The PGAP is considered one of the most empirically supported interventions for targeting psychosocial risk-factors for disability. This training workshop is designed to equip Occupational Therapists and other rehabilitation professionals with skills in psychosocial intervention strategies such that they may be better able to assist their clients in overcoming the challenges associated with debilitating health/mental health conditions. To date, clinical trials have supported the effectiveness of the PGAP for reducing disability and promoting return to work in individuals who have sustained work injuries, individuals with whiplash injuries, individuals with fibromyalgia, and individuals with mental health conditions such as depression and PTSD.
The demand for the PGAP has increased dramatically over the past few years and is considered a preferred service by many injury and disability insurers in North America. The PGAP has been included in the 18th edition of the Official Disability Guidelines (Work Loss Data Institute, 2013) as an evidence-based approach to the management of disability.
The PGAP would be considered a CBT intervention, with a primary focus on behaviour change. One of the advantages of the PGAP is that it can be offered by clinicians from a variety of rehabilitation disciplines, such as occupational therapy, physical therapy, kinesiology, vocational rehabilitation, nursing, social work and psychology. Traditionally, CBT interventions have been provided primarily by clinicians with a background in mental health. The wider range of disciplines able to provide the PGAP greatly increases the accessibility of the program. The standardization of the PGAP is an additional strength. The PGAP is standardized such that all PGAP providers follow a specific set of intervention guidelines designed to have the greatest impact on reducing the client’s psychosocial risk profile. In the PGAP, CBT techniques have been adapted such that ‘disability reduction’ is the central objective of treatment as opposed to symptom management. Finally, the evidence base speaks clearly in favour of the PGAP, particularly as it pertains to return-to-work outcomes. In all clinical trials of the PGAP, return to work has been the primary outcome variable. A list of scientific publications supporting the use of the PGAP as a return-to-work intervention can be accessed through the www.PGAPworks.com website.