top of page

Publications of 2022

Kumara G. Somasundram, Amy Hackney, Marcus Yung, Jodi Oakman, Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia, Amin Yazdani
 

P Eftekhar; N Othman; Andrea Duncan; S Alotaibi; A M Schuster; Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia

Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia; L Osipenko; P Eftekhar; N Othman; S Alotaibi; A M Schuster; H Sun Suh; Andrea Duncan

The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically changed various aspects of our lives, including how we work. Since the start of the pandemic, numerous organizations in Canada have mandated their employees to work from home (WFH) on a full-time basis. The rapid rise in the number of remote workers and the possibility for WFH continuing in the future signifies the importance of understanding the impacts of WFH on employee well-being over the course of the pandemic in Canada.

We present the findings of two surveys (initial and 6-month follow-up) to investigate the effects of mandatory WFH arrangements on worker health during the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada. We examined the changes in employees’ mental and physical health. Initial survey was completed between October 2020 and December 2020 (n = 1617); follow-up survey was completed between May 2021 and June 2021 (n = 382).

Our analyses showed significant changes in various aspects of employee mental and physical health. Burnout, stress, general mental health, and job insecurity levels significantly decreased between the two time periods. Work-related sedentary behaviour reduced over time; however, the average proportion of time spent sitting during work hours was more than 80% in both surveys. Employees received more help and feedback from their colleagues and experienced a better sense of community with their co-workers over time.

The findings can inform workers and organizations on the mental and physical health effects of mandatory WFH arrangements. By understanding the impacts of WFH, employers can develop effective strategies and implement policies that help protect workers’ health and well-being.

Introduction: This study aims to explore how essential workers in Europe differed from the rest of
the population in terms of their experiences of social life, access to services, mental well-being, and
perceived benefits of the lockdown.


Methods: This study used a descriptive analysis to evaluate the overall experiences of the essential
workers in Europe. Data analyzed in this study is part of a larger global online cross-sectional survey
conducted during April to November 2020 involving post-secondary staff, students and the general
population (remote workers). Data of 19,794 participants are included in the current study, and
analysis is based on a comparison of participants who self-identified as essential workers, with those
who did not using the chi-square test.


Results: Mean age was 34.5 years (SD =13.0) for essential workers and 30.2 years (SD =12.4) for the
general population (remote workers). While 13.6% of all respondents were essential workers, the
proportion was more among older ages (30 and above), females, and those who lived in suburbs.
Overall, 46.8% of participants reported increased levels of stress during week 1-2 (51% of essential
workers and 46.1% of the other participants, p<0.001). More essential workers reported their social
life being great than the rest of the population (25.3% vs. 16.4%, p<0.001), and COVID-19 symptoms
(13.6 vs 10.5%, p<0.001). In addition, fewer reported having troubled relationships (16.3% vs. 18.6%,
J Health Soc Sci 2022, 7, 3, 325–336. Doi: 10.19204/2022/MPCT7
326 p<0.001) or being able to do sufficient exercise (35.7% vs. 40.5%, p<0.001) than the general population
(remote workers).

Objectives: The aim of this study was to gain a preliminary, broad-level understanding of how the first lockdown impacted post-secondary students, faculty, and staff worldwide.
Methods: The data were obtained via a global online cross-sectional questionnaire survey using a mixed-method design and disseminated to university students, faculty, and staff from April to November 2020. The data were categorized in four themes/categories: (1) social life and relationships, (2) access to services, (3) health experiences, and (4) impact on mental health well-being.

Results: The survey included 27,804 participants from 121 countries and 6 continents. The majority of participants were from Europe (73.6%), female (59.2%), under 30 years of age (64.0%), living in large urban areas (61.3%), %), and from middle-income families (66.7%). Approximately 28.4% of respondents reported that the lockdown negatively impacted their social life, while 21.2% reported the lockdown had a positive impact. A total of 39.2% reported having issues accessing products or services, including essentials, such as groceries, or medical services. In addition, respondents reported an increase in stress and anxiety levels and a decrease in quality of life during the first 2 weeks of the lockdown.

Conclusions: The COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown measures had an evident impact on the lives of post-secondary students, faculty, and staff. Further research is required to inform and improve policies to support these populations at both institutional and national levels.

Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia; N Nadesar; Y Sun; M Ott; G Sithamparanathan; P Thakkar

M Jojoa; P Eftekhar; Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia; B Garcia-Zapirain

Joyce Lo; Yusra Fayyaz; Sharan Jaswal; Basem Gohar; Amin Yazdani; Vijay Kumar Chattu; Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia

Purpose: Worldwide, spinal cord injuries are associated with diminished participation in the labor market. Inconclusive reporting and differences between workplace settings for individuals with spinal cord injury (SCI) make conceptualizing return to work rates among this population inherently challenging. The objectives of this study are to explore factors associated with return to work (RTW) following an SCI. Moreover, the factors were classified according to the work disability prevention framework. Finally, we conducted a meta-analysis of the prevalence of RTW following an SCI.


