In a care home environment, the client, as much as a patient in an acute environment, benefits from regular turning.
Supported by the NICE guidelines it has been proven that regular turning regimes can prevent, and in some cases, can significantly contribute to the healing process of existing pressure injuries, whether presented upon arrival or even acquired at the care home.
Who is most likely to get a pressure ulcer?
Anyone living in a care home can develop a pressure ulcer, but some factors make it more likely:
• Limited mobility/unable to change position without help
• A loss of feeling in part of the body
• History of pressure ulcers, or having one now
• Not having eaten or hydrated well for a sustained period
• Thin, dry or weak skin
• A significant cognitive impairment
How does a pressure ulcer occur?
• Pressure ulcers occur when an area of skin and the tissues underneath it are damaged by being under such pressure that the blood supply is reduced; typically when people spend long periods in a bed or chair.
Barriers to effective turning & how can equipment help with prevention and therapy?
Equipment that offers suitable pressure relieving or pressure redistribution qualities subject to the risk factors can reduce or even remove the prevalence of PI’s provided a suitable Care Plan is written and implemented in conjunction with an accurate risk assessment of the clients needs.
All organisations recognise the need for regular turning but the pressures they face from reduced staffing levels, in a reducing labour pool, means that the demands on reduced staffing levels can sometimes mean that the ideological turning regimes are not always met, leading to the risk of acquired pressure injuries.
The answer appears simple, invest in highly motivated capable staff, manage the client diligently and offer assistance in maintaining independent mobility. But of course, that’s not sometimes possible, staff may be slightly less motivated due to external factors and independent patient mobility is not always the case.
Equipment however can assist with that issue especially when a high dependence for repositioning is required. The Optima Turn Mattress System by Wellell has been designed to reduce the burden on caregivers, aiding repositioning without having to necessarily touch the patient, benefitting all parties: the patient, their family, the carer and the care home.
If you are facing these issues and need help? Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
*Reference NICE guidelines (https://www.nice.org.uk)
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