Proposed Change in Patient Care Delivery

Subject: Nursing
Pages: 6
Words: 1401
Reading time:
6 min
Study level: Bachelor

Introduction

The current direct practice improvement (DPI) project is to reduce the prevalence of pressure injuries among patients of 75 years old and higher in a medical unit. There is no doubt that the desired outcome can be achieved if it is possible to change patient care delivery standards. It is so because a conventional care approach fails to cope with the task since multiple individuals suffer from the given medical condition, subjecting the whole healthcare industry to a significant financial burden. This information denotes that there should be robust reasoning behind implementing the given DPI project. Consequently, this assignment is going to present a proposed change in patient care delivery, focusing on finance, quality, patient safety, and patient experience.

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Background of the Issue

To begin with, one should justify the claim that pressure ulcers are a significant problem for the healthcare industry. The study by Mutairi and Hendrie (2018) reviews the global prevalence of the condition under analysis and concludes that the mean incidence was 6.3% (p. 23). This figure demonstrates that multiple individuals worldwide suffer from pressure ulcers. Even though Van Gilder et al. (2017) argue that this condition’s incidence declined between 2006 and 2015, it is still reasonable to take additional efforts to improve the situation. It is so because Padula et al. (2018) state that in the United States, pressure ulcers “affect over 2.5 million individuals resulting in 60,000 deaths” (p. 1). Furthermore, one should explain why the given medical condition is considered a financial burden. The reasoning behind this claim is that hospitals spend “an estimated $9.1 to $11.6 billion annually” to cope with the given issue (Padula et al., 2018, p. 2). Thus, the data demonstrate that pressure injuries are a significant problem, and it is necessary to address it.

SWOT Analysis

A SWOT analysis is a practical tool to determine what strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats can contribute to or harm the DPI project implementation. The leading strength refers to the fact that the project focuses on quality improvement and increased safety, meaning that sufficient internal motivation will support the change process. Simultaneously, the conventional care delivery approach that only relies on turning and repositioning can be considered a weakness since this strategy can imply dealing with outdated materials and equipment. It becomes more challenging for patients and their caregivers to achieve the desired health outcomes if it is true. The project can face a significant opportunity that the proposed change will be supported by numerous medical organizations, which will result in better care. Finally, the given DPI project can suffer from an essential external threat because a growing number of patients who can be subject to pressure ulcers will affect the probability of reaching the desired goal.

Proposed Solution

Since it has been identified that pressure injuries are a significant problem in the healthcare industry, it is necessary to offer a solution. It is a known fact that this medical condition appears because continuous pressure affects people’s skin. That is why it is reasonable to try to reduce this pressure, and specific mattresses seem to address this situation. Thus, Sauvage et al. (2017) compare the effectiveness of alternating pressure air mattresses (APAMs) and viscoelastic foam mattresses (VFMs) and conclude that APAMs lead to better results. However, the randomized controlled study by Beeckman et al. (2019) considers APAMs and static air mattresses. These researchers have identified that static air mattresses are better because they reduce pressure ulcer incidence, have longer lifespans, and can be purchased at lower prices (Beeckman et al., 2019). These literature findings allow for supposing that the use of static air mattresses is a practical solution for the identified issue.

Meeting the Need of the Population

This section will comment on whether the identified solution meets stakeholders’ needs. Firstly, the proposed intervention is suitable for healthcare organizations and professionals. It is so because their need is to achieve patient safety and provide individuals with high-quality care, and static air mattresses lead to satisfying these requirements. Secondly, the use of these equipment pieces is beneficial for patients. These individuals feel satisfied when they do not face health issues, and the literature findings above have revealed that static air mattresses help patients meet the expected outcomes.

Thirdly, one can say that the proposed solution meets payers’ needs. On the one hand, it refers to the fact that attempts to prevent pressure ulcers are cost-effective when compared to funds that are necessary for treating these conditions (Padula et al., 2018). On the other hand, Beeckman et al. (2019) mention that when it comes to treating pressure ulcers, “the cost per patient per day ranged from €1.71 to €470.49” (p. 106). As for static air mattresses, four items result in “a daily cost of €0.74 per day” over a 9-year lifespan (Beeckman et al., 2019, p. 109). These data demonstrate that the proposed solution leads to increased cost-effectiveness.

