Abstract

This thesis addresses the work participation of young adults with physical disabilities caused by a chronic condition. With increasing numbers of young people with a chronic physical condition living into adulthood, knowledge about the development of work participation in these young adults and the support they need to achieve suitable employment is needed. Interventions to improve the work participation of young adults with physical disabilities were lacking. The main objective of this thesis was to design and evaluate a vocational rehabilitation intervention to improve the work participation of young adults with physical disabilities. In order to design and evaluate the intervention, we first performed a systematic review of the literature aiming to evaluate what evidence was available regarding effective interventions to improve work participation of persons with a chronic physical condition. Then we performed a longitudinal cohort study to document the development of work participation in young adults with cerebral palsy from age 16-20 up to age 20-24 years. In addition, we studied if the modified Dutch-language version of the work limitations questionnaire was an intelligible, reliable and valid instrument to assess work limitations among working persons with a chronic condition in the Netherlands. Based on those studies we designed, implemented and evaluated a new intervention aiming to improve the work participation of young adults with physical disabilities. The intervention integrated multidisciplinary rehabilitation and job coaching and combined a group program with individual coaching. Twelve young adults participated in the pilot study. The intervention was implemented in an outpatient clinic for young adults of Erasmus MC and Rijndam Rehabilitation in Rotterdam and cost were reasonable (€3130,- per person for 1 year). After one year, 8 out of 12 young adults achieved paid (n=4) or unpaid (n=4) employment. Employed persons showed moderate work ability, moderate work limitations and improved occupational performance in work, as well as self-care and leisure. After 3 years eight persons were in employed, seven of which in paid employment. Conclusion of this thesis is that it is feasible to combine multidisciplinary rehabilitation and job coaching in an intervention to improve the work participation of young adults with physical disabilities. The broad integrated approach of the intervention seems successful to support them in finding suitable employment.

Additional Metadata
Keywords Work participation, Young Adults, Rehabilitation
Promotor H.J. Stam (Henk)
Publisher Erasmus University Rotterdam
Sponsor The research described in this thesis was supported by Stimuleringsregeling Promoveren in het hbo (grant nr. PR 0509-B). The studies for this thesis were performed at the Research Centre Innovations in Care of Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences and the Department of Rehabilitation Medicine of Erasmus University Medical Center, in collaboration with the Transition Research Group of Erasmus University Medical Center and Rijndam Rehabilitation Centre, Rotterdam. Financial support for the publication of this thesis was provided by the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences.
ISBN 978-94-6169-675-5
Persistent URL hdl.handle.net/1765/78232
Citation
Verhoef, J.A.C. (2015, June 9). Improving Work Participation of Young Adults with Physical Disabilities. Erasmus University Rotterdam. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1765/78232