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Program Reduces Pressure Ulcers By 70 Percent

Fri, 02/18/2011 - 4:05am

Healthcare facilities throughout the country are reporting, on average, a 70 percent reduction in facility-acquired pressure ulcers after implementing Medline Industries' Pressure Ulcer Prevention Program (PUPP). These same facilities are potentially saving up to $306,000 per year (based on having 7.1 fewer pressure ulcers at an average treatment of $43,180 per pressure ulcer, according to CMS1). To date, more than 669 healthcare facilities are utilizing the prevention-focused program.

"The targeted education provides healthcare facilities with the tools that have been identified by leading experts to help reduce the incidence of facility-acquired pressure ulcers," said Alecia Cooper, senior vice president of clinical services. "When the education is combined with evidence-based products and hands-on program management and tracking, most facilities see a significant decrease in the incidence of their pressure ulcers and an increase in patient satisfaction."

One of the hospitals using Medline's Pressure Ulcer Prevention Program is Jennie Edmundson Memorial Hospital, a 225-bed facility in Council Bluffs, Iowa. In January 2009 the hospital had a nine percent incidence rate in its ICU and medical/surgical and telemetry units. Following a 90-day trial using the PUPP program, Jennie Edmundson eliminated pressure ulcers and continues to consistently report no new pressure ulcers. "Our results were so good we've gone hospital-wide with the Medline pressure ulcer prevention program," said Beth Edwards, RN, BS, clinical quality specialist for Jennie Edmundson Hospital.

According to users, the keys to success of Medline's PUPP program are the educational materials, such as nurse and nursing assistant workbooks, instructor notebooks and teaching materials, as well as patient and family education brochures. The program also provides long-term assistance in the areas of staff education, training and tracking the program's effectiveness.

Skin care products in the program include Medline's Remedy® line of moisturizers, cleansers, skin protectants and antifungals. Incontinence products, such as dry pads and adult briefs, are also part of the product offering. Both of these products help keep the skin dry, which is a crucial step in reducing and preventing incontinence-associated skin maceration and potential development of pressure ulcers. To round out the pressure ulcer prevention program, low-air-loss mattresses are also offered, which help to reduce pressure on sensitive areas of the body.

According to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), the total cost to treat pressure ulcers in the United States is estimated at $11 billion per year. In 2006 there were 503,300 hospital stays during which pressure ulcers were noted - a 78 percent increase from 1993, according to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality's (AHRQ) Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP).

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