Research and Workplace Innovation Program projects related to musculoskeletal injury prevention

Research and Workplace Innovation Program projects related to musculoskeletal injury prevention

‚ÄčThe Research and Workplace Innovation Program (RWIP), funded by the Workers Compensation Board oResearch and Workplace Innovation Program Logof Manitoba, promotes and funds scientific research, workplace innovation, training and education projects, and knowledge transfer related to prevention of occupational injuries, diseases and return to work of injured or ill workers.

Please see the following list for a selection of recent RWIP projects that addressed musculoskeletal injuries.

Modified work practices and quality of life outcomes for work-related musculoskeletal injuries
- project by Andrew Dolhy, MFL Occupational Health Centre

This resource guide contains information on job accommodation principles and examples for the most common musculoskeletal injuries (back injuries, hand injuries, leg injuries, and neck and shoulder injuries). It also includes a job accommodation worksheet and a resource section with contact information for agencies in Manitoba that can help with the return to work process and ergonomics.

Click here to learn more and read the resource guide.

Home care musculoskeletal injury prevention manual and program
- project by Charlene Robert, Interlake-Eastern Regional Health Authority

The Interlake-Eastern Regional Health Authority (RHA) Home Care Musculoskeletal Injury Prevention (MSI) manual and program were developed to prevent work-related musculoskeletal injuries and near misses related to client handling practices.

The content of this manual follows Manitoba legislation outlining best practice for client handling, risks of musculoskeletal injuries and duties of employers and employees. The manual applies the requirements outlined by the Workers Compensation Board of Manitoba and SAFE Work Manitoba. This manual ensures consistency among client handling practices and helps to prevent work injuries.

Click here to read the final report and the manual.


Home care worker musculoskeletal injury prevention project
- project by Kim Dyck, Regional Health Authority of Central Manitoba

Using the existing Safe Client Handling and Injury Prevention Program (SCHIPP), this project expanded safety training to over 400 home care workers in RHA Central. The availability of an on-site musculoskeletal injury (MSI) educator for the duration of this project provided front-line staff with immediate assistance when faced with patient mobility concerns.

Click here to read the final report.


To create indicators and tools for supervisors to use at the jobsite in identifying potential musculoskeletal injuries associated with drywall installation
- project by Ihor Barwinsky, Gypsum Drywall Interiors Ltd.

Drywall tasks are physically demanding and drywall workers often experience musculoskeletal injuries (MSIs) to the lower back and shoulder. Gypsum Drywall Interiors Ltd (GDI) was motivated to find innovative solutions to prevent MSIs among their drywall workers, as the current safe work procedures for prevention of MSIs were generic and not specific to the movements, duration, intensity and repetitiveness of tasks in the drywall industry. The goal of this project was to reduce the frequency and severity of MSIs by training supervisors to identify and correct potentially injurious movements. The project was launched at 16 GDI worksites in Winnipeg and Steinbach.

Click here to read the final report.

Clinical decision support tools for managing disabling musculoskeletal disorders
- project by Douglas P. Gross, Susan Armijo-Olivo, William S. Shaw, Kelly Williams-Whitt, Nicola T. Shaw, Jan Hartvigsen, Ziling Qin, et al. 

Front-line employees in healthcare and workers compensation frequently make challenging decisions about the most appropriate treatments for injured workers to help facilitate return to work. Clinical decision support (CDS) tools are designed to inform these decisions based on individual worker characteristics. The primary goal of this study was to conduct a scoping review of currently available CDS tools and identify and create an inventory of tools to help stakeholders make treatment decisions for patients with musculoskeletal injuries (MSIs).

Click here to read the final report.


Systematic review of prognostic factors for return to work in workers with sub acute and chronic low back pain
- project by Ivan Steenstra, Institute for Work & Health

How long does it take to return to work following low-back pain (LBP) after the acute phase? This systematic literature review aimed to find out. The goal of this study was to assess the evidence on factors that predict duration of sick leave in workers in the beginning of a LBP-related sick leave episode. 

Click here to read the final report.


How do expectations, coping and depression impact on recovery after a musculoskeletal injury?
-project by Linda J. Carroll, PhD, School of Public Health, University of Alberta

This study examined the inter-relationships among pain disability, fear avoidance, depression and expectations of recovery. The participants for this study were adults who had a recent musculoskeletal condition for which they were seeking physical therapy treatment. Participants completed a baseline questionnaire and were mailed follow-up questionnaires at six weeks, three months and six months later. The questionnaires surveyed attitudes to pain, depression, coping, fear avoidance, pain disability and expectations of recovery. The study found correlations across the psychological measures of depression, passive coping and fear avoidance.  There were strong associations between pain disability and depression. The associations between fear avoidance and depression, coping and pain disability all became stronger over time, as did the associations between pain disability and pain intensity.

Click here for the final report.


Safe Work for an Aging Workforce
- project by Andrew Dolhy Ergonomics Inc.

The WCB commissioned a report by Andrew Dolhy Ergonomics Inc. to increase awareness among small businesses of the health and safety issues related to older workers and review ergonomic standards in small businesses.

Forty small businesses in the construction, manufacturing, service and business sectors were selected for an occupational health and safety risk assessment that included ergonomic assessments. The analysis of workplace hazards, the application of ergonomic standards and the implementation of health and safety improvements have been completed and compiled into a reference manual.

Click here for the final report, and click here to read the reference manual.  

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