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Seeking Compensation for Mesothelioma: Investigating why Individuals Do or Do Not Seek Workers’ Compensation Benefits in British Columbia

This study was an investigation into why individuals with mesothelioma do or do not seek compensation, by interviewing both individuals with mesothelioma and physicians. The research was aimed at providing suggestions for best practices in informing individuals and their families, worker representatives/organizations, physicians, and employers about seeking compensation for mesothelioma, as well as for other occupational diseases

Despite efforts made to inform people of the link between work-related asbestos exposure and development of mesothelioma, research has shown that only about 50% of patients with a diagnosis of mesothelioma file claims for compensation in B.C. and other jurisdictions

The study's findings suggest a need for increasing awareness of the importance of the role of the physician in recognizing occupational exposures and related disease, and in supporting patients and families in seeking compensation

The researchers suggest implementing policies and practices where a mesothelioma diagnosis would automatically trigger contact with the workers' compensation system, and would not be dependent on physicians encouraging patient contact with the system or submitting a form

Principal Applicant: Mieke Koehoorn (UBC)
Co-applicants: Georgia Pomaki, Chris McLeod, Paul Demers, Christie Hurrell (UBC); Christopher Lee (BCCA)
Funding Awarded: $50,000 (Innovation)

Competition Year: 2010 File type: PDF (489 KB) Asset type: Research Research: RS2010-IG32