Methods: Original articles were identified through a literature search in four health databases. The study followed the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses guidelines for the mapping and identification of records. Included studies contained primary studies that included the nature of the injury, antecedent factors associated with the injury, and study characteristics and RTW outcomes. Exclusion criteria for the studies included if there was no discussion of RTW outcomes, systematic reviews, and meta-analyses.


Results: A total of 461 full-text articles were assessed for eligibility, and eight studies were included and assessed using the Critical Appraisal Skills Programme checklist, Risk of Bias, and Newcastle–Ottawa Scale. Four studies identified personal system factors, four identified healthcare system factors, two identified compensation system factors, and one identified workplace system factors.
 

Conclusions: Attempts to optimize RTW among persons with SCI are inherently difficult due to the diversity of this client population. Findings from the studies included in this systematic review support the utility of interventions for facilitating RTW, such as vocational rehabilitation and workplace accommodations, while simultaneously acknowledging the limitations in identifying specific interventions as facilitatory or inhibitory throughout the process.

COVID-19 is a disease that affects the quality of life in all aspects. However, the government policy applied in 2020 impacted the lifestyle of the whole world. In this sense, the study of sentiments of people in different countries is a very important task to face future challenges related to lockdown caused by a virus. To contribute to this objective, we have proposed a natural language processing model with the aim to detect positive and negative feelings in open-text answers obtained from a survey in pandemic times. We have proposed a distilBERT transformer model to carry out this task. We have used three approaches to perform a comparison, obtaining for our best model the following average metrics: Accuracy: 0.823, Precision: 0.826, Recall: 0.793 and F1 Score: 0.803. 

Job satisfaction has been widely studied across several healthcare disciplines and is correlated with important outcomes such as job performance and employee mental health. However, there is limited research on job satisfaction among medical laboratory professionals (MLPs), a key healthcare group that aids in diagnosis, treatment, and patient care. The objective of this study is to examine the demographic and psychosocial factors associated with job satisfaction for MLPs in Ontario, Canada during the COVID-19 pandemic. A survey was administered to medical laboratory technologists (MLTs) and medical laboratory technicians/assistants (MLT/As) in Ontario, Canada. The survey included demographic questions and items from the Copenhagen Psychosocial Questionnaire, third edition. Binary logistic regressions were used to examine the association between job satisfaction and demographic variables and psychosocial work factors. There were 688 MLPs included in the analytic sample (72.12% response rate). Having a higher sense of community at work was correlated with higher job satisfaction in both MLT (OR = 2.22, 95% CI: 1.07–4.77) and MLT/A (OR = 3.85, 95% CI: 1.12–14.06). In addition, having higher stress was correlated with lower job satisfaction in both MLT (OR = 0.32, 95% CI: 0.18–0.57) and MLT/A (OR = 0.26, 95% CI: 0.10–0.66). This study provides preliminary evidence on factors associated with job satisfaction in MLT and MLT/A. The findings can be used to support organizational practices and policies to improve psychosocial work factors.

 Background: Paramedics are exposed to multiple stressors in the workplace. They are more likely to develop occupational-related stress conditions compared to other occupations. This study focused on understanding the factors affecting QoWL of paramedics in northern Ontario, Canada; a particular focus was on understanding the personal and organizational factors, such as practicing community paramedicine (CP), which may be associated with Quality of Work Life (QoWL).

 

Methods:Paramedic QoWL was assessed using an online survey that was distributed to approximately 879 paramedics across northern Ontario. The survey included the 23-Item Work- Related Quality of Work Life Scale. Data analysis involved linear regressions with nine predictor variables deemed to be related to QoWL for paramedics with QoWL and its six subscales as dependent variables. Multiple linear regressions were used to assess the personal and organizational factors, such as practicing of CP, which predicted QoWL.

Results: One hundred and ninety-seven paramedics completed the questionnaire. Overall, the mean QoWL score of all paramedic participants was 73.99, and this average compared to relevant published norms for other occupations. Factors that were most associated with higher QoWL were, experience practicing CP (p < 0.05), number of sick days/year (p < 0.01), and higher self- rated mental health (p < 0.001).

 

Conclusion: Higher paramedic QoWL appears to be associated with many factors such as number of sick days per year, self-rated mental health, and participation in CP. EMS organizations should consider establishing necessary workplace health promotion strategies that are targeted at improving QoWL for paramedics.

Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia; J Nixon; S D Ritchie; E F Wenghofer; D Vanderburgh; J E Sherman

Michal Matuszewski , Aleksandra Gasecka, Jakub M Zimodro , Zofia Zadorozna , Michal Pruc, Magdalena Borkowska , Alla Navolokina, Gabriella Nucera, Murat Yildirm, Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia, Francesco Chirico, Lukasz Szarpak

B Gohar; Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia

Introduction: Infection with SARS-CoV-2 is particularly hazardous in patients with cardiovascular
pathology, diabetes or chronic lung disease. Arginine vasopressin (AVP), an antidiuretic hormone secreted in response to hemodynamic and osmotic disturbances plays a crucial role in maintenance of cardiovascular homeostasis. Copeptin has shown promising results regarding its utility in prediction of morbidity and mortality of COVID-19. Therefore, we conducted a meta-analysis to
evaluate the role of copeptin in risk stratification in COVID-19.


