits faster than women for shorter claim durations, then women transitioned off benefits faster than men for longer claims. The findings were consistent across three Canadian provinces.
October 2018: PWHS is seeking a qualified and engaged statistical analyst to join our research team in analyzing and learning from occupational health big data to create safer and more secure workplaces.
October 2018: Partnership Co-director Mieke Koehoorn, postdoctoral fellows Robert Macpherson and Esther Maas, PhD students Kimberly Sharpe and Andrea Jones, and MSc student Johannes Rebane are attending CARWH 2018, the Canadian Association for Research on Work and Health biennial conference, October 21-23, in Vancouver. Most of their presentations address return to work after work injury, with attention to a variety of factors, including gradual return to work, barriers in the construction sector, the impact of mental health disorders, and geography.
October 2018: The call for presentations and posters for Cascadia 2019 (Jan 10-11, 2019) is open. Submit your abstract by Nov. 16.
September 2018: Save the date for Nov. 28, when Dr. Paul Demers will deliver IWH’s annual Nachemson lecture. He will discuss the role of research and policy in preventing occupational disease in Canada.
September 2018: PWHS postdoctoral fellow Robert Macpherson will share his work on geographic variation in return to work outcomes at the weekly SPPH Occupational and Environmental Hygiene (OEH) seminar on Friday, Oct. 5 at 12:30 in SPPH B151.
September 2018: Chris McLeod is interviewed in the Journal of Commerce on our study around improving approaches to early and sustainable return-to-work in the construction sector.
August 2018: Postdoctoral fellow Esther Maas will present her work using linked data to build detailed return-to-work trajectories for work disability research at the IPDLN Conference in Banff Sept 12-14.
June 2018: PWHS post-doctoral fellow Robert Macpherson and co-director Chris McLeod, with Australian colleagues Tyler Lane and Alex Collie, are authors of a new paper in BMC Public Health identifying age and sex trends in the disability burden of work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) in Canada and Australia.