Within ten years of diagnosis, half of employed people with inflammatory arthritis (IA) have to stop working. However, many employed people with arthritis don’t get advice on what can be done to help them stay in work. We are testing a work rehabilitation programme (the WORKWELL programme) for employed people with Inflammatory Arthritis who are having problems at work due to arthritis.
WORKWELL includes a work assessment, identifying priority work problems, recommending work solutions, job modifications and giving advice and training on self-management at work. A work site visit may be conducted to see the person working and meet with their employer/ line manager to discuss any changes to their work to make it easier.
We want to see if WORKWELL reduces employed people with Inflammatory Arthritis problems at work, their risk of losing their job and if it is cost-effective. We are asking employed people with Inflammatory Arthritis attending Rheumatology out-patient or Therapy clinics at 18 sites across the country to take part. Participants will get written work self-help information. Half will also get individualized advice and support (for about 4.5 hours spread over 3 to 4 months) from a WORKWELL-trained therapist to help resolve their work issues. Participants complete study questionnaires (in their own time) when they: start in the trial, 6 and 12 months later.