Methods: This study was designed as a systematic review and meta-analysis. We systematically
searched the following databases: Scopus, Web of Science, PubMed, EMBASE, Cochrane Library
through September 10th, 2022. Methodological quality was assessed using the Cochrane risk of-bias tool.


Results: Pooled analysis of four trials showed that mean copeptin plasma concentrations were higher
in patients with severe course of COVID-19 than in patients with non-severe course of the disease
(26.64 ± 13.59 vs. 16.75 ± 6.13, respectively; MD=9.39; 95%CI: 1.38 to 17.40; I2=99%; p=0.02).
Furthermore, higher copeptin concentrations in COVID-19 patients who died than in those who
survived (13.25 ± 3.23 vs. 44.65 ± 26.92, respectively; MD=-31.40; 95%CI: -42.93 to -19.87; p<0.001).


Discussion: Results from the present meta-analysis revealed that increased copeptin plasma
concentrations found in COVID-19 patients are associated with the severity of the disease. Copeptin
may assist in early identification of COVID-19 progression and possibly in prediction of adverse
outcomes, thus its use in risk stratification could be beneficial.

Objective: The purpose of this qualitative study was to understand the stressors and coping strategies of medical laboratory technologists (MLTs) and assistants (MLAs) working during the COVID-19 pandemic in Ontario, Canada.

Methods: In this descriptive qualitative study, we held two focus groups with MLTs and MLA who were working during the COVID-19 pandemic. The focus group sessions were transcribed verbatim followed by thematic analysis to develop codes and themes.

Findings: A total of 13 participants across Ontario were involved in our study, which included one MLT (n = 7) group and one MLA (n = 6) MLA. Overall, the stressors and coping methods identified between both focus groups were consistent. Our results revealed four main themes: (1) COVID-19 contributing to the notable and existing staff shortage; (2) the pandemic reinforced that medical laboratory employees are forgotten within the healthcare system; (3) a poor work environment exacerbated by the pandemic; and (4) a resilient and passionate group. Rich descriptions explained the underlying issues related to the themes.

Conclusions: MLTs and MLAs are critical members of the healthcare team and provide vital patient care services. This study explored their experiences working during the pandemic and offers timely recommendations to mitigate against occupational stressors.

A M Aniserowicz; F Safi; Heather Colquhoun; Jill Stier; Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia

Introduction Bipolar disorder (BD) is a severe mental health disorder that affects 2% of the adult population. Individuals with this disorder are at a higher risk for morbidity and functional difficulties. They may also experience significant challenges in their activities of daily living (ADLs). This systematic review will identify all available studies that examine subsets of ADLs that impact individuals with BD.

Methods and analysis MEDLINE, Embase, CINAHL and APA PsycINFO will be searched to identify observational studies that examined functioning, independence or performance across a variety of ADLs. Title and abstract, full-text screening and a risk of bias assessment will be conducted in duplicate. An overarching table that summarises the level of functioning across different ADLs or an ‘ADL profile’ will be developed, and if there are sufficient data, these will be separated based on the phases of BD, such as manic/hypomanic, depressed and euthymic.

Ethics and dissemination As this systematic review uses information from previous literature, this review does not require ethics approval. This review will help identify the trends in daily activities that individuals struggle with and can help healthcare practitioners identify specific areas of need for support. We plan to disseminate the results in a peer-reviewed journal and conferences targeting occupational therapists and mental health clinicians
We present the findings of two surveys (initial and 6-month follow-up) to investigate the effects of mandatory WFH arrangements on worker health during the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada. We examined the changes in employees’ mental and physical health. Initial survey was completed between October 2020 and December 2020 (n = 1617); follow-up survey was completed between May 2021 and June 2021 (n = 382).

 

Our analyses showed significant changes in various aspects of employee mental and physical health. Burnout, stress, general mental health, and job insecurity levels significantly decreased between the two time periods. Work-related sedentary behaviour reduced over time; however, the average proportion of time spent sitting during work hours was more than 80% in both surveys. Employees received more help and feedback from their colleagues and experienced a better sense of community with their co-workers over time.

The findings can inform workers and organizations on the mental and physical health effects of mandatory WFH arrangements. By understanding the impacts of WFH, employers can develop effective strategies and implement policies that help protect workers’ health and well-being.

Objectives: The study aimed to describe and compare nurses’ perceptions of role conflict by professional designation [registered nurse (RN) vs registered practical nurse (RPN)] in three primary areas of practice (emergency department, medical unit, and surgical unit).
 

Methods: This analysis used data (n = 1,981) from a large cross-sectional survey of a random sample of RNs and RPNs working as staff nurses in acute care hospitals in Ontario, Canada. Role conflict was measured by the Role Conflict Scale.
 

