Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Trust’s ‘big drive’ against pressure ulcers pays off

  • 1 Comment

There has been a big reduction over the past year in the number of patients experiencing hospital acquired pressure ulcers in Ashford and St Peter’s Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

In the last year the trust has exceeded the target set for the reduction in hospital acquire pressure ulcers. It has also made inroads into reducing hospital acquired stage 3 pressure ulcers and has had no hospital acquired stage 4 pressure ulcers.

“Exceeding our set targets, is a real achievement”

Sue Harris

The trust highlighted that it was committed to zero tolerance for hospital-acquired pressure damage and has introduced a number of initiatives to tackle the issue.

Training in pressure area care and pressure ulcer prevention is mandatory for the trust’s clinical staff and there is a Trust Pressure Ulcer Pledge that all staff are asked to sign up to.

There is also a React to RED campaign so if an area of red skin is found over an area of pressure staff are asked to “reposition, escalate and document”.

In addition, to further help with prevention, trust staff are encouraged to use the SSKIN mnemonic:

  • S – Skin and risk assessment. All patients who are at risk of pressure ulcers have a daily skin inspection 
  • S – Surface – The Trust has a selection of appropriate mattresses, cushions, heel protectors and skin pads for those at risk of pressure damage
  • K – Keep moving - patients at risk of pressure damage are assisted to reposition
  • I – Incontinence – management of moisture on the skin using barrier creams and wipes helps prevent tissue breakdown

N – Nutrition - good nutrition and hydration are important in keeping skin healthy to reduce the risk of pressure ulcers that patients are well nourished and hydrated.

Sue Harris, lead nurse tissue viability, said: “We are really pleased with the significant progress the trust has made so far in reducing hospital acquired pressure ulcers.

“Exceeding our set targets, is a real achievement,” she said.

Meanwhile, the trust’s tissue viability team were invited to present their work on reducing pressure ulcers at an event for NHS staff across Kent, Surrey and Sussex in May.

Trust performance, in detail:

Stage 2 Pressure Damage

The trust has an upper limit target for 2015-16 of 22.4 hospital acquired stage 2 pressure ulcers per month. This has been achieved for March 2016. From April 2015 to March 2016 this target has been met, apart from May 2015, every month.

The trust had an upper limit target of 268 hospital acquired stage 2 pressure ulcers and this has been achieved with a total of 216 hospital acquired pressure ulcers for 2015-16.

The target for 2016-17 will be a further 15% reduction and this will be repeated in 2017-18 to align with the agreed 50% reduction over three years.

Stage 3 Pressure Damage

The trust has a target of zero tolerance for hospital acquired unavoidable stage 3 pressure ulcers for 2015-16. The trust had nine hospital acquired stage 3 pressure ulcers affecting seven patients. Of these three were deemed avoidable and four unavoidable.

Stage 4 Pressure Damage

The trust has a target of zero hospital acquired stage 4 pressure ulcers for 2015-16 this has been achieved with no hospital acquired stage 4 pressure ulcers reported

  • 1 Comment

Readers' comments (1)

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.