Monthly news and research findings from the Institute for Work & Health

IWH News

July 2022

How daily movement patterns are linked to heart health of workers

How much physical activity do Canadian workers actually do in a day, and when? And what patterns of movement are associated with lower risks of cardiovascular disease? An Institute for Work & Health (IWH) study drew on activity tracker data to answer these questions. It found that people who were sedentary—i.e. who did little physical activity throughout the day—had the highest risk of heart disease compared to most other groups. No surprise there. What is surprising, however, was how their heart health risk compared with those who did vigorous, tiring work all day.

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Return-to-work communication: workplace stakeholders share their strategies

Communication is central to disability management, especially in large and complex organizations where communication challenges can be exacerbated by the involvement of multiple parties and inconsistent practices. An IWH research team set out to better understand the strategies used by workplace stakeholders to effectively communicate return-to-work (RTW) issues. Their insights are now summed up in the latest Research Highlights.

Read the Research Highlights

Tracking opioid-related harms among Ontario workers

Between January 2016 and June 2021, more than 20,000 people have died or been hospitalized due to opioid-related poisoning. However, current health surveillance systems that monitor opioid-related harms in Canada do not capture work-related information. A new project by IWH and the Occupational Cancer Research Centre has been launched to monitor opioid-related adverse health events and identify the worker groups most at risk. Learn more about the project and watch for future findings at the project website.

Go to the website

Follow IWH research on the future of work on our new topic page

Heading into the next 15 years, some forecasters anticipate a confluence of system-wide pressures—such as large-scale digitization and automation, demographic shifts and climate change—will have ripple effects across social, political and economic domains. IWH scientists are exploring the emerging issues posed by some of these trends—on health and safety, on work inequities, and on the inclusion of people with disabilities and other potentially marginalized people in the future of work. You’ll find our related projects and findings on our new “Future of work” topic page, one of almost 30 topic pages available.

Go to the topic pages

CARWH 2022 conference is free to all

The Canadian Association for Research in Work and Health (CARWH) is taking place online September 15-16, 2022, with the theme “The Changing World of Work, Health and Research.” This year, attendance will be free to all. Abstract submissions for oral and poster presentations are welcome, and the deadline for submissions is Friday, July 15.

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CRE-MSD hosts webinar on preventing MSDs during team lifts and load drops

Heavy and awkward loads often make it necessary to lift in teams. Masonry is an industry where team lifting takes place under various conditions. In a webinar hosted by the Centre of Research Expertise for the Prevention of Musculoskeletal Disorders (CRE-MSD) on July 19, presenter Dr. Peter Keir discusses musculoskeletal disorder (MSD) prevention when doing team lifts of awkward and heavy loads, or when responding to loads that are dropped by a team member.

Get details and sign up

For more information, please contact

Cindy Moser
Director of Communications
416-927-2027, ext. 2183

Uyen Vu
Senior Communications Associate

IWH News is distributed monthly by the Institute for Work & Health, an independent, not-for-profit organization that conducts and shares research to protect and improve the health and safety of working people.

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