Proposed Change Process

Now, it is rational to explain how the proposed change process can be implemented. The most significant step is to purchase a sufficient number of static air mattresses. The exact quantity of equipment pieces depends on how many beds a single medical unit has. It means that a healthcare organization should spend a significant sum of money at once, while cost-effectiveness will only be achieved in the long run. Simultaneously, one should admit that purchasing and using the mattresses are not the only activity in the offered intervention. It is so because healthcare professionals should also follow a conventional approach to care delivery. In other words, regular turning and repositioning should remain in use. This statement denotes that the mattresses should be considered a supplementary intervention that increases the efficacy of the existing practice.

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Expected Outcomes

The proposed change process aims at achieving multiple outcomes that are positive for different stakeholders. Firstly, a reduced prevalence of pressure injuries among patients of 75 years old and higher is the leading outcome. It offers essential advantages to many groups within the healthcare industry since this result improves the quality of care, leads to enhanced patient safety, and improves patient experience after obtaining care. If fewer patients suffer from this medical condition, healthcare professionals do not become overloaded with their work duties, which provides them with more time to serve individuals with other issues. Secondly, the proposed intervention is going to reduce healthcare organizations’ expenses. Since it has been identified that preventing pressure injuries is more cost-effective than treating them, the use of static air mattresses implies some financial benefits. Consequently, taxpayers feel more satisfied since they see that their money is spent reasonably to improve patient health and enhance the healthcare industry.

Implications

This section will present a significant implication that can be achieved based on the information above. It refers to the suggestion that various medical establishments should invest in purchasing static air mattresses to reduce the incidence of pressure ulcers among older patients. This implication is aligned with current and future healthcare financing trends. Kamal et al. (2020) demonstrate that medical expenses have risen significantly, from $74.1 billion in 1970 to $3.8 trillion in 2019. A tendency of increasing healthcare financing is evident, while the COVID-19 crisis indicates that additional resources should be allocated to overcome the pandemic’s adverse outcomes. That is why it is reasonable to find ways to reduce expenses, which is necessary to ensure that the American healthcare system is equipped with sufficient resources. In this situation, introducing static air mattresses is an adequate solution since this strategy promises to bring financial benefits in the long run.

Conclusion

The paper has commented on the direct practice improvement project to reduce the incidence of pressure ulcers among patients of 75 years and older in a medical unit. This medical condition deserves attention because multiple individuals suffer from it, which results in an essential financial burden for the medical system. The use of static air mattresses is considered an effective solution to the problem because these equipment pieces can minimize pressure on patients’ skin in lying positions. It has been identified that this intervention can meet the needs of patients, healthcare professionals, and taxpayers. It is so because the proposed change process aims at achieving a few outcomes that include reducing the prevalence of pressure injuries and lowering healthcare spending. As a result, the intervention will lead to quality improvement, increased patient safety, and financial benefits for healthcare organizations and the whole industry.

References

Beeckman, D., Serraes, B., Anrys, C., Van Tiggelen, H., Van Hecke, A., & Verhaeghe, S. (2019). A multicenter prospective randomized controlled clinical trial comparing the effectiveness and cost of a static air mattresses and alternating air pressure mattress to prevent pressure ulcers in nursing home residents. International Journal of Nursing Studies, 97, 105-113. Web.

Kamal, R., McDermott, D., Ramirez, G., & Cox, C. (2020). How has US spending on healthcare changed over time? Health System Tracker. Web.

Mutairi, K. B. A., & Hendrie, D. (2018). Global incidence and prevalence of pressure injuries in public hospitals: A systematic review. Wound Medicine, 22, 23-31. Web.

Padula, W. V., Pronovost, P. J., Makic, M. B. F., Wald, H. L., Moran, D., Mishra, M. K., & Meltzer, D. O. (2018). Value of hospital resources for effective pressure injury prevention: A cost-effectiveness analysis. BMJ Quality & Safety, 28(2), 1-10. Web.

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Sauvage, P., Touflet, M., Pradere, C., Portalier, F., Michel, J.-M., Charru, P., Passadori, Y., Fevrier, R., Hallet-Lezy, A.-M., Beauchene, F., & Sherrer, B. (2017). Pressure ulcers prevention efficacy of an alternating pressure air mattresses in elderly patients: E2MAO a randomized study. Journal of Wound Care, 26(6), 304-312. Web.

Van Gilder, C., Lachenbruch, C., Algrim-Boyle, C., & Meyer, S. (2017). The international pressure ulcer prevalence survey: 2006-2015. Journal of Wound, Ostomy, and Continence Nursing, 44(1), 20-28. Web.