How to treat and prevent pressure ulcers – Piece of cake!

ulcer cupcakes 460
How to treat and prevent pressure ulcers – Piece of cake!
17 November 2014

THE Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust is using the power of cupcakes to help promote its Pressure Ulcer Awareness Week from 17th to 21st November 2014.

Staff and volunteers at each of the Trust’s hospitals (North Manchester General Hospital, The Royal Oldham Hospital, Rochdale Infirmary and Fairfield General Hospital in Bury), will be distributing a variety of different resources including free cupcakes to help promote the event.

To coincide with World Wide Stop the Pressure Day on 20th November 2014, and Stop the Pressure month hosted by organisations including the European Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel and NHS England we will be starting our very own week long awareness drive 17th to 21st November 2014.

During the week, members of the Trust’s tissue viability team and a band of volunteers will engage with members of the public, patients and staff and give out free cupcakes to promote key issues about pressure ulcers and how they can be avoided.

A team of specially selected ‘pressure ulcer champions’ will spread the word across all our wards and departments. We have also created a special new video which shows a range of pressure ulcer prevention strategies which the Trust has been introducing across our wards and departments. This video will be downloadable from the Trust website and featured on the Trust’s YouTube channel.

Pressure ulcers are caused by damage on the skin and underlying tissue that can lead to an open wound. They are caused by pressure on bony areas like your bottom, heel, hip, elbow, ankle, shoulder and back of your head.

Pressure ulcers are painful and distressing, however many pressure ulcers can be prevented by taking a few simple steps. They are commonly known as bed sores and typically occur among patients who cannot move or who have lost sensation.  Prolonged periods of immobility put pressure on the skin, soft tissue, or bone, causing tissue damage to develop.

Judy Harker, nurse consultant for tissue viability at the Trust, said:

“Pressure ulcer prevention continues to be our absolute top priority here at Pennine.  Colleagues at all levels of the organisation from health care assistants to the Chief Nurse are playing their part in the drive towards eradicating pressure ulcers. We have recently started using social media as a means by which we can network with a wider audience by both sharing our successes and learning from others.

“The way in which vulnerable patients are now being assessed for their risk of pressure ulcers has recently been improved. This means that we can target the right care at those most at risk quickly and efficiently. We are also monitoring patients' records to ensure their skin is being checked regularly and that they are being turned regularly to relieve pressure from vulnerable areas of their body. The results of this exercise have shown significant improvements in care. These are just a few examples of how Pennine is taking pressure prevention seriously and is committed to safe, high quality care.”