Archive March 2019 XX, No. 3

Ideas That Work: Pressure Injury Prevention

We Switched From Foam to Gel Pads

University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics
NO PRESSURE Staff at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics look at fluidized-pressurized devices and 5-layer silicone foam dressing during a vendor fair.

When you rewrite your policy on reducing pressure injuries, you then need to get the right pressure redistributing devices to implement the policy. We invited vendors of positioning products to send us the evidence-based data that supports their products’ efficacy.

Once we trimmed the list of products down to 5, we invited those companies to a 2-day vendor fair, to come on site with a clinical expert and tell us why we should invest in their product to reduce pressure injuries on our patients. This provided a venue for frontline OR staff and physicians to see the products and ask questions. Cost was the last thing we considered. The most important thing to us was the evidence showing the efficacy of the patient positioning devices.

We ended up eliminating foam — foam doesn’t have any pressure redistribution properties — and chose to go with viscoelastic gel pads and positioners.

Amos Schonrock, MAN, RN, CSSM, CNOR, PHN
University of Iowa
Hospitals and Clinics
Iowa City, Iowa

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