Results: A total of 1,981 participants (RN = 1,427, RPN = 554) met this study’s eligibility criteria and provided complete data. In general, RN and RPN mean total scale scores on role conflict hovered around the scale’s mid-point (2.72 to 3.22); however, RNs reported a higher mean score than RPNs in the emergency department (3.22 vs. 2.81), medical unit (2.95 vs 2.81) and surgical unit (2.90 vs 2.72). Where statistically significant differences were found, the effect sizes were negligible to medium in magnitude with the largest differences noted between RNs and RPNs working in the emergency department.
 

Conclusions: The results suggest the need to implement strategies that diminish role conflict for both RNs and RPNs.

Introduction: During the COVID-19 pandemic, teleworking affected the mental well-being of nearly all strata of the population. Teachers, who were employed to teach online courses during lockdown have been psychologically distressed. The primary aim of the current study was to estimate the prevalence and differences in the Burnout Syndrome (BOS) symptomatology in the light of gender, work position, teaching role, and subject taught. As a secondary aim, differences in perceived wellbeing were estimated through the contribution of individual factors.


Methods: An online cross-sectional survey was conducted from February -May 2021 to recruit a total of 361 teachers from all Italian regions. The Work-Life Balance scale, the Maslach Burnout Inventory, and an ad-hoc questionnaire with items on perceived physical well-being and perceived impact and
difficulty in remote work were utilized. Predictors associated with burnout and its subscales were examined using linear regression analyses.


Results: Burnout, measured as the co-existence of high emotional exhaustion (EE), high depersonalization (DP), and low personal accomplishment (PA) was revealed in 16.9% of teachers,
while high EE, high DP, and low PA were respectively measured in 35.2%, 13.2% and 35.2% of the sample. Variables, such as gender, work position, teaching role, and subject taught were all significant for group differences in perceived well-being or BOS dimensions among teachers.


Discussion: Our findings suggest that the implementation of occupational health programs and workplace health promotion programs for improving the mental well-being of teachers. In particular, a higher caution must be needed for implementing critical institutional changes, such as the wide
and rapid adoption of telecommuting.

Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia; M T Fox; S Sidani; S Dahlke; D Tregunno

Francesco Chirico, Pietro Crescenzo, Behdin Norwrouzi-Kia, Livio Tarchi, Kavita Batra, Giuseppe Ferrari, Murat Yildirim,Alessandra Romano, Gabriella Nucera,
, Serena Ripa ,Manoj Sharma, Michael Leiter

F Chirico; Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia

Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia; A Yazdani

Francesco Chirico,  Ilaria Capitanelli,, Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia, Aaron Howe, Kavita Batra, Manoj Sharma, Lukasz Szarpak, Michal Pruc, Gabriella Nucera , Giuseppe Ferrari, Claudio Giovanni  Cortese, Maria
Michela Gianino, Daniela  Acquadro-Mara

In many jurisdictions, the capacity to provide rehabilitation is significantly restricted or non-existent and fails to address the population's needs sufficiently. The extent and scope of unmet rehabilitation warrants an immediate and collaborative international effort and action by all stakeholders. This viewpoint article examined the promotion of equity in addressing the unmet rehabilitation needs through public policy action and the health lens that considers access to rehabilitation services as a
fundamental human right.

 

Based on the principles of access, equity, respect and human dignity, we
have included four recommendations including:

1) using a multidisciplinary approach to rehabilitation;

2) preventing disability and maximining functioning;

3) increasing the supply of rehabilitation professionals, and

4) engaging in meaningful activities.

 

Furthermore, this paper
provides recommendations to meet the World Health Organization’s sustainable development goals
and discuss how health policy can address these goals. 

Introduction: Animal-Assisted Interventions (AAIs) have been increasingly used in the workplace to mitigate the effect of work-related stress and improve psychological well-being among employees. Military workers returning home from combat and veterans face a high burden of post-traumatic stress disorders (PTSD). This systematic review aimed to investigate the potential benefits of AAIs on military workers and veterans affected by PTSD.
 

Methods: A systematic review was conducted across Scopus, PubMed Central/Medline, Web of
Science, and Google Scholar in December 2021 and June 2022 using predefined search criteria. All
types of studies published in the English language were included except editorials, commentaries,
and narrative reviews. Studies published from January 2001 to December 2021 were included. We
followed the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) 2020
reporting guidelines for this systematic review. The assessment of study quality was carried out with
a 16-item Quality Assessment Tool for Studies with Diverse Designs (QATSDD)


Results: Overall, 25 studies were finally included in this systematic review. Most of the AAIs were
canine-assisted programs (n=12) and therapeutic horseback riding or equine-assisted psychotherapy
(n=11). There was only one intervention study utilizing a pinnipeds-based program (n=1), while one study was based on several types of animals (n=1).
Out of 25 studies focusing on the effects of AAIs on PTSD in the military (n=3) and veterans (n=21),
the majority of them (n=18) observed significantly lower PTSD symptomatology following AAIs.
Three studies observed no statistically significant difference in PTSD symptomatology.


