Prevention of Pressure Ulcers

409 Words2 Pages
Summary #1 Quality Improvement Strategies to Prevent Pressure Ulcers The development of pressure ulcers among patients have been raising dramatically increasing costs and length of stay. Hospitalization for a patient admitted for pressure ulcer treatment costs approx. $37,800, ranging from 2.2-3.6 billion annually for pressure ulcer treatment. Development of pressure ulcers puts the patient at risk for infection and causes stress on the immune system. Number of patients admitted for pressure ulcers cannot be controlled but hospital-acquired pressure ulcers can. The National Quality Forum (NQF) a non-profit organization with the support from CMS (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services) have developed a list with serious and costly healthcare errors called “never events.” These errors which include stage III and stage IV pressure ulcers may cause serious injury or death to the patient and result in increased cost. The Joint Commission has implemented National Patient Safety goals to monitor specific interventions and outcomes. The regular use of a validated risk assessment tool to identify high risk patients in order to prevent injury is an example of a safety goal. The Joint Commission also tracks information on “sentinel events which result in unanticipated death or permanent loss of function.” These sentinel events refer to loss of function due to pressure ulcers. With good assessment and intervention protocols most pressure ulcers for at risk patients may be prevented. Only then can quality begin to improve. Patient outcomes are essential to licensure, accreditation and reimbursement. Healthcare plans are beginning to offer financial incentives for quality patient care referred to as pay-for performance programs. The national Pressure Ulcer Advisory panel recommends to conduct regular prevalence and incidence surveys to gather data on facility-acquired
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