Central West Health & Rehabilitation
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Rationale for using an intermediary to assist small businesses with Injury Management Systems Jun 22nd, 2014
It is generally accepted that small enterprises with less than 50 employees have higher exposure to occupational hazards than larger organisations. Small enterprises often have limited resources to prioritise these risks and to improve the working environment, and they often have difficulties in complying with legislation. Small enterprises constitute a major challenge for the society’s effort to improve occupational injury management as they, on one hand, have extensive needs, and on the other hand, are difficult to reach. Just one worksite injury could produce serious economic consequences to a unprepared small business.

Central West Health and Rehabilitation work specifically with small enterprises as a trusted intermediary to assist with injury management processes.

Hasle and Limborg have developed a model for reaching out to small enterprises with intervention programmes. The model emphasises the need for inclusion of not only the concrete changes of the working environment but also the process in which small enterprises are approached and motivated to start a change process.



The model can be used to construct a stepwise procedure for the design of working environment programmes. The idea is to start from the right side of the model and subsequently work backwards through the chain in order to end up with a full designed programme. The design procedure therefore has five steps:

  1. Defining the OHS challenges of the target group (health outcome).

  2. Selecting methods and solutions that can improve the working environment by reducing the exposure and thereby producing the intended health outcome (improvement of the working environment).

  3. Developing theories about mechanisms which can motivate the target group to initiate change. On the general level, there are three main mechanisms: regulation, incentives, and information (change process).

  4. Analysing how the specific context of the target group may influence motivation and implementation of the intervention (context).

  5. Designing the programme which builds on the results of the four preceding steps (programme).

This method has been used in the development of a practical intervention programme aimed at small construction enterprises. The transparency opens the possibility for critical discussions and thereby improvements of both design criteria and design conclusions.

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