Discussion: Our findings indicated that implementing AAI programs among military workers and
veterans may improve their psychological well-being and reduce the severity of PTSD symptoms. Policymakers and occupational health services should consider adopting AAIs during military service and after military discharge to support the mental health of military workers.

F Serrano; Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia; B Oddson; R Bishai; J Casole; B Gohar

Objective: This cross-sectional study examined the self-perceived impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on 2,378 education workers in Ontario, Canada, during the second wave.

Methods: We examined six domains of functioning as per the short version of the World Health Organization Disability Assessment Schedule-2.0. Participants selected if their functioning had improved, remained unchanged or worsened during the pandemic for each item.

Results: Educational workers described a general worsening of functional activities since the beginning of the pandemic. Moderate-to-extreme challenges were reported for all six functional domains. These challenges appeared to aggravate functional challenges for workers with disability, as indicated by pre-existing work accommodations. Older participants reported worse mobility than younger participants; however, they appeared to have better coping skills in learning new tasks and maintaining friendships. Women were more likely to report difficulties in maintaining household responsibilities.

Conclusions: We consider the role of mental health challenges and pre-existing inequality as predictors of pandemic-related difficulties. Recommendations include more longitudinal research in this population and policymakers to incorporate a health promotion lens to support their education workers more proactively.

The objective of this study was to examine factors associated with burnout among medical laboratory technologists (MLT) in Ontario, Canada during the second wave of coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic.

Methods
We employed a cross-sectional design and used a self-reported questionnaire designed for MLT in Ontario, Canada.

Results
There were 441 (47.5% response rate) MLT who were included in the analytic sample. Most of the respondents were women, with a mean age of 43.1 and a standard deviation of 11.7. The prevalence of experiencing burnout was 72.3% for MLT. In the adjusted demographic model, those ≥50 (OR = 0.36, 95% CI: 0.22–0.59) were 0.36 or about one third as likely to experience burnout as those under 50. Similarly, those who held a university degree were less likely to experience burnout compared with high school degree (OR = 0.35, 95% CI: 0.15–0.79). In the adjusted occupational model, high quantitative demands (OR = 2.15, 95% CI: 1.21–3.88), high work pace (OR = 2.21, 95% CI: 1.25–3.98), high job insecurity (OR = 2.56, 95% CI: 1.39–4.82), high work life conflict (OR = 5.08, 95% CI: 2.75–9.64) and high job satisfaction (OR = 0.43, 95% CI: 0.20–0.88), high self-rated health (OR = 0.32, 95% CI: 0.17–0.56) were significant.

Conclusion
This study provides preliminary evidence regarding the factors associated with burnout in MLT. Additional research is needed to understand their relationship with workers health and well-being and in the delivery of health services.

Objectives: The overall objective of this proposed project is to examine the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the mental health, functioning and wellbeing of medical laboratory technologists (MLT) and medical laboratory technicians/assistants (MLT/A) in Ontario, Canada.

Methods: A cross-sectional study included a self-reported questionnaire for MLT and MLT/A in Ontario. The questionnaire included questions about demographics and occupational characteristics. Questions about mental health, functioning, well-being and psychosocial work environments were also included using validated questionnaires.

Results: There were 551 MLT and 401 MLT/A in the analytic sample. Most of the respondents were women. The mean age and standard deviation of the overall sample were 42.0 ± 11.8. MLT demonstrated higher quantitative demands, possibilities for development, and organizational justice compared to MLT/A. The scores of work pace, emotional demands, role conflicts, job insecurity, insecurity over working conditions and negative acts were higher for MLT/A than MLT. The WHODAS 2.0 scores of the respondents were 20.80 ± 6.68, higher than approximately 92% average people. For both groups, most respondents scored the COPSOQ-III domains as worse since COVID-19.

Conclusion: The study provides preliminary evidence regarding the workplace mental health outcomes of medical laboratory professionals in Ontario, Canada. The findings suggest that MLT and MLT/A experience psychosocial work conditions that impact mental health, functioning and disability. Accordingly, additional research is necessary to understand the experiences of medical laboratory professionals.

 

Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia; M T Fox; S Sidani; S Dahlke; D Tregunno

Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia; J Dong; B Gohar; M Hoad, Serena Ripa ,Manoj Sharma, Michael Leiter

Introduction: Health care programs evaluate prospective applicants using cognitive and non-cognitive criteria. The aim of this research was to develop and evaluate the psychometric properties of a measure to evaluate the non-cognitive criteria of admissions applications.
 

Method: A Masters of Occupational Therapy Written Submission Measure (MOTWSM) was developed and evaluated over 3 phases, using applicants’ written statements, resumes, and reference letters. Participants included 50 students who completed an occupational therapy program for determination of internal consistency and test-retest reliability. Additionally, 195 written submissions selected from the applicants who were admitted, waitlisted, and not admitted to the program were evaluated to determine inter-rater reliability using a two-way ANOVA. Analysis of 195 submissions using a one-way ANOVA determined the measure’s discriminative validity.
Findings


Results: indicated test-retest reliability of 0.95 and internal consistency reliability of 0.76. Inter-rater reliability reported a Cronbach’s alpha coefficient of 0.86 using a horizontal scoring method. Good discriminative validity was established.
 

