Work resumption after vocational rehabilitation: A follow-up two years after completed rehabilitation

Authors: Ahlgren A, Bergroth A, Ekholm J, Schüldt K
Year Published 2007
Publication Work: A Journal of Prevention, Assessment and Rehabilitation
Volume 23
Number 4
Pages 343-354
Publisher IOS Press

Sick leave absence and disability have become burdensome both socially and financially. The causes of sickness absence are numerous and so are the factors that, positively and negatively, are associated with successful rehabilitation defined as work resumption after vocational rehabilitation (VR) One of the key factors important for the outcome of VR services is early rehabilitation intervention.


The primary objective of this study was to evaluate work resumption among individuals that were on sick leave and then participated in VR services. The aim of the follow-up was to assess the stability of the outcome of VR over time and to analyze factors of importance for clients that remained at work.


The setting was various vocational rehabilitation programs.


A review of 815 cases where the clients had taken part in vocational rehabilitation.

Data Collection

The data was case outcome reviews.


There was no control or comparison condition.


Of the clients studied, 52.4% had attained full working capacity directly after completed VR. The proportion had decreased to 37.4% two years later. One factor that differed between those who resumed work and those who returned to sick leave was the duration of the previous sick-leave period. Those who returned to work had had shorter sick leave, had jobs to return to and had received job training as a vocational rehabilitation measure.


The clients with the best chances of being in work two years after completing vocational rehabilitation were those with short sick leave absence, had job training through vocational rehabilitation, between the ages of 16-29 and were employed in industry

Disabilities Emotional disturbance
Populations Male | Female
Outcomes Return to work
Research Design Observational
Peer Reviewed