Despite ever-growing sophistication in the field of health care, studies have shown that the healing rate of leg ulcers has not improved since the 1980s. Although some of this phenomenon can be attributed to an expanding aging population and the increased complexities in clinical needs for those with leg ulcerations, health care professionals and patients alike are desperate for improvements in care.
“Ever more vulnerable patients need compression therapy in order to control lower-limb edema, skin condition and pain, and to maximize wound healing,” say the editors at NursingTimes.net. “Therapy therefore requires more skill, and competence in assessment and management is crucial to safe and effective care (Anderson, 2012). If leg ulcer care is left to practitioners who do not have the relevant competencies or are not directly supervised by competent practitioners, risks to patients increase. Unless data is collected to show adverse effects of treatment (or non-treatment), these risks remain hidden.”
Shockingly, the editors indicated that some health care assistants are not confident when applying compression therapy due to the fear of causing damage to the patient – proof that more oversight is needed for staff in these positions. If the prevalence for poor practice in this area continues, more patients will experience delayed healing and greater risk for infection.
“Care would be improved by better clinical reporting of adverse events and of the levels of compression applied to patients,” the editors continued. “This would highlight the quality of care patients receive, the problems they experience and any deficits in the competence and skills of staff.”
In addition to the training needed when applying bandages, health care professionals will also need to be properly trained on how to recognize bandage damage. The same holds true for identifying and training best practices for how to record the progress of healing.
WoundRounds has the ability to provide real-time data and clinical tools to health care professionals, which will be essential for delivering better care and achieving better outcomes in the future. To learn how WoundRounds can facilitate the effort to improve the quality of wound care, don’t hesitate to reach out to us.