February/March 2011 (vol. 07/5)

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Research Plus

Economic benefits of integrated care

A randomised controlled trial of workers off sick with chronic back pain demonstrates substantial economic benefits of an integrated care (IC) approach consisting of workplace-based participatory ergonomics and graded activity1. Trial results published in 20102 showed significant reductions in absence. This economic analysis shows that after 12 months the mean total cost in the IC group – comprising productivity losses (around 90% of the total), direct and non-direct healthcare costs – was £13,165 per worker, significantly lower than the £18,475 per worker with usual care. Every £1 invested in IC returns £26 in benefits to employers, society and the individual.

  1. BMJ 2010; 341: c6414, http://goo.gl/QiysW
  2. BMJ 2010; 340: c1035, http://goo.gl/HUhej


Occupational Health at Work February/March 2011 (vol. 07/5) pp40