For the past 25 years, Net Health has helped thousands of hospitals and scores of clinicians find better ways to treat and manage patients with pressure injuries. That’s one reason we want to take special note of World-Wide Pressure Injury Day. Founded in 2013 by the National Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel (NPUAP), it’s a day that focuses on learning, sharing, and education.
There’s a growing need to spotlight pressure injuries. Despite medical facilities’ best efforts, pressure injuries (PIs) are on the rise. The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) has estimated that 2.5 million hospital patients develop a PI each year, and 60,000 die as a direct result of their wounds.1 Check out our recent blog, Kickstarting a Pressure Injury Prevention Program, for more information.
The troubling data doesn’t stop there. PIs cost the nation close to $27 billion a year2; expenditures have doubled in recent years due to an aging population and poor management of diseases like diabetes. The government is trying to address the issue through several initiatives, including penalties for hospital-acquired pressure injuries (HAPI) and readmissions. Over the past few years, Medicare has reduced payments by millions of dollars to 1 in 4 hospitals because of PIs.3
Our infographic, Pressure Injuries: Serious Consequences, Substantial Costs, Real Solution, has more data on the topic.
PIs – A Concern for All Clinicians
For these reasons and others, PIs shouldn’t just be a concern to wound care nurses. And those of us involved in wound care should encourage our colleagues to think of it more than just once a year. It’s a condition that virtually any clinician needs to recognize and find ways to address daily. For example, dieticians are an essential part of the anti-pressure injury team to improve nutrition and ensure patients get the vitamins and other nutrients needed to heal.
Residents and physicians need to be aware of causes, symptoms, treatments, and prevention to be active leaders of the team. Likewise, leadership and the C-suite at hospitals, nursing homes, and long-term care facilities need to fully understand the condition and its impact on penalties, quality ratings, and outcomes so they can become involved in championing the people, products, and technologies that can help to prevent and reduce PIs.
Net Health’s Commitment to Fighting PIs
Together Net Health® Wound Care EHR and Tissue Analytics’ mobile 2D and 3D imaging platform provides a powerful tool to combat PIs. More than 20,000 clinicians rely on our technology and services to document more than one million wounds a year.
Our EHR platform provides workflow management, coding, and other services to help busy clinicians manage the process of caring for PI patients. Tissue Analytics’ next-generation wound care technology helps reduce the subjectivity in wound assessments, enabling clinicians to easily capture wound images, measurements, and other relevant documentation from their mobile devices.
While World-Wide Pressure Injury Day is just once a year, we are committed to helping our clients and industry treat and prevent PIs every day.
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Top 5 Digital Techniques to Reduce Hospital-Acquired Pressure Injuries
1Are we ready for this change?” Content last reviewed October 2014. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD.
2Sen CK, Gordillo GM, Roy S, et al. Human skin wounds: a major and snowballing threat to public health and the economy. Wound Repair Regen, Vol. 17(6), Nov.-Dec., 2009.
3Padula, William V. and Delarmente, Benjo A., “The national cost of hospital-acquired pressure injuries in the United States,” International Wound Journal, Jan. 28, 2019.