Implementation of a sensor solution has resulted in an 89 percent increase in compliance with turning protocols at the Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Center in Boise, Idaho, as part of a nationwide project aimed at reducing pressure ulcers in VA hospitals.
The wearable sensors from Pleasanton, Calif.-based Leaf Healthcare Inc. also increased nurses' workflow and productivity by alerting them as to when to turn a patient and by allowing them to track the amount of tissue decompression time experienced by each patient.
"Before using the Leaf system, our policy in at-risk units was to turn all patients regardless of their risk factors for pressure ulcers," said Margaret Doucette, DO, chief of hysical medicine and rehabilitation and director for wound care at the Boise VA medical center, in a press release. "Leaf tracking reduces the resource burden required for patient turning by roughly 80 percent without compromising care or pressure ulcer prevention efforts. That ensures we provide the highest quality care, while allowing us to contain costs."
The system uses lightweight, wearable sensors that electronically monitor positions and movements then communicate those data wirelessly to a central monitoring station or mobile devices.