Conclusion: The MOTWSM is a reliable and valid measure that can be used to evaluate the non-cognitive criteria of admissions applications in health profession programs. Use of this measure can facilitate selection of the highest caliber of students.

Jill Stier; Jill I Cameron; Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia; C Brammer; S Asher; D Lipszyc

F Chirico; K Batra; G Nucera; Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia; M Pruc; L Szarpak; M Sharma

A Hackney; M Yung; K G Somasundram; Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia; J Oakman; A Yazdani

Monkeypox is a zoonotic disease caused by the monkeypox virus (MPXV), which produces lesions similar to smallpox among human beings. The MPXV outbreak (which is endemic to rainforest African countries) has emerged as a major global concern. In recent years, exposure to MPXV was reported among certain occupational groups, including veterinary staff, pet store employees, animal distributors, and healthcare workers (HCWs), particularly those who work in frontline positions. Hospitals provide a conducive environment for transmitting infectious diseases(e.g., COVID-19 transmission). This warrants the need to develop an effective infection control management plan. Therefore, the authors of this commentary sought to describe a framework for workplace risk assessment and prevention strategies for controlling infection transmission in occupational settings (e.g. hospitals). Occupational health programs, vaccination campaigns at work sites, and educational initiatives to increase knowledge and awareness about effective infection control measures among medical staff and the general public will be essential to prevent future outbreaks. A comprehensive strategy based on an enhanced and multidisciplinary activity coordinated by occupational health services and close collaboration between occupational and public health stakeholders will be warranted. National outbreak preparedness and global coordination efforts for improving the syndemic surveillance of the current global outbreaks in developing and developed countries, per the "One Health" approach, may tackle even the current MPXV outbreak and prevent the spread of the virus among HCWs and the community. Take-home message: A comprehensive strategy by local and international stakeholders based on strict cooperation between occupational and public health stakeholders may prevent hospital monkeypox outbreaks.

Work-from-home has become an increasingly adopted practice globally. Given the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic, such arrangements have risen substantially in a short timeframe. Work-from-home has been associated with several physical and mental health outcomes. This relationship has been supported by previous research; however, these health and safety issues often receive little resources and attention from business perspectives compared to organizational and worker performance and productivity. Therefore, aligning work-from-home practices with business goals may help catalyze awareness from decision makers and serve to effectively implement work-from-home policies. We conducted a review to synthesize current knowledge on the impact of work-from-home arrangements on personal and organizational performance and productivity. Four large databases including Scopus, PubMed, PsychInfo, and Business Source Complete were systematically searched. Through a two-step screening process, we selected and extracted data from 37 relevant articles. Key search terms surrounded two core concepts: work-from-home and productivity/performance. Of the articles published prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, 79% (n = 19) demonstrated that work-from-home increased productivity and performance whereas 21% (n = 5) showed mixed or no effects. Of the articles published during the pandemic, 23% (n = 3) showed positive effects, 38% (n = 5) revealed mixed results, and 38% (n = 5) showed negative effects. Findings suggest that non-mandatory work-from-home arrangements can have positive impacts on productivity and performance. When work-from-home becomes mandatory and full-time, or external factors (i.e., COVID-19 pandemic) are at play, the overall impacts are less positive and can be detrimental to productivity and performance. Results will help foster an understanding of the impact of work-from-home on productivity and performance and inform the development of organizational strategies to create an effective, resilient, and inclusive work-from-home workplace by helping to effectively implement work-from-home policies that are aligned with business goals.

Background: The increasing prevalence and subsequent mortality due to non-communicable diseases (NCDs) among Indian prisoners are often ignored by policymakers. This systematic review and meta-analysis aim to analyze the rising burden of Noncommunicable Diseases in Indian prisons and estimate the pooled prevalence of depression among Indian prisoners.

 

Methods: A total 9 studies were chosen in accordance with PRISMA guidelines that investigated the burden of NCDs in Indian prisons and were published between January 2010 and August 2022. Statistical analysis was performed in STATA Version 16 software, and the funnel plot was used to identify publication bias.

 

Results: A total of 167 articles were identified, and 9 were included in this analysis. The pooled prevalence of depression among prisoners was 48.78% (95% CI, 27.24–70.55%). According to the review, prisoners showed a significant prevalence of moderate to severe depression, dental caries, poor periodontal condition, and suicide ideation. This study is the first to analyze NCDs prevalence among Indian prisoners. Poor mental and dental health standards and the virtual absence of healthcare facilities necessitate governmental actions to boost inmates’ health. It is essential to develop preventative interventions for this extremely isolated and vulnerable group in addition to diagnosing and treating noncommunicable diseases.

 

Conclusions: Our study findings will enable decision-makers to structure and develop appropriate preventative and curative programs for inmates’ general wellbeing.

