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Strengthen Patient Care by Reducing Hospital Acquired Pressure Ulcers (HAPU)
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(May 18, 2020)

The cost of treating hospital-acquired pressure ulcer (HAPU) places a significant burden on not only Patients but also to healthcare facilities. Such unplanned expenses potentially include increase in Hospitalization, prolonged medication, increase in Specialized care, Occupancy of Indoor (At times Intensive Care), increased staffing, Parenteral and Nutritional support, laboratory tests, and more treatment expenditures. The development of pressure ulcers (PUs) is associated with the quality of health care. Hence, higher rates of PU development (PUD) may signal overall poor care by the healthcare system. When pressure ulcers are detected early, they are treatable. If left untreated, pressure ulcers can develop into the later stages of the condition, resulting in fatal complications like increased Length of stay, Pain, Infection, Mortality & Morbidity. It also adds to the cost of treatment depending on the stage. Considering it as a major healthcare concern, prevention of HAPU was taken up as an Improvement project by the Fortis Escorts Hospital, Jaipur. Based on data regarding monthly occurrences of HAPU during 2012-2013,our Quality & Nursing team investigated contributory factors and reviewed current tools and standards of practices related to pressure ulcer prevention. Strategic plans were developed to reduce the incidence of HAPU. Such strategies include the application of Lean Six Sigma tools like Poka Yoke, Ishikawa, Pareto approach to monitor & prevent occurrence of HAPU in the hospital. Follow-up monitoring revealed no HAPU occurrence from February 2013 till date. Hence, pressure ulcer prevention strategies as found effective in reducing incidence during a 1-year period have been approved as standards of practices for the unit.

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