The prevention and reduction of pressure injuries have been an ongoing battle for the last 30 years. According to a report published in March 2018 by the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care, approximately 4300 hospital-acquired pressure injuries occur in Australian hospitals each year. This comes at a cost, not only financially, but mentally and physically to the patients. The treatment cost for 2018 was estimated at $104,510 with the average daily cost of a grade 4 injury being $102 a day. The overall cost from pressure area injuries go beyond that of just treatment costs. Personal costs such as transport, loss of income and the emotional toll that pressure area injuries create are difficult to measure. One Australian study found that the extended cost may be as much as $285 million a year.
A pressure injury to skin and underlying tissue is caused from constant or friction. It is more prevalent over bony extremities where the effects of pressure and friction combine, for example, on the sacrum and heels.
There are four stages to pressure injuries:
- Non-blanchable erythema of intact skin
- Partial-thickness skin loss with exposed dermis
- Full-thickness skin loss
- Full-thickness and tissue loss
Note: Unstageable – Obscured full-thickness skin and tissue loss
For pressure injuries, prevention is better than relying on a cure. Identifying risk factors may help prevent pressure injuries.
The risk factors include:
- Impaired mobility
- Impaired activity
- Impaired sensory perception
- Malnutrition or obesity
- Compromised skin integrity increasing age
- Decrease blood flow to the pressure injury
- Severely compromised health status
Treatments and intervention are dependent on the level and location of the injury and will vary between patients. A multifaceted approach will be necessary for treatment. This may include dietitians, pharmacists and wound management experts. Pressure and air mattresses are a recognised technique for healing and preventing pressure injuries. The two techniques to achieve this are reactive surface where the surface area is increased to reduce pressure and active surface that uses moving components to periodically offload the parts of the body under pressure. The use of hybrid support surfaces in one mattress is becoming more popular in clinical practice.
With its high clinical performance and innovation, Midmed has an extensive range of active and reactive solutions to meet your needs in varying clinical settings. Midmed offers a comprehensive range of therapeutic services designed to maximise patient comfort and minimise the adverse effects of immobilization.
Midmed has a wide range of mattresses to suit all patient requirements. Midmed’s mattress covers are/have:
- Vapour permeable
- Multidirectional laxity
- Fire retardant
- Fully welded zip with four sides
- Waterfall flaps
Each mattress feature has been designed with differing patient needs in mind.
The Midmed Acute Care range of mattresses includes static foam, foam and air mattresses, powered mattresses, replacements and a variety of seating options. The multilayered design and construction of these foam mattresses exceeds minimum Australian safety standards and are appropriate for hospital and residential care use. Each mattress is vigorously tested for durability, Thermo qualities and flame retardation. The gel particles used in the Midmed acute care mattresses provide optimum weight distribution. Careful attention to the heel zone is one of the intuitive features of the Acute Care mattress. It effectively guards against a variety of microbials including bacterial, yeast, and fungicide and is incorporated into the bedding foam. Acute care foam mattresses are available in paediatric, adult, bariatric types and come with or without evacuation systems. There is a 5-year warranty on the foam and a 2-year warranty on covers.
Midmed offers a range of alternating pressure mattresses. This therapeutic air surface support is designed to prevent and heal pressure injuries. Alternation therapy offers active pressure redistribution in 2 therapies. The 1 in 3 alternation low air loss therapy deflates every third cell for between 3 and 20 mins depending on the programmed cycle. Continuous static low air loss manages microclimate and moisture, keeping the skin dry . All therapy modes are adjustable to cater for the patient’s individual needs.
Included in the pressure injury prevention range are Midmed’s cushions and wedges. Both use Dunlop foam that has the built-in protection of Ultra Fresh, an anti-microbial that protects against bacteria, mould, fungi and mildew. The multi stretch, vapour permeable cover is easily maintained with a quick wipe. All seams are welded to prevent fluid leakage. Cushions use multi layers of hospital grade foam, wedges are single layer.
As you can see Midmed has an extensive range to help you prevent and treat pressure injuries. For information on any of our products please do not hesitate to call one of our expert specialist representatives on 1300 643 633.