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Trusted evidence. Informed decisions. Better health.
December 2016
What's new?

New on our website: search terms for insurance medicine related articles

Our new website ‘Resources’ links interested users to search filters offered by Cochrane Work, HIRU, McMaster's Health Information Research Unit, GIN, the Guideline International Network and others. Search filters can help to find in an efficient way evidence for a specific (research) question by combining several search terms that have been combined and pretested by librarians and / or researchers. You will find search filters for prognostic or diagnostic studies, for quantitative studies, studies in general or for systematic reviews. Insurance medicine professionals who search for specific kind of evidence may benefit from this new service.
Webinar on return to work after depression

Cochrane Work has started monthly webinars* on Cochrane reviews about occupational health topics, many of which address core issues of insurance medicine. The next webinar “Interventions to improve return to work in depressed people” reports the results of a wide spectrum of interventions tested on more than 5’000 patients in 23 studies. The author, Karen Nieuwenhuijsen, a Dutch researcher from Amsterdam, will share her findings with a worldwide community.   

The webinar will take place on Wednesday 25th January at 16:00 CET. We will inform you closer to the date on how to sign-up.

* Webinars are online seminars that work like a phone conference with a presentation and allow for audience participation.


Work disability and return to work in an international context at this year's DICIM congress
This year’s Dutch International Congress on Insurance Medicine offered lectures on the impact of psychosocial obstacles to recovery and return to work following accidents. In his lecture about prevention of work disability and return to work in an aging workforce, Professor Glenn Pransky, Director of the Center for Disability Research at the Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety, USA, emphasized the importance of return to work interventions to be tailored to the unique social and cultural, physical and interpersonal aspects of the worker. Participants took advantage of the large number of small group sessions that facilitated interactive exchange with the speakers to share their national experience.
Evidence-based insurance medicine - in a nutshell

CIM-members Rob Kok, an experienced insurance physician, and Frederieke Schaafsma, senior resesarcher, held two illustrative workshops of 30 minutes on how to practice evidence-based insurance medicine when time is short. Using two real case scenarios, they interactively led participants through the steps of ebm, starting with framing the question and critically appraising two systematic reviews. Applying the research findings to the cases resulted in lively and sometimes controversial discussions demonstrating that evidence does not make decisions, rather decision making integrates evidence with the doctors' experience, and societal values and claimants' preferences and choices.
What's going on within Cochrane
Translate Cochrane evidence on insurance medicine into your native language
Research shows that English language poses a barrier for the dissemination of Cochrane reviews in non-English speaking countries. This is also true for the insurance medicine community. To make Cochrane reviews more accessible, Cochrane strives to increase the number of plain language summaries of Cochrane reviews translated into different languages. Project groups within Cochrane supervise translator volunteers of meanwhile 13 languages (including German, French, Spanish). The project groups offer support to volunteers and ultimately edit the translations and thereby ensure Cochrane’s quality standards. If you would like to help your colleagues to better understand Cochrane evidence on insurance medicine topics in your native language, contact Rebecca Weida.
Welcome, Cochrane Rehabilitation!
Recently, the Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine community registered its group ‘Cochrane Rehabilitation’.

Cochrane Rehabilitation and Cochrane Insurance Medicine share a substantial number of topics, such as medical evaluations, return to work activities or disability, although the perspective varies. This relationship offers great opportunities for collaboration and enlarges both our networks.

Already today, Cochrane Rehabilitation is supported by an international network of collaborators from 49 countries. Professor Stefano Negrini, the group’s director, is located at the department of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine of the University of Brescia, Italy. The group is coordinated by Dr. Carlotte Kiekens, Department of Physical & Rehabilitation Medicine (PRM) at the University Hospitals Leuven.
Knowledge translation: building a bridge between Cochrane and its stakeholders
There is increasing awareness within Cochrane that our reviews should reach more health care practitioners, patients and decision makers. Cochrane spent a half-day symposium with Colloquium attendants to interactively work out what knowledge translation could mean for Cochrane and individual groups. The goal was to focus efforts in generating evidence syntheses on topics of relevance to stakeholders, identify appropriate communication channels to the potential users and to communicate in way that are easily understood by the target group. Knowledge translation intends to bring research findings into the hands of practitioners and vice versa. Interactive, two-way communication is a typical feature of knowledge translation.
New Reviews on Evidence on the Web

How much evidence exists in the area of insurance medicine? More than most dare to think. On our website ‘Evidence on the Web’ we are continuously gathering evidence, and have added six systematic reviews - two on sick leave and four on return to work - three methodological papers and three on instruments. If you would like to suggest articles that match our inclusion criteria, please contact Rebecca Weida.

Systematic reviews

Sick Leave
Furlan, A. D., et al. (2012). "Systematic review of intervention practices for depression in the workplace." J Occup Rehabil 22(3): 312-321.
van Vilsteren M, van Oostrom SH, de Vet HC. "Workplace interventions for preventing work disability." Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2015 Oct 5;(10):
Return to Work
Dewa, C. S., et al. (2016). "Employer Best Practice Guidelines for the Return to Work of Workers on Mental Disorder-Related Disability Leave: A Systematic Review." Can J Psychiatry 61(3): 176-185.
Quatman-Yates, C., et al. (2016). "Physical Rehabilitation Interventions for Post-mTBI Symptoms Lasting Greater Than 2 Weeks: Systematic Review." Phys Ther.
Steenstra, I. A., et al. (2016). "Systematic Review of Prognostic Factors for Return to Work in Workers with Sub Acute and Chronic Low Back Pain." J Occup Rehabil.
Lagerveld, S. E., et al. (2010). "Factors associated with work participation and work functioning in depressed workers: a systematic review." J Occup Rehabil 20(3): 275-292.
Ferreira, M. L., et al. (2010). "Are neck pain scales and questionnaires compatible with the international classification of functioning, disability and health? A systematic review." Disabil Rehabil 32(19): 1539-1546.
Broersen, J. P., et al. (2011). "The dimensional structure of the functional abilities in cases of long-term sickness absence." BMC Public Health 11: 99.
Gross, D. P., et al. (2008). "The Patient-Specific Functional Scale: validity in workers' compensation claimants." Arch Phys Med Rehabil 89(7): 1294-1299.
Colangelo, A., et al. (2016). "Word Memory Test Predicts Recovery in Claimants With Work-Related Head Injury." Arch Phys Med Rehabil 97(5): 714-719.
Gross, D. P., et al. (2008). "The Patient-Specific Functional Scale: validity in workers' compensation claimants." Arch Phys Med Rehabil 89(7): 1294-1299.
Armijo-Olivo, S., et al. (2016). "Predictive value of the DASH tool for predicting return to work of injured workers with musculoskeletal disorders of the upper extremity." Occup Environ Med.
On a final note...
CIM contributor Bert Cornelius captured one of the challenges of insurance medicine in a comic...
Please circulate this newsletter to your colleagues and friends.
Our next newsletter will be published in February 2017.

We wish you all Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

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