Subhanwita Manna; Snehasish Tripathy; Rahul Kumar Sah; Bijaya Kumar Padhi; Sandeep Kaur; Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia; Vijay Kumar Chattu

 B B Du; S Rezvani; P Bigelow; Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia; V M Boscart; M Yung; A Yazdani

Andrea D. Furlan (Toronto); S Harbin; F F Vieira; E Irvin; C N Severin; Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia; M Tiong; A Adisesh

Emergency medical services (EMS) personnel are at high risk for adverse mental health outcomes during disease outbreaks. To support the development of evidence-informed mitigation strategies, we conducted a scoping review to identify the extent of research pertaining to EMS personnel's mental health during disease outbreaks and summarized key factors associated with mental health outcomes. We systematically searched three databases for articles containing keywords within three concepts: EMS personnel, disease outbreaks, and mental health. We screened and retained original peer-reviewed articles that discussed, in English, EMS personnel's mental health during disease outbreaks. Where inferential statistics were reported, the associations between individual and work-related factors and mental health outcomes were synthesized. Twenty-five articles were eligible for data extraction. Our findings suggest that many of the contributing factors for adverse mental health outcomes are related to inadequacies in fulfilling EMS personnel's basic safety and informational needs. In preparation for future disease outbreaks, resources should be prioritized toward ensuring adequate provisions of personal protective equipment and infection prevention and control training. This scoping review serves as a launching pad for further research and intervention development.
 

Primary care physicians are uniquely positioned to assist ill and injured workers to stay-at-work or to return-to-work. Purpose The purpose of this scoping review is to identify primary care physicians’ learning needs in returning ill or injured workers to work and to identify gaps to guide future research. Methods We used established methodologies developed by Arksey and O’Malley, Cochrane and adapted by the Systematic Review Program at the Institute for Work & Health. We used Distiller SR©, an online systematic review software to screen for relevance and perform data extraction. We followed the PRISMA for Scoping Reviews checklist for reporting. Results We screened 2106 titles and abstracts, 375 full-text papers for relevance and included 44 studies for qualitative synthesis. The first learning need was related to administrative tasks. These included (1) appropriate record-keeping, (2) time management to review occupational information, (3) communication skills to provide clear, sufficient and relevant factual information, (4) coordination of services between different stakeholders, and (5) collaboration within teams and between different professions. The second learning need was related to attitudes and beliefs and included intrinsic biases, self-confidence, role clarity and culture of blaming the patient. The third learning need was related to specific knowledge and included work capacity assessments and needs for sick leave, environmental exposures, disclosure of information, prognosis of certain conditions and care to certain groups such as adolescents and pregnant workers. The fourth learning need was related to awareness of services and tools. Conclusions There are many opportunities to improve medical education for physicians in training or in continuing medical education to improve care for workers with an illness or injury that affect their work.

K G Somasundram; A Hackney; M Yung; B Du; J Oakman; Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia; A Yazdani

 F Safi; A M Aniserowicz; Heather Colquhoun; Jill Stier; Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia

Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia; G Sithamparanathan; N Nadesar; B Gohar; M Ott

Background: The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically changed various aspects of our lives, including how we work. Since the start of the pandemic, numerous organizations in Canada have mandated their employees to work from home (WFH) on a full-time basis. The rapid rise in the number of remote workers and the possibility for WFH continuing in the future signifies the importance of understanding the health and well-being of employees working from home over the course of the pandemic in Canada. We present the findings of two surveys (initial and 6-month follow-up) to examine the health and well-being of WFH employees during the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada. We analyzed the changes in mental and physical health and well-being of employees who were working from home between two time points during the pandemic.

 

Methods: Initial survey was completed between October 2020 and December 2020 (n = 1617); follow-up survey was completed between May 2021 and June 2021 (n = 382). We calculated the frequencies for survey questions involving demographics, WFH preferences, workstation setup training, employment situation, provision of hardware technologies, provision and usage of software technologies, and organization’s return to work plan. We conducted Wilcoxon signed-rank tests to analyze the within-individual changes in mental and physical health and well-being of the 382 respondents who completed both the initial and follow-up surveys.

Results: Our analyses showed significant changes in various aspects of employee mental and physical health and well-being. Burnout, stress, general mental health, and job insecurity levels significantly decreased between the two time periods. Work-related sedentary behaviour reduced over time; however, the average proportion of time spent sitting during work hours was more than 80% in both surveys. Employees received more help and feedback from their colleagues and experienced a better sense of community with their co-workers over time.

Conclusion: The findings can inform workers and organizations on the changes in mental and physical health and well-being of employees working from home during the pandemic. By understanding the changes in worker health and well-being, employers can develop effective strategies and implement policies that help protect employees’ health and well-being.

Eating disorders (ED) can reduce quality of life by limiting participation and performance in social and occupational roles, including paid or unpaid work. The association between ED pathologies and work participation and performance must be well understood to strengthen vocational rehabilitation programmes and prevent occupational disruptions in the ED population. The aims of this study are: (1) to examine the degree of association between ED pathologies and work participation and performance in 15-year-olds and older; (2) to highlight the specific ED symptoms that are most correlated with changes in work performance and participation; (3) to compile the most common metrics and assessments used to measure work participation and performance with ED.

