Discussion group networks in occupational medicine: A tool for continuing education to promote the integration of workers with disabilities

Lilah Rinsky-Halivni*, Yehuda Lerman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Despite their legal rights, individuals with disabilities face numerous obstacles to integration in the workplace which can result in their discharge from the labor force. Currently occupational physicians have few resources to help decide whether to integrate disabled workers in pre-placement, or in cases of return-to-work. Methods: A network of 13 discussion groups comprised of the occupational physicians of each regional clinic of a large Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) in Israel was created to deal with disability management dilemmas. A moderator compiles and shares the physicians’ opinions and experiences with all network members thus assisting the consulting physician in decision-making. Results: Successful management of three representative cases is described to illustrate real-life implementations of this network. Conclusion: The network enables both the consulting and other physicians to tap a large knowledge base and decision-making experience concerning cases of occupational disability management, contributing to professional development and improved service delivery.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)344-350
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Industrial Medicine
Volume61
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2018

Keywords

  • continuing medical education
  • disability management
  • discussion groups
  • fitness for work
  • occupational medicine
  • professional development
  • return to work
  • workers with disabilities
  • workplace accommodations

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