Adjustment, Identity Transition, and Injury Claims: An Integrative Review and Reconceptualized Framework

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Burnett, Tanis
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A sudden, unexpected, and severe injury resulting in permanent functional limitations can alter a client's life trajectory. The acute and long-term psychological impacts of this type of life-altering event are associated with outcomes such as quality of life (QOL) and general health and well-being. Often negatively impacted is one's ability to continue working in a highly valued and meaningful career, creating the need to find an alternative career that matches residual functional and work capacity. Clients often receive disability benefits that include access to healthcare services as well as financial compensation during work incapacity. Insurance claim involvement adds significant distress and can hinder a client's recovery efforts in a paradoxical manner. Clinical counsellors within Canada lack specialized training in the field of disability rehabilitation. The purpose of this capstone is to conduct an integrative literature review of the individual and practical processes of adjustment during rehabilitation, from initial coping strategies to return-to-work. Results include a synthesis and reconceptualization of the adjustment framework and a proposal of an integrated "Psychosocial Timeline of a Claim." Implications can be used by clinical counsellors and other stakeholders to optimize rehabilitation outcomes in clients with an acquired disability.
psychosocial adjustment , insurance claim , injury , RTW , rehabilitation