Posts Tagged ‘Wound Care Education’

The Head to Toe Search for Wounds

Tuesday, June 12th, 2018

Nancy Collins, PhD, RDN, LD, NWCC, FAND

 

A comprehensive skin assessment should look for more than just wounds because many medical problems have telltale signs that are easy to see if you know what to look for.

comprehensive skin assessment

 

Dr Nancy Collins

Nancy Collins, PhD, RDN, LD, NWCC, FAND

 

POA. These three little letters have become very important in wound care because we must document any wounds present on admission (POA). By doing so, we are saying that these wounds began somewhere else—maybe at home, maybe in another care setting, but definitely not while under the present facility’s care. This distinction of origin has great implications both financially and legally.

 

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Discover the Benefits of Wound Care Nutrition Certification

Friday, February 9th, 2018

Nancy Collins, PhD, RDN, LD, NWCC, FAND

Whether you are looking to increase your wound care nutrition knowledge or advance your career, a new wound care certification course for Registered Dietitians (RD) and Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDN) will help you meet your goals, while improving outcomes for your wound care patients.

Discover the Benefits of Wound Care Nutrition Certification

 

I often get funny reactions when I tell people I specialize in wounds. Lay people always assume I mean bullet wounds. I notice them nodding with confusion when I go on to explain that I do not see many bullet wounds, but treat plenty of pressure injuries and diabetic foot ulcers.

Dr Nancy Collins

Nancy Collins, PhD, RDN, LD, NWCC, FAND

When I have the same conversation with nurses, patient care assistants, and other healthcare providers who do not specialize in wounds, they seem to nod with a similar amount of confusion. They immediately think of topical care and turning and repositioning—all important to wound healing—but they overlook the fact that in order to build new tissue it is necessary to have adequate nutritional substrate onboard.

Clearing up this confusion is one of the reasons I am so excited to share the new nutrition certification available from the National Alliance of Wound Care and Ostomy® (NAWCO®). Hopefully every skin and wound care team will soon have a certified nutrition member to help heal wounds from the inside out!

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Wound Consulting Business: Do You Have What It Takes?

Friday, July 28th, 2017

Thinking about starting your own wound care business or becoming a wound consultant? Here’s what you need to know.

Wound Consulting Business: Do You Have What It Takes?

 

(Editor’s note: this is Part One of a two-part series on starting your own wound consulting business. Part Two will explore how to get started.)

Being a wound consultant is a dream for so many clinicians. It can be exciting and rewarding to start a wound care business, but it can also be overwhelming, confusing and risky. So before you take the plunge, here are some serious questions and factors to consider.

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Venous vs. Arterial Ulcers: What’s the Difference?

Friday, July 21st, 2017

How can you remember the difference between venous vs. arterial ulcers? Visualization is a good place to start.

Venous vs. Arterial: What’s the Difference?

 

One of the most basic lessons in wound care education is learning the characteristics of venous vs. arterial ulcers – and being able to tell the difference between the two. It can be downright tricky – especially for new clinicians. Fortunately, we have a handy technique for remembering what to look for. And it all starts with visualizing what causes the wound in the first place.

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Pressure Injuries and Medical Device Dilemmas

Friday, June 16th, 2017

Medical device-related pressure injuries (MDRPIs) are a standard part of wound care, but preventative practices can make a big difference.

Medical Device-Related Pressure Injuries

 

One of the first things clinicians learn about treating pressure injuries is to find the cause of the pressure and simply remove it. Sounds simple, doesn’t it? But what do you do when the cause of the pressure injury is a medical device which is not only necessary, but literally sustaining a patient’s life?

While some medical device-related pressure injuries are unavoidable, there are things clinicians can do to relieve the pressure and heal the injury. Here’s what you need to know.

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Wound Care Champions: A Nurse and a Five-Star Company

Friday, June 2nd, 2017

What does it take to build a five-star home health agency? Wound care education – and a credentialed staff – are a big part of it. 

Deer Meadows Home Health and Support Services

 

We know how wound care education helps transform the careers and lives of individuals. We also know that it can positively affect entire facilities, make a difference in communities, and drastically influence the lives of patients and professionals. That’s why we love to share success stories when we hear them.

Take, for example, Deer Meadows Home Health and Support Services, LLC (DMHHSS), a five-star, nonprofit (and stand-alone) home health company in Philadelphia. It is known for excellent care, an exceptional staff, and wound care education advocacy. But it didn’t happen overnight. It did happen, however, with very specific goals in mind: to heal patients and treat them like family; forge relationships; and promote wound care education.

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Shingles: Treatment and Managing Pain

Friday, May 26th, 2017

Clinicians can help relieve patient pain and discomfort caused by shingles with these treatment options.

