Cracking Down on Pressure Ulcers

By NJHA, Special for  USDR

Aging, bed-bound patients are vulnerable to skin injuries known as pressure ulcers where the skin breaks down because of immobility. Pressure ulcers take a toll on an individual’s health and quality of life, and they also cost the nation’s healthcare system an estimated $11.6 billion annually to treat, according to the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and  Quality.

To help clinicians respond to the challenges of pressure ulcers, NJHA Healthcare Business Solutions recently released the 4th edition of the Pocket Guide to Pressure Ulcers, written by wound care experts Jeffrey Levine, MD, and Elizabeth Ayello, Ph.D., RN. Dr. Levine is a geriatrician at Mount Sinai Beth Israel Medical Center and an Associate Professor of Geriatrics and Palliative Care at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, while Dr. Ayello is a faculty member at Excelsior College School of Nursing, past president of the National Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel and has held several editorial positions for prominent wound care  journals.

The guide is part of an ongoing focus on reducing the occurrence of pressure ulcers in the healthcare community. In the past five years, New Jersey hospitals have reduced the incidence of pressure ulcers by 38 percent, with an accompanying cost savings of $34.4 million, according to data from the New Jersey Hospital Association. NJHA Healthcare Business Solutions is an NJHA  affiliate.

The pocket-size guide is designed to fit in a lab coat pocket, giving physicians, nurses, certified nurses aides and others an easily accessible reference tool to identify and document pressure ulcers. Using universal language on pressure ulcers – sometimes also referred to as pressure injuries – the guide targets a broad cross section of clinicians and caregivers across the healthcare continuum. The enhanced guide adds treatment strategies and approaches, has an amplified section on infection control as well as enriched information on palliative care for wounds. Vivid new photographs and illustrations depict medical-device related  wounds.

“Pressure ulcers remain a major health problem that affects close to 3 million adults annually despite strides to prevent, accurately diagnose and treat pressure ulcers every day,” notes Dr. Levine. “Preventing, staging and treating pressure ulcers is now a multidisciplinary responsibility within healthcare  institutions.”

Adds Dr. Ayello, “Clinicians at every level and in every setting can use this tool to become even more expert in wound care and improve outcomes. Our format is unique and covers accurate staging, documentation and treatment of pressure issues with the goal of educating providers with easy-to-access, relevant  information.”

The Pocket Guide to Pressure Ulcers, Fourth Edition, is affordably priced at $15.99. More information is available at

The New Jersey Hospital Association, based in Princeton, is the statewide advocate for its member hospitals and post-acute providers and the patients they serve. Its Health Research and Educational Trust is an industry leader in collaboratives to improve hospital quality and patient safety, including a focus on reducing pressure ulcers and other hospital-acquired conditions. NJHA Healthcare Business Solutions is an NJHA affiliate which provides group purchasing and other products and services to help healthcare providers reduce healthcare costs and increase  value.

SOURCE New Jersey Hospital Association  (NJHA)

All opinions expressed on USDR are those of the author and not necessarily those of US Daily Review.