Each year, more than 2.5 million acute care patients in the United States suffer from hospital-acquired pressure injuries (HAPIs) and as many as 60,000 die from their complications.10
The cost of caring for these patients – estimates range from $9.9 billion3 to $11 billion10 a year – is greater than the cost of treating seven other common hospital-acquired conditions (HACs) combined: surgical site infections, falls, catheter-associated urinary tract infections (CAUTIs), deep vein thrombosis (DVTs), ventilator- associated pneumonia (VAP), clostridium difficile colitis (CDIs), and central line bloodstream infections (CLABSIs).6
The implications for hospitals are significant since the average incremental financial burden for each pressure injury is $21,767,11 the average HAPI patient’s length of stay increases by 9.5 days11 and HAPI patients are more likely to be readmitted for additional treatment.12
Perhaps more concerning, HAPI rates are increasing. US government data show that HAPIs are the most common HAC, growing by 6% even as HACs overall have declined by 13%.6
HAPIs develop when patients are not repositioned with sufficient frequency to prevent prolonged pressure, particularly over bony prominences like the sacrum, coccyx, heels, and occiput.13 Sustained pressure compresses tissue, impairing blood flow and leading to localized tissue damage and cellular death. The injuries can be extremely painful and, in extreme cases, can contribute to a patient’s death.
The standard of care is to turn or reposition patients who are at risk to develop pressure injuries every two hours, round the clock. Those risk factors – age, mobility/activity, poor perfusion and vasopressor infusion – are early indicators of potential problems.14 However, the two-hour turning protocol is often difficult to adhere to because nurses are task-saturated and patient turning is likely a lower priority than more acute patient care needs. Several studies conducted in the last decade show that adherence to this two-hour protocol can range from 10%15 to 64%,4 depending on the extent to which an institution enforces its patient repositioning practices, with an average national adherence rate of 48%.16
Also, the traditional turn reminders and alerts available to institutions to encourage adherence can be ineffective,17 which can also contribute to low protocol adherence rates.
The LEAF Patient Monitoring System’s wearable technology improves care
The LEAF System has transformed the way hospitals prevent HAPIs.
Traditional systems to remind nurses to reposition patients are like kitchen timers that ring at a set interval, generally a single interval for all patients in an institution. The LEAF System allows healthcare providers to optimize repositioning by tailoring turn frequency for each patient’s needs. It monitors a patient’s movement and provides visual information to help staff to make sure patients are repositioned according to their individual turn protocols, are turned with sufficient adequacy to offload tissue, and remain off their pressurized side long enough for the tissue to reperfuse. It also provides hospitals robust data they can use to address individual patient needs, manage treatment within each unit or identify trends across the entire institution – or even across a health network.
Reminders are sent wirelessly to the appropriate display at the nurses’ station or on individual workstations (i.e., WOWs). As a result, adherence to turn protocols in facilities using the LEAF◊ System has been shown to be higher than the national average of 48%. Studies16,18-21 have found adherence improves considerably once the LEAF System is deployed, with average turn protocol adherence reaching 98%.7
For detailed product information, including indications for use, contraindications, warnings and precautions, please consult the product’s applicable Instructions for Use (IFU) prior to use.
Asset Number: LFEE43-32824-0422