Return to Work After Severe Traumatic Brain Injury in Diverse Labour Market and Welfare State Contexts
This chapter reviews the rates and predictors of return to work (RTW) after severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) in Denmark, and compares RTW rates across numerous countries. While differences can be attributed to a multitude of methodological differences, including how RTW is defined and the type of data available, we argue that countries can be roughly categorized in terms of RTW performance. The comparative assessment discusses studies from Northern European countries representing social democratic (Denmark and Norway) and conservative-corporatist models (France and the Netherlands), as well as available data from a liberal welfare state overseas (USA). Complementing studies from these Global North countries, a study from Brazil is also included. The analysis reveals that RTW is lower in Denmark and Norway compared to other countries. One plausible explanation is that the welfare state institutional setting partly exempts employers from responsibilities towards job seekers with disabilities. We address the RTW challenges for severe TBI survivors in the context of inappropriate work opportunities and an increasing requirement for highly skilled workers in the labour market. Finally, we propose potential strategies for Nordic countries to improve RTW outcomes after severe TBI.
This chapter reproduces, in part, material published in Odgaard, Johnsen, Pedersen, and Nielsen (2017a), Odgaard, Johnsen, Stubbs, et al. (2017b), and Odgaard, Pedersen, et al. (2018). As such, we acknowledge our earlier co-authors and thank them for their contributions to this work.
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