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Case study: Working under a time crunch in a short-stay facility

short stay facility

By Janet Wolfson, PT, CWS, CLT-LANA

After landing my dream job as the wound care coordinator at an inpatient rehabilitation facility (IRF), I found myself trying to determine how much healing could be achieved for our more challenging patients, given the constraints of reimbursement and what can be done in the typical 10 to 14 days of a patient stay.

Here’s an example of how I worked with our team to help one of these challenging patients. (more…)

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Get the ‘SKINNI’ on reducing pressure ulcers

By Cindy Barefield, BSN, RN-BC, CWOCN

Like many hospitals, Houston Methodist San Jacinto Hospital uses national benchmarks such as the National Database of Nursing Quality Indicators (NDNQI®) to measure quality outcomes. Based on benchmark reports that showed an increased trend of pressure ulcers in critically ill patients in our hospital, the clinical nurses in our Critical Care Shared Governance Unit-Based Council (CCSGUBC) identified an improvement opportunity. (more…)

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If pressure ulcers were apples: A fun inservice program

 By Karen Culp, RN, WCC

I’m one of the nurses responsible for the pressure ulcer prevention education program at the 150-bed skilled nursing facility where I work. We try to keep education sessions simple, fun, and interactive. One day, our administrator asked us to develop a crossword puzzle and “minute to win it” education game that would be appropriate for all staff—registered nurses, licensed practical nurses, certified nursing assistants, and staff from administration, the business office, scheduling, maintenance, dietary, and housekeeping. (more…)

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Evolution of the deep tissue injury or a declining pressure ulcer?

 By Jeri Lundgren, BSN, RN, PHN, CWS, CWCN

A declining pressure ulcer decreases the quality of life for patients and places providers at risk for regulatory citations and litigation. But it’s important for clinicians to determine whether the first appearance of skin injury is truly a stage I or II pressure ulcer or if it’s a deep tissue injury (DTI), a unique staging category for a pressure ulcer. Otherwise, a clinician might think a pressure ulcer is getting worse instead of the change being the normal progression of a pressure ulcer that is presenting as a DTI. (more…)

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Communicating to caregivers: Cornerstone of care

By Jeri Lundgren, BSN, RN, PHN, CWS, CWCN

The challenge of preventing pressure ulcers is won through our frontline staff—the patient’s caregivers. Caregivers deliver most of the pressure ulcer preventive interventions, such as turning and repositioning, floating the heels, and managing incontinence. That’s why it’s imperative to communicate the patient’s plan of care directly to the caregivers. (more…)

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What does it mean to participate in a wound care clinical trial?

By Susan Beard, RN, BS, CWOCN

Suppose you’re reading an article on a new product that states the product has been through a series of clinical trials before marketing. What does this mean? Who was involved? As a clinician, could you initiate or be involved in a clinical trial of a new product? Who are clinical trial subjects, and what’s it like for them to be involved in a clinical study?

A clinical trial starts as an idea. As clinicians, we often use our critical-thinking skills to imagine a product or method of practice we think could be created or improved on to better meet our patients’ needs. The idea begins to grow and a series of events begins. (more…)

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Translating the language of health care

By Catherine E. Chung, PhD, RN, CNE, WCC

As a wound care clinician, you teach patients about medications, wound treatments, the plan of care, symptoms of complications, wound physiology—you teach a lot. And most patients probably smile and nod when you ask, “Do you understand?” However, health literacy research has shown that only 12% of the U.S. population is fluent in the language of health care. As health care has become increasingly complex, it has become increasingly difficult for patients to understand. Fortunately for your patient, you can translate. (more…)

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Developing a successful program for wound care in the home

By Stanley A. Rynkiewicz III, MSN, RN, WCC, DWC, CCS

Developing a successful wound care program requires a strong commitment and a willingness to learn. Our experience with creating such a program at Deer Meadows Home Health and Support Services, LLC (DMHHSS), a nonprofit home-care facility in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, may help others build a similar wound care program and reap the rewards of a more confident staff as well as improved patient outcomes. (more…)

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An easy tool for tracking pressure ulcer data

pressure ulcer tracking tool

By David L. Johnson, NHA, RAC-CT

As a senior quality improvement specialist with IPRO, the Quality Improvement Organization for New York State over the past 11 years, I’ve been tasked with helping skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) embrace the process of continuous quality improvement. A necessary component of this effort has been to collect, understand, and analyze timely and accurate data. This article discusses a free tool I developed to help SNFs track their data related to pressure ulcers and focus their quality improvement efforts for the greatest impact. (more…)

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Building an effective pressure ulcer prevention program

By Jeri Lundgren, BSN, RN, PHN, CWS, CWCN

As a wound care nurse, do you feel the weight of the world on your shoulders when trying to implement a pressure ulcer prevention program? Many staff members think it’s up to the wound care nurse alone to implement the program. However, a successful program requires involvement from all staff and is a 24/7 endeavor. Here’s how to do it. (more…)

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Best of the best, the sequel

By Donna Sardina, RN, MHA, WCC, CWCMS, DWC, OMS

Welcome to our second annual “Best of the Best” issue of Wound Care Advisor, the official journal of the National Alliance of Wound Care and Ostomy (NAWCO). This may be the first time you have held Wound Care Advisor in your hands because normally we come to you via the Internet. Using a digital format for this peer-reviewed journal allows us to bring you practical information that you can access anytime, anywhere and gives you the ability to access videos and other links to valuable resources for you and your patients. (more…)

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