The scourge of bedsores is being confronted

Published: August 6, 2009  |  Source: communities.kintera.org/REEVE
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What do you know about bedsores? They come from too much pressure on your skin in one place for too long. If you are paralyzed, and have no sensation, say, on your butt, you might not even be aware you have one. And it can kill you.

Believe it or not, an ongoing controversy concerning whether or not bedsores are preventable was resolved when Medicare declared pressure ulcers (bedsores) a “never event”, i.e. a medical error. This was followed by the decision by major insurers, including Medicare, to cease reimbursement to hospitals for expenses connected with treatment of pressure ulcers developed in the hospital.

This is where the National Decubitus Foundation comes in. They published a study showing that those few hospitals that had been able to reduce bedsore incidence far below the national average had adopted a common policy. They each evaluated all patients for pressure ulcer risk upon admission, then placed all at-risk patients on a special pressure redistribution support surface, designed to prevent bedsores. With the aid of a Quality of Life grant from the Reeve Foundation, the NDF was able to distribute this study to almost all acute care hospitals and to every state public health department.

Find out more about bedsores.