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Dr. Mieke Koehoorn gives Alf Nachemson Memorial Lecture

Nov 14, 2013 |

SPPH’s Dr. Mieke Koehoorn was the speaker for the Institute for Work & Health’s annual Alf Nachemson Memorial Lecture. This prestigious lectureship is awarded to those who have made a substantial contribution to the field of occupational health related to the causes or management of musculoskeletal pain, the prevention of work-related injury, emerging challenges in the interface between work and health, and the role of evidence in policy-making. This lecture took place in Toronto, Ontario, on November 21, 2013.

Dr. Koehoorn discussed the impact of research on regulatory and compensation policy for worker health in British Columbia.


Dr. Mieke Koehoorn

“I am honoured to deliver the Alf Nachemson Memorial Lecture this year at the request of the Institute for Work & Health. Dr. Nachemson made significant contributions to the use of research evidence in decision making, and this lecture provides an extraordinary opportunity to communicate the work of our SPPH research team to a large audience of stakeholders and decision-makers in the field of work and health,” said Koehoorn, co-lead for UBC’s for Partnership for Work, Health & Safety (PWHS)

Her presentation had three main areas of focus: first, illustrating how research has influenced policy through PWHS, a unique partnership between the UBC and WorkSafeBC. Second, illustrating the use of large, administrative health databases to answer policy-relevant research questions for decision makers, including Population Data BC as a data resource for Canadian researchers; and finally, recognizing the contributions of Dr. Clyde Hertzman, who passed away earlier this year, as a mentor and principal architect of the Partnership and of Population Data BC.

Dr. Mieke Koehoorn specializes in current and emerging issues in occupational health, with a special interest in the surveillance of occupational injury and disease, the epidemiology of injury, and the evaluation of workers’ compensation policies. In February 2013, Dr. Koehoorn was named CIHR Chair in Gender, Work and Health. Her work focuses on gender and sex differences in workers’ compensation, work injury and illness rates, and work disability outcomes. She is also an adjunct scientist with Institute for Work & Health.

The Alf Nachemson Lecture was created by the Institute for Work & Health in 2002 to commemorate Dr. Nachemson’s extensive contributions to the use of research evidence in clinical decision-making. After his passing in 2006, it was renamed to the Alf Nachemson Memorial Lecture. Nachemson was a renowned orthopaedic surgeon, researcher, and founding member of the Institute for Work & Health’s Scientific Advisory Committee.

By Rachael Nakamura