A Study of Quality Employment Outcomes Among Individuals with Multiple Sclerosis
James Krause, Ph.D., Professor & Associate Dean for Research in the College of Health Professions, Medical University of South Carolina
Our purpose is to describe our unique study of employment outcomes among people with multiple sclerosis (MS). This study uses a combination of qualitative and quantitative methods. Our first phase of the study used open-ended focus groups to identify themes and patterns among the employment experiences of people with MS and to help us better design a quantitative survey of employment outcomes. We are obtaining completed surveys regarding employment throughout the individuals lives to identify factors that relate to the most successful outcomes. We are using participants who are identified through an MS clinic. The presentation will describe our progress and our findings, along with what those findings mean for people with MS. It will also discuss comparisons with other employment research through the MS society. We will summarize with recommendations for policy-based on the most current findings, considering studies with populations of people with other disabling conditions.
James Krause, Ph.D., is a Professor and Associate Dean for Research in the College of Health Professions (CHP) at MUSC. He is Director of three NIDILRR funded center grants, including the Center on Health Outcomes Research and Capacity Building for Underserved Populations with SCI and TBI, an RRTC on Secondary Conditions in Individuals with SCI, and Successful Employment and Quality Work Life after Severe Disability due to SCI. Dr. Krause has authored 157 articles in peer-reviewed journals (104 as first author). Nearly a quarter of his publications have focused on employment, vocational interests, and socioeconomic outcomes after neurologic injury. He has received several prestigious research awards since 2007, including the American Spinal Injury Association Research Award (2007), which was awarded for a manuscript focused on disparities in earnings after SCI, NARRTC Research Awards (2008, 2011),Patricia McCollom Memorial Research Award from the Foundation for Life Care Planning (2008), the Apple Award from the American Spinal Injury Association (2009), and the American Rehabilitation Counseling Association Research Award (2010), which was conferred for a manuscript examining the effects of pre- and post-injury education on obtaining employment. Dr. Krause, who has tetraplegia of 40 years, was inducted into the SCI Hall of Fame by the National SCI Association in 2008 and received the National Medtronic Courage Award in 2011, the first time it has been awarded to someone in biomedical or rehabilitation research (previous awardees include Sen. Bob Dole, Sen. Max Cleland, Christopher Reeves, Stephen Hawking, Ed Roberts, and Judith Heumann). Most recently, he received the Distinguished Service Award from NARRTC, an award previously made to Sen. Tom Harkin and Sen. Bob Dole. Dr. Krause and the research team are particularly proud of these last two awards as they represent external acknowledgment of the importance of our work to the lives of people with disabling conditions.