Article Details

Research Database: Article Details

Citation:  Hilton, Gillean; Unsworth, Carolyn A.; Stuckey, Ruth; Murphy, Gregory C. (2018). The experience of seeking, gaining and maintaining employment after traumatic spinal cord injury and the vocational pathways involved. Work, 59 (1), 67-84.
Title:  The experience of seeking, gaining and maintaining employment after traumatic spinal cord injury and the vocational pathways involved
Authors:  Hilton, Gillean; Unsworth, Carolyn A.; Stuckey, Ruth; Murphy, Gregory C.
Year:  2018
Journal/Publication:  Work
Publisher:  IOS Press
DOI:  https://doi.org/10.3233/WOR-172660
Full text:  https://content.iospress.com/articles/work/wor2660?resultNumber=1&t...   
Peer-reviewed?  Yes
NIDILRR-funded?  Yes

Structured abstract:

Background:  Rates of employment sustainability are lower for people with spinal cord injuries compared to the labor force participation of the general population and the employment rates of people prior to their injuries.
Purpose:  The purpose of this study is to understand the experience and route of people gaining employment after a traumatic spinal cord injury classifying them into outcome groups of stable, unstable and without employment. The purpose is also to identify before and after route for the participants in each group and to explore the experiences of the people looking for, gaining and maintaining employment.
Data collection and analysis:  Thirty-one participants were interviewed with a mixed methods approach including interpretive phenomenological analysis and vocational pathway mapping of quantitative data.
Findings:  The most common pathway identified was from study and work pre-injury to stable employment post-injury. Four super-ordinate themes were identified from the interpretive phenomenological analysis; expectations of work, system impacts, worker identity and social supports. Implications for clinical practice include fostering cultural change, strategies for system navigation, promotion of worker identity and optimal use of social supports.
Conclusions:  The results of the study helps boost the observation and understanding of the complex post-spinal cord injury experience of employment, yielding an opportunity for future experimental research, policy development and education in regards to the experience of returning to work and the factors that affect the route chosen.

Disabilities served:  Spinal cord injury (SCI)
Interventions:  Vocational assessment
Other