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Comprehensive Occupational Rehabilitation Program

Research indicates that following musculoskeletal injuries, workers are at greater risk for permanent disability once problems last greater than 3-6 months (Waddell and Burton, 1999). 

Our Comprehensive Occupational Rehab Progam is designed to maximize function and abilities and foster independence and self-reliance through cognitive-behavioural pain management education, structured exercise, progressive work simulation activities and removal of barriers for participants to return to work and function.

The program is multi-disciplinary in nature, incorporating the expertise of physiotherapists, occupational therapists, a kinesiologist, counselor and psychologist.  Additional disciplines are available if individual needs are identified. 

Clients eligible for the program are typically adults of working age that meet the criteria for non-specific musculoskeletal injuries lasting beyond the 3-6 month timeframe that are identified as being chronic musculoskeletal injuries.  Eligible candidates must be experiencing occupational (work or ADL/care giving duties) difficulty and/or disability.  Medical diagnosis, behavioural characteristics or psychological status can preclude potential clients from participation.Supporting documentation regarding the nature of the injury/disability, medical status and previous treatment is required prior to intake into the program.

All programs are individualized based on assessment findings and goals, program components may include any of the following: 

Structured, progressive, individualized exercise program

Exercise program addresses:
 Aerobic fitness
 Whole body strengthening
 Whole body stretching
 Exercise specific to injury
 Core strengthening/stability
 Joint mechanics/posture
 Proprioception/balance
 Body mechanics

Work Simulation Activities

Work simulation activities address:

 Activity tolerance-whole body
 Activity tolerance-joint specific
 Use of proper body mechanics
 Work behaviours

Cognitive Behavioural Pain Management Education Sessions

Education regarding nature of client’s condition is also expected.
Education classes include (but are not limited to):
 Orientation to the pain process and gate control theory
 Pain triggers
 Pain flare-ups
 Hurt vs. Harm
 Stress Management
 Goal Setting
 Activity Pacing and energy conservation
 Relaxation techniques
 Coping techniques
 Sleep
 Medication
 Nutrition
 Priorities and Time Management techniques
 Back Care
 Neck Care
 Ergonomics
 Body mechanics/safe work practices
 Exercise and fitness
 Work Values
 Depression/anxiety

Individual Counseling

The OT/Counselor will provide individual counseling based on the need of the client.  For clients requiring additional psychological intervention, a referral to a clinical psychologist will be made.  The addition of family members into counseling will be considered on an individual basis.

Physiotherapy Treatment

Physiotherapy treatment/modalities are available to program clients and will be considered on an individual basis.

Occupational Therapy Intervention

In an effort to foster independence at home, the program occupational therapist is available to conduct a home assessment and make recommendations regarding re-activation of activities of daily living, personal care and household tasks and adaptive equipment needs.

Vocational Counseling

Liaise with referral source, client, and employer to facilitate effective transition to return to work and encourage healthy work behaviours upon return to the work force.

Vocational Assessment

In the event that return to work (same occupation) is not feasible, a detailed vocational assessment addressing client strengths, weaknesses and the identification of possible suitable career options is available.  A labour market survey can also be included.  Request for additional testing/funding will be required to conduct a vocational assessment.

Job Coaching

The use of structured intervention techniques to help employees learn to perform job tasks to specification and learn interpersonal skills necessary to become an accepted worker.

Graduated Return to Work Program

Individualized action plan to return worker to gainful employment over a set period of time.  This is usually outlined over 4-6 weeks with a gradual increase in hours coupled with a decrease in work restrictions.

Community Based Exercise Therapy

Upon discharge from program the kinesiologist is available to instruct clients on an independent exercise curriculum at a community-based facility.

Jobsite Intervention/Ergonomic Assessment

Kinesiologist is available to perform worksite visits to identify job demands/essential tasks, ergonomic barriers and ergonomic equipment needs to facilitate safe return to work.  Can also be performed after client has returned to work as follow up and instruction on proper body mechanics, safe work practices and safety in the workplace.

This CARF Accredited program is offered at Peterborough Physiotherapy & Sports Injuries Clinic for further information contact us at 705-741-2284.

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