Original Research

Cognitive-behavioural therapy effects on employment-related outcomes for individuals with mental illness: A systematic review

Kim Minjoo, Elias Mpofu, Kaye Brock, Michael Millington, James Athanasou
SA Journal of Industrial Psychology | Vol 40, No 2 | a1188 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajip.v40i2.1188 | © 2014 Kim Minjoo, Elias Mpofu, Kaye Brock, Michael Millington, James Athanasou | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 10 December 2013 | Published: 06 June 2014

About the author(s)

Kim Minjoo, Discipline of Rehabilitation Counselling, University of Sydney, Australia
Elias Mpofu, Discipline of Rehabilitation Counselling, University of Sydney, Australia
Kaye Brock, Discipline of Rehabilitation Counselling, University of Sydney, Australia
Michael Millington, Discipline of Rehabilitation Counselling, University of Sydney, Australia
James Athanasou, Discipline of Rehabilitation Counselling, University of Sydney, Australia


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Abstract

Orientation: To identify the effects of interventions in cognitive-behaviour therapy (CBT) on employment-related outcomes world-wide for individuals with mental illness.

Research purpose: A search of the relevant literature was conducted through PsychInfo, Medline, Scopus and Google Scholar™, covering the period between 1995 and August 2011. The methodological quality of included studies was assessed using the criteria from Evidence Based Library and Information Practice (EBLIP). Eleven studies met the inclusion criteria.

Motivation for the study: Evidence is needed on best practices to support work participation by people with mental illness. Effective cognitive-behavioural intervention might enhance their personal control over participation in employment aside from systemic or policy-oriented interventions.

Research approach, design and method: A scoping review was done to map trends in the evidence for CBT as an intervention to support employment participation by people with mental illness. A scoping review is exploratory, the evidence of which lays the basis for subsequent studies. The methodological quality of included studies was assessed using the EBLIP Critical Appraisal Checklist.

Main findings: Cognitive-behaviour therapy was an effective intervention approach for better work productivity, longer work hours, higher re-employment rate and enhanced mental health for individuals with mental illness.

Practical/managerial implications: Cognitive-behaviour therapy is a promising strategy for industrial and organisational psychologists dealing with people who have a mental illness. It enhances employment and maintains work adjustment. Additional clinical trials in diverse populations and contexts will further establish its efficacy.

Contribution/value-add: This scoping review aggregated the preliminary evidence for the efficacy of cognitive-behaviour therapy as a work-participation intervention for people with mental illness.


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