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14.11.2017 Open Access

Short-Term and Long-Term Outcomes of a Vocational Rehabilitation Program for Patients with Acquired Brain Injury in The Netherlands

Journal of Occupational Rehabilitation
Caroline H. van Dongen, Paulien H. Goossens, Inge E. van Zee, Kirsten N. Verpoort, Thea P. M. Vliet Vlieland, Judith M. van Velzen


Purpose To describe short-term and long-term work status after a vocational rehabilitation (VR) program in patients with acquired brain injury (ABI) in the Netherlands. Methods Patients with ABI who participated in a VR program between 2007 and 2010 were included in this study. The 4-month VR program included a multidisciplinary assessment, three meetings with all stakeholders and reintegration with coaching on the job. Short-term results at the end of the VR program were based on data extracted from medical records. Long-term results were determined at 3–6 years (mean 4.4 years) after the program based on patient-reported data. Outcome measures included return to work, hours at work and task adjustments. Results Fifty-eight patients were included [mean age 48 (SD 9.4) years; n = 33 male; all working before ABI]. After the intervention, 50 patients (86%) had returned to work, working on average 60% of their former hours. Working tasks were adjusted in 48 patients. At long-term follow-up 28 patients had paid work, working on average 5.3 h more than immediately after the VR program. Conclusions Directly after the intervention 86% of the patients had returned to work. After 3–6 years, 64% of these patients were still working in a paid job.

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