Shingles: Treatment and Managing Pain

 

Did you know that one in three people in the United States is affected by shingles? This common and very painful skin condition also happens to be made worse by stress – like hospitalization and other chronic illnesses. As clinicians, we are in the position to help reduce patient pain and discomfort as best we can. There is no cure, but there are a variety of treatments that can help.

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Wound Care and Epibole: It’s All About the Edge

Thursday, May 18th, 2017

How do you spot an unhealthy wound edge? Learn more about the causes, prevention and treatment of epibole.

Wound Care and Epibole: It’s All About the Edge

 

When it comes to treating epibole, it’s all about knowing what a healthy wound edge looks like – and being able to spot signs of trouble. This basic overview includes epibole causes, prevention and treatment. We’ll have you ready to meet this condition head-on and get your patients on their way to recovery.

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10 Most Common Ostomy Patient Questions

Wednesday, August 17th, 2016

Ostomy Lifestyle Specialist and fellow ostomate Laura Cox shares her most frequently asked patient questions (and she gives you the answers, too).

Ten Most Common Ostomy Patient Questions

photo: Sherry Yates Young/Shutterstock.com

Editor’s note: in her blog series, Ostomy Lifestyle Specialist Laura Cox, Shield HeatlhCare, shares lifestyle tips and information with fellow ostomates. After being diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis at the age of eighteen, Cox underwent ileostomy surgery in 2011. Today, you can find her one-on-one advice, support and insights at her OstomyLife blog, and on other Shield HealthCare social media sites.

 

In my experience working with a variety of healthcare professionals and patients, I continuously field a variety of questions about ostomies, some of which I hear again and again. And I’m always happy to answer them.

For clinicians working with ostomy surgery patients, it’s important to be armed with helpful information that can be shared in order to help them learn to be more comfortable and confident after surgery. That’s why I’ve compiled the ten most common questions that ostomy patients ask – along with my answers from personal experience. By sharing them within your facility, you can help your patients feel more confident as they heal and regain their independence.

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News Flash: Document Education or Risk Facing Pressure Ulcer Citations

Thursday, December 17th, 2015

Failing to provide and document wound care educational efforts can lead to citations! Most recently, a facility was cited for not providing written documentation to a patient and his family about his Stage II pressure ulcer.

Document Education or Risk Citation

Wound care clinicians love to talk about wounds – preventing, treating and healing them. We love to compare notes, study photographs and learn about new techniques and strategies. But another vital piece of our job involves educating others, whether it be patients, family members or colleagues. Keeping everyone in the loop is essential to achieve the best outcomes, and avoid citations.

What it might look like now

Pressure Ulcer Staging Guide

Click for our FREE Pressure Ulcer Staging Guide

When we say that education must be a part of our pressure ulcer treatment and prevention program, we’re talking about routinely:

  • Providing printed information on the etiology of risk factors
  • Discussing the importance of risk and skin assessments
  • Explaining the role of support surfaces and the importance of positioning
  • Ensuring that each patient has a skin-care program individualized to meet their needs

These components of care are often accomplished during a staff in-service, or at care team meetings that focus on individual patients. But how are our patients and family members being educated on this issue?

Most clinicians would say that it is done by the individual licensed caregiver (often a nurse), as part of their normal daily activities on the unit.  The problem with this approach is that it’s not always documented, and often not very structured.  And this can lead to trouble.

What it must look like now

So what exactly are the expectations when it comes to pressure ulcer education according to today’s standards? Let’s consider what the 2014 International Guidelines for the Prevention and Treatment of Pressure Ulcers has to say about it.

In the section on implementing the guidelines, it speaks directly to patient consumers and their caregivers, and advises us to work with our healthcare teams and learn about pressure ulcer risk factors (and how this relates to their individual situation).  In order to meet this important objective, health care professionals must provide language appropriate printed materials, e-learning packages, and internet resources for the patient.

And where can you get such materials? Patient and consumer recommendation documents are currently being developed by the Guideline authors (we will let you know when they are available), but until then, one resource is MedlinePlus, where you can find the following patient handouts:

  • How to Care for Pressure Sores
  • Pressure Ulcer
  • Preventing Pressure Ulcers

No education? Hello, citation!

So besides the fact that a comprehensive pressure ulcer education program is crucial for better outcomes, failing to do so can lead to citations. All patient education, topics, methods, and responses must be documented.

Lesson learned?

The standards of care are always changing, and as wound care professionals, it’s critical to keep up with these changes. Do you and your facility currently meet these expectations when it comes to pressure ulcer education? How do you make sure patients and family members are not only being educated properly, but that these efforts are being documented as complete in the medical record? Please leave your thoughts or comments below.