Employer Policies and Practices to Prevent Disability

1 Hour (VRA) | taught by William S. Shaw, PhD, P.E.

Course description

It is well known that employers play a key role in facilitating return-to-work and accommodating workers with pain and disability, but workers continue to report variable levels of support and assistance in the workplace, even when proactive return-to-work practices are formally adopted as written policies. Engaging employers to implement and coordinate more effective practices can be challenging and this requires buy-in at many levels from senior management to small working groups and immediate supervisors. In this webinar, Dr. William Shaw will talk about the role of employers to prevent unnecessary job loss, including new challenges and some future directions for preventing long-term disability and job loss.

The basis for this webinar is a 2015 invited conference and a subsequent 2016 Special Issue of the Journal of Occupational Rehabilitation that was dedicated to understanding the role of employers to facilitate return-to-work, make job accommodations, and provide assistance and support to symptomatic or disabled workers. He will review relevant workplace factors and intervention programs, describe goals for future research and practice, and discuss implementation barriers amidst a changing workplace and a changing worker population.

During this webinar, you will learn:

  • Why disability continues to be a major challenge for workers and employers.
  • How employer policies and practices can affect disability outcomes.
  • When more worker-centered approaches are necessary to overcome RTW challenges.
William S.  Shaw, PhD, P.E.
William S. Shaw, PhD, P.E.
Senior Research Scientist Center for Disability Research, Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety

Dr. Shaw's work focuses on improving return-to-work outcomes for work-related musculoskeletal conditions through the integration of clinical and workplace factors. Currently, he is investigating risk factors for delayed recovery from occupational low back pain and examining optimal supervisory practices for responding to workplace injuries. His other studies have focused on patient-provider communication of workplace concerns and the strategies that workers use to stay on the job while managing recurrent pain.
In addition to his current position, Dr. Shaw is an instructor with the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, Massachusetts.


This program is pre-approved by VRA Canada for a 1 hour training session