People with mental illness have high rates of unemployment and underemployment. Hong Kong is interested in investigating new ways to assist this population with employment. Research is needed.
The purpose of this article is to report on the vocational outcomes of people with mental illness participating in a supported employment (SE) program in Hong Kong.
The setting was community vocational rehabilitation providers and various places of business in Hong Kong.
The study sample included 748 individuals with mental illness who enrolled in supported employment programs in Hong Kong.
Employment data was collected on participants, including wages and job tenure was collected.
The intervention was the Individual Placement and Support model of supported employment.
There was no control or comparison group.
Of the 748 participants, 458 (61.2%) obtained competitive employment. The mean job tenure was 151 days. The mean salary was HK$4,561 (US$585.00) for full-time jobs and $2,368 (US$304.00) for part-time jobs. The majority of participants (62.4%) could sustain their job placement for more than 30 days, 110 (24.0%) participants could work for more than six months, and 59 (12.9%) could maintain their jobs for more than one year.
This study concluded that IPS programs could improve vocational outcomes for people with mental illness in Hong Kong. Recommendations for future research on evaluation of the effectiveness of SE program and for further development of SE in Hong Kong were suggested.