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At the Sources of One's Well-Being: Early Rehabilitation for Employees With Symptoms of Distress

Kuoppala, Jaana MD, PhD; Kekoni, Jouni PhD

Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine: July 2013 - Volume 55 - Issue 7 - p 817–823
doi: 10.1097/JOM.0b013e31828dc930
Original Articles

Objective: To examine the effects of a new multifaceted early rehabilitation program on employee well-being targeted on distressed employees in small-to-medium sized workplaces.

Methods: Fifty-two employees (92% women; age: 34 to 66 years) participated in five biweekly sessions with one follow-up day at 6 months. Rehabilitation professionals specially trained for the mindfulness method covered topics from health, nutrition, sleep, physical activity to stress management. Employees were divided by their well-being level at baseline into “healthy” and “symptomatic” groups. Main outcomes were job, mental, and physical well-being.

Results: Well-being among the symptomatic employees reached that of the healthy ones at baseline. Also, the healthy participants benefited from the program to a small degree.

Conclusions: The preliminary findings of this new program are promising although more research is needed on its effects and cost-effectiveness.

From the Rehabilitation Foundation (Dr Kuoppala), Helsinki, Finland; and Avire Oy (Dr Kekoni), Helsinki, Finland.

Address correspondence to: Jaana Kuoppala, MD, PhD, Rehabilitation Foundation, P.O. Box 39, 00411 Helsinki, Finland (jaana.kuoppala@helsinki.fi).

This work was financed by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health and the European Social Fund.

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Copyright © 2013 by the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine