Article Details

Research Database: Article Details

Citation:  Marini, I., Lee, G. K., Chan, F., Chapin, M. H., & Romero, M. G. (2008). Vocational rehabilitation service patterns related to successful competitive employment outcomes of persons with spinal cord injury. Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, 28 (1), 1-13.
Title:  Vocational rehabilitation service patterns related to successful competitive employment outcomes of persons with spinal cord injury
Authors:  Marini, I., Lee, G. K., Chan, F., Chapin, M. H., & Romero, M. G.
Year:  2008
Journal/Publication:  Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation
Publisher:  IOS Press
Full text:    |   PDF   
Peer-reviewed?  Yes
NIDILRR-funded?  Yes
Research design:  Database mining

Structured abstract:

Background:  It is well documented in the literature that the employment rate of people with spinal cored injuries (SCI) decreases drastically after their injuries. Because of the importance of work to the physiological and psychological health and well being of persons with a disability, considerable research efforts have been devoted to studying the employment problems of persons with a spinal cord injury. Over a half of a million individuals are served by state vocational rehabilitation agencies each year, making it possible to study a large number of persons with SCI who are living in the community.
Purpose:  To examine the effect of demographic, work disincentives, and service variables on employment outcomes of persons with spinal cord injury in state vocational rehabilitation agencies.
Setting:  This study included individuals with SCI served by multiple vocational rehabilitation agencies in various settings.
Study sample:  10,901 persons with spinal cord injury whose cases were closed either as employed (54%) or not employed (46%) by state vocational rehabilitation agencies in the fiscal year 2001.
Intervention:  The interventions were the range of Vocational Rehabilitation Services received by the study sample of persons with a Spinal Cord Injury. These services included, but were not limited to, rehabilitation engineering, personal assistance services, assistive technology services, job placement, counseling and guidance, and assessment services.
Data collection and analysis:  An ex post facto design, using data mining as a statistical analysis strategy. Data was taken from the RSA-911 report for all the persons with SCI closed by State Vocational Rehabilitation agencies in 2001. A chi-squared automatic interaction detector (CHAID) based data mining analysis was used to identify the strongest associations between predictors (VR services) and the outcome variable (employment outcomes).
Findings:  The CHAID data mining analysis revealed that job placement services, work disincentives, and case expenditures as the most important predictors of employment outcomes. In addition, physical restoration, substantial counseling, and assistive technology services all led to positive employment outcomes. Importantly, the CHAID analysis segmented the sample into 45 mutually exclusive homogeneous end groups, with a wide range of employment outcomes. The CHAID analysis indicated that demographic variables interacted with rehabilitation services to affect employment outcomes.
Conclusions:  The results confirmed substantial counseling, assistive technology, and job placement and support services are important to the return-to-work success of persons with SCI.

Disabilities served:  Spinal cord injury (SCI)
Populations served:  Gender: Female and Male
Race: American Indian or Alaska Native
Race: Asian
Race: Black / African American
Race: White / Caucasian
Race: Native Hawaiian / other Pacific Islander
Ethnicity: Hispanic or Latino
Interventions:  Assistive technology
Job search and placement assistance
Non-psychological counseling
Personal assistance services (PAS)
Rehabilitation counseling
Vocational assessment
Vocational rehabilitation
Outcomes:  Employment acquisition