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Articles   |    
Workplace Antistigma Initiatives: A Scoping Study
Cindy Malachowski, M.Sc. (R.S.); Bonnie Kirsh, Ph.D.
Psychiatric Services 2013; doi: 10.1176/appi.ps.201200409
View Author and Article Information

The authors are affiliated with the Graduate Department of Rehabilitation Science, University of Toronto, 500 University Ave., Toronto, Ontario M5G 1V7, Canada (e-mail: cindy.malachowski@utoronto.ca).

Copyright © 2013 by the American Psychiatric Association

Abstract

Objective  The purpose of this scoping study was to identify and describe the principles and characteristics embedded in workplace mental health antistigma initiatives. Research in this area is diffuse and not well synthesized. Therefore, a scoping study is useful in generating a breadth of coverage and identifying all relevant literature on the topic regardless of study design. Results will inform evaluation strategies and can be used to distinguish the effectiveness of particular elements in future research.

Methods  The “York Framework,” a five-stage methodological design (with an optional sixth stage) was used as the structure for this study. Eleven peer-reviewed and gray-literature databases were searched (2000–2011), and an extensive Internet review was also conducted. Two reviewers independently reviewed all abstracts to determine study selection. A data chart consisting of key issues and themes was utilized to extract data from the included studies. Preliminary results were used to inform a stakeholder consultation with seven international experts.

Results  Twenty-two antistigma interventions were included in the study. Most of the initiatives have appeared in the past four years and across geographic boundaries, reflecting the growing international interest in mental health in the workplace. A large proportion of the interventions utilize educational approaches to reducing stigma, and a substantial number target military personnel.

Conclusions  Stronger evidence for effective practices needs to be established through the use of standardized workplace-specific interventions, reliable and valid evaluation tools, and overall enhanced scientific rigor.

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Table 1Characteristics of workplace antistigma interventions reviewed in the scoping study
Table Footer Note

a PTSD, posttraumatic stress disorder

Table Footer Note

b Knifton et al. (27) and Quinn et al. (24) appear to have used the same intervention; however, both studies provided distinctly different perspectives. Only one account of the intervention was utilized for comparison purposes.

Table Footer Note

c SAMHSA, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

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