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International Pressure Ulcer Experts Present Guidelines for Performing Prevalence and Incidence Studies | NEWS-Line for Home Care Professionals

International Pressure Ulcer Experts Present Guidelines for Performing Prevalence and Incidence Studies


Kinetic Concepts, Inc. announced the first comprehensive publication of international guidelines for performing prevalence and incidence studies on pressure ulcers (PUs), which was introduced at the Biennial Conference of the National Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel held February 27-28 in Washington, D.C.

The consensus document, International Guidelines Pressure Ulcer Prevention: Prevalence and Incidence in Context, was developed by an international expert working group to provide guidance on performing prevalence and incidence studies and how to use data collected to improve standards of care for PUs. The initiative draws on the significant clinical research evidence and the consensus opinion of 16 international experts in PU prevention and treatment.

"If we're to reduce the occurrence of pressure ulcers we need to focus on prevention," said Professor Keith Harding, Chair of the Working Group and Head of the Wound Healing Research Unit, Cardiff University, UK. "And today's prevention efforts are seriously hindered by a lack of standardized data collection that leads to invalid benchmarking and evaluation of programs."

The consensus document provides best practice guidelines in the following critical areas:
- Prevalence and incidence;
- Data collection and recording;
- Study population;
- Pressure ulcer identification;
- Classification;
- Evaluation, interpretation and comparison

"Pressure ulcers are a global health issue," said Lynne Sly, Global President Therapeutic Support Systems for Kinetic Concepts, Inc. (KCI). "KCI is committed to the prevention and treatment of pressure ulcers in acute care settings throughout the world -- through a full line of therapeutic surface systems and a comprehensive wound care program that helps providers assess and improve the quality of their pressure ulcer care. We were pleased to provide the unrestricted educational grant that facilitated the development of this valuable consensus document."

On October 1, 2008, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) implemented a change in the hospital payment system. Hospitals no longer receive additional payment for cases when certain selected conditions -- including stage III and IV pressure ulcers -- were not present on admission. Charges to CMS per hospital stay for pressure ulcers were reported at $43,180.00 in 2007. This new payment system makes risk assessment and prevention of pressure ulcers a priority for acute care providers and underscores the significance of the consensus document.

"Everyone should be aware of the need to prevent pressure ulcers and collect data in their facilities to strategize about how to reduce the numbers of incident pressure ulcers," said Joyce Black, PhD, associate professor at the University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Nursing and a member of the expert working group that developed the consensus document. "The document provides pertinent study guidelines that can be translated into improved clinical care that helps prevent pressure ulcers."

Published in January 2009, the document will be available at KCI's web sites (www.kci1.com in the US and www.kci-medical.com for international markets) and at Medical Education Partnership Ltd (www.mepltd.co.uk). Key messages from the consensus document will be published in an upcoming edition of the International Wound Journal.

A global leader in pressure ulcer management, KCI's Wound Care Program helps facilities minimize the incidence of PUs and better manage costs associated with Stage I and II PU treatment and prevention. A similar wound care program, Kinexus, is offered by KCI in Austria and Germany.

KCI's four-step program is comprised of assessment, planning, implementation and reassessment. KCI has the only published PU Prevalence and Incidence Survey in the industry. Its national and international prevalence and incidence database contains approximately 500,000 patients assessed for prevalence and 140,000 assessed for incidence.

Kinetic Concepts, Inc. is a leading global medical technology company devoted to the discovery, development, manufacture and marketing of innovative, high-technology therapies and products for the wound care, tissue regeneration and therapeutic support system markets. Headquartered in San Antonio, Texas, KCI's success spans more than three decades and can be traced to a history deeply rooted in innovation and a passion for significantly improving the healing - and the lives - of patients around the world.

KCI's three primary businesses include:

Advanced Wound Care - Includes KCI's proprietary Vacuum Assisted Closure, or V.A.C. Therapy System, which has been clinically demonstrated to promote wound healing through unique mechanisms of action while reducing the overall cost of treating patients with complex wounds.

Regenerative Medicine - Represented by KCI's LifeCell business and includes tissue-based products for use in reconstructive, orthopedic and urogynecologic surgical procedures to repair soft tissue defects.

Therapeutic Support Systems - Includes specialty hospital beds, mattress replacement systems and overlays designed to address pulmonary complications associated with immobility, to reduce skin breakdown and assist caregivers in the safe and dignified handling of patients of size.

The company employs 7,000 people and markets its products in more than 20 countries.

The NPUAP serves as the authoritative voice for improved patient outcomes in pressure ulcer prevention and treatment through public policy, education, and research. Every two years, the NPUAP brings together different disciplines, different cultures and nationalities working toward a universal solution to improve patient outcomes.

Armstrong DG, et al. "New Opportunities to Improve Pressure Ulcer Prevention and Treatment: Implications of the CMS Inpatient Hospital Care Present on Admission (POA) Indicators/Hospital-acquired Conditions (HAC) Policy." A consensus paper from the International Expert Wound Care Advisory Panel. May 2008.

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