Time trend analysis of return to work after stroke in Denmark 1996-2006

Harald Hannerz, Ole S. Mortensen, Otto M. Poulsen, Frank Humle, Betina Holbaek Pedersen, Lars L. Andersen

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    Background: In the period 1997-2005, the Danish government initiated a series of legislative changes aimed at facilitating RTW (return to work) in the Danish population. In the present study, we investigated the odds of being gainfully occupied ca. two years after stroke as a function of onset calendar year, 1996-2006. Methods: All previously employed 20-57 year-old stroke patients in Denmark 1996-2006 (N = 19985) were followed prospectively through national registers. The analysis was controlled for the type of stroke and a series of demographic, structural and occupational variables. Results: The odds for RTW increased significantly during the study period (P < 0.0001). The odds at the end of the period were more than twice as high as they were at the beginning, even after post hoc control for improved survival and decreased unemployment rates. The most conspicuous increase coincided with a change in the sickness benefit act that took place in 2005. Conclusion: The study provides quite strong circumstantial evidence that the legislative changes had an effect on the odds of return to work after stroke. More direct evidence is desirable, but such can only be obtained through a randomized controlled study.

    Sider (fra-til)200-204
    Antal sider5
    TidsskriftInternational Journal of Occupational Medicine and Environmental Health
    Udgave nummer2
    StatusUdgivet - jun. 2012

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