Methods: Medline, Embase, CINAHL, Web of Science, PsycINFO, and Cochrane Library will be searched for observational and experimental studies that meet the following criteria: (1) a clinical sample of typical or atypical ED; (2) paid or unpaid employment or training; (3) an association between ED pathologies and work participation or performance. Unpublished data will also be examined. Title and abstract, and full-text screening will be conducted in duplicate. Risk of bias and quality of evidence assessments will be completed. A random-effect meta-analysis will be performed.

Discussion: This synthesis can clarify knowledge and gaps around the impact of ED on work functioning, thereby allowing better evaluation, improvements and development of current workplace assessments, interventions, and policies.

Introduction: Healthcare workers’ work performance and mental health are associated with positive mental health outcomes and directly related to increased productivity and decreased disability costs.

Methods: We conducted a systematic review to identify factors associated with work performance of healthcare workers during a pandemic and conducted a meta-analysis of the prevalence of mental health outcomes in this context. Primary papers were collected and analysed using the Population/Intervention/Comparison/Outcome framework and using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses guidelines. To critically appraise the studies included in the review, we used the AXIS appraisal tool to assess each cross-sectional study’s quality.

Results: The study identified nine factors associated with the work performance and mental health of healthcare workers, including experiencing feelings of depression, anxiety, having inadequate support, experiencing occupational stress, decreased productivity, lack of workplace preparedness, financial concerns associated with changes in income and daily living, fear of transmission and burnout/fatigue.

Conclusion: There is a rapidly rising need to address the work performance and mental health of healthcare workers providing timely care to patients. Regular and sustained interventions, including the use of information and communication technologies such as telehealth, are warranted.

Satapathy, Prakasini, Parimala Mohanty, Subhanwita Manna, Muhammad A. Shamim, Priyanka Prasad Rao, Arun Kumar Aggarwal, Jagdish Khubchandani, Aroop Mohanty, Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia, Vijay Kumar Chattu, Bijaya Kumar Padhi, Alfonso J. Rodriguez-Morales, and Ranjit Sah.

Ali Bani-Fatemi; Marcos Sanches; Aaron S. Howe; Joyce Lo; Sharan Jaswal; Vijay Kumar Chattu; Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia

Background: Monkeypox is a global public health concern, given the recent outbreaks in non-endemic countries where little scientific evidence exists on the disease. Specifically, there is a lack of data on asymptomatic monkeypox virus infection. This study aims to evaluate the overall prevalence of asymptomatic monkeypox virus infection.

 

Methods: In this systematic review and meta-analysis, we performed an extensive literature search in PubMed, Scopus, Web of Science, ProQuest, EMBASE, EBSCOHost, Cochrane, and preprint servers (medRxiv, arXiv, bioRxiv, BioRN, ChiRxiv, ChiRN, and SSRN) and assessed all published articles till September 2022. Primary studies reporting monkeypox infections among asymptomatic participants were included after quality assessment. The characteristics of the study and information on the number of cases and symptomatic status were extracted from the included studies. The heterogeneity between studies was assessed using the I2 statistic. Publication bias was analyzed using funnel plots and Egger regression tests. The primary outcome was the pooled prevalence of asymptomatic infections within the examined population.

 

Results: A total of 16 studies were included for qualitative synthesis, while five studies, including 645 individuals, were included for quantitative synthesis. There was substantial heterogeneity between studies (I2 = 94.86%; p < 0.01), with a pooled percentage of asymptomatic infections in the studied population of 10.2% (95%CI, 2.5–17.9%).

 

Conclusion: This meta-analysis suggests that many people infected with the monkeypox virus are asymptomatic and difficult to detect. Therefore, prompt detection of these cases of monkeypox virus and appropriate subsequent management is of utmost importance to global public health.

Background: Working in the electrical and plumbing sectors is physically demanding, and the incidence of physical injury and work disability is high. This study aimed to assess the mental health and well-being of skilled trades workers working in the electrical and plumbing sectors; (ii)

 

Methods: Forty participants completed an online survey assessing burnout, work-related factors, and mental health issues. Data were analyzed to determine the association between demographics, the availability, and importance of work-related factors, and burnout using a two-sample Mann–Whitney U test; (iii)

 

Results: Our findings showed that among the work-related factors, workplace safety, family commitments, income and benefits, and full-time employment opportunities might be crucial factors to keep study participants working at their current position. Financial support for external training, which was found to be the most important factor in preventing colleague-related burnout, was available to the satisfaction of approximately 50% of the participants; (iv)

 

Conclusion: Work-related factors such as workplace safety and the availability and support for external training may be protective against all types of burnout among this population. Future studies may consider a larger sample size with a more diverse group of participants and perform an intersectional analysis to incorporate minority identities in the analyses.

bottom of page