About

 A message from our Center Director:

The Oregon Healthy Workforce Center (OHWC) was funded in September 2011 as a NIOSH Total Worker Health Center of Excellence. OHWC faculty and staff come from various backgrounds and expertise in occupational health psychology, industrial organizational psychology, industrial hygiene, physiology, public health, communications, and engineering. Read more about our Center directors, research projects, and about our affiliates below.

Our mission

The mission of the Oregon Healthy Workforce Center is to improve the well-being of workers through Total Worker Health research, dissemination, outreach, and, education. 

Specifically, we design, develop, and evaluate the effectiveness of integrated programs that jointly address work-specific factors such as hazard reduction and work redesign along with employee-specific issues like chronic illness prevention and health improvement. We put our mission into action through: 

  • Effectiveness research 
  • Dissemination of evidence-based programs
  • Active interdisciplinary collaboration with partner organizations on research, outreach, and education

Approach

We're improving the health, safety, and well-being of workers through effectiveness research, collaboration with partner organizations, and dissemination of evidence-based programs. Learn more about our current and past projects.

Each research project:

  • Integrates health protection (i.e., occupational safety and health) and employee well-being (health promotion)
  • Utilizes a randomized controlled design, considered the gold standard for research 
  • Produces self-guided, scalable products for adoption within organizations
  • Contributes data to a common measures database for cross-project data analysis

Research projects:

Given our commitment to action-oriented research, all of OHWC's projects are interventions focused on improving occupational safety, health, and employee well-being. Each intervention is designed to include proven and novel methods for positive change, and tested with a diverse set of workers across Oregon. 

  • Our previous studies helped address the needs of home health care workers, public workers (Water Bureau and Department of Transportation, Parks and Recreation), construction workers, corrections officers, young workers, and Latino/non-Latino supervisors.
  • Projects in our current cycle tackle the Total Worker Health of call center workers and truck drivers.
Flow chart that displays the Oregon Healthy Workforce Centers' logic model of the content above listed under the Logic Model accordion.
Flow chart of the Oregon Healthy Workforce Centers' logic model.

Inputs

  • Research expertise in organization and employee level safety & well-being
  • Effective TWH interventions
  • Expert guidance in academia & industry (Internal Steering Committee + External Advisory Committee)
  • Oregon Institute of Occupational Health Sciences support (financial + outreach resources)
  • Community partners (through research and outreach)

Activities

  • TWH Intervention research with multiple workgroups (needs assessment, work environment hazard reduction, in-person & online training, integrated safety and well-being interventions)
  • TWH student scholar projects and dissertator support (through Intervention Incubator, Dissemination Engine & Education Launcher initiatives)
  • Community education (Summer Institute)
  • Conference attendance and event sponsorship
  • Stakeholder events (e.g. Partners' Luncheon, Science-Industry Meet-ups, Dissemination Forums)
  • Program Planning & Evaluation 

Outputs

  • Publications and conference presentations
  • Evidence-based tools, toolkits, and training materials 
  • TWH Common Measures repository with cross-population data and analysis
  • New and versatile intervention tactics & strategies applicable across varied settings 
  • Increased collaborative opportunity between TWH researchers, practitioners, and  industry partners

Outcomes

Short-term

  • Improved safety & health knowledge and behaviors
  • Enhanced co-worker, supervisor and organizational support
  • Standardized TWH metrics
  • Filling gap in TWH literature 
  • Expanded TWH research expertise and industry knowledge base
  • Growing avenues for dissemination 
  • Regional TWH impact

Long-term

  • Improved worker safety & well-being
  • Improved workplace policy change
  • Lower healthcare & workers' compensation costs, positive ROI
  • Sustainable science-industry partnership and shared goal pursuit
  • Research-to-practice translation 
  • Communities of practice in TWH

External Factors

  • Federal resources
  • Stakeholder priorities & interests