Disability Management: the application of preventive measures, health promotion and case management in Italy


Background. Disability Management can be defined as a practice to improve workers? health and to reduce the impact and costs of disability. The aim of the study was to estimate the diffusion of DM in Italian companies. Methods. A survey was conducted using a questionnaire, the Worksite Disability Management Audit. The questionnaire was structured into five parts addressing the following domains: 1) characteristics of the company; 2) health promotion activities; 3) preventive measures; 4) case management; 5) disability manage- ment. We selected public and private companies and collected information by direct interview. Results. Twenty companies entered the survey. Twelve Com- panies (60%) indicated that health promotion programs and sensibilisation campaigns are usually carried out. The presence of an individual who provided workplace safety indications and materials was stated by 19 companies (95%). Periodical medical examinations are carried out by 19 companies (95%); 16 (80%) have an evaluation process for ergonomics concerns. Risk assessment and analysis are performed by all companies and the security procedures and policies are updated at least once in a year in 40% of cases. Health status monitoring of injured workers is performed in eight (40%)of the companies, while Disability Management is present as a whole in only three companies. Conclusions. This survey highlights that Disability Management is not undertaken in most companies and that, where applied, there is still confusion and disorganization about ways to pro- mote health and manage workers? illness and disability. Hence, there is still the need to promote an all-inclusive evaluation and management of workers? safety, illness and disabilities.