Wound Healing Practice Development Unit
Compromised skin can have a profound effect on patients and their carers in the form of pain, suffering and social isolation, which can significantly decrease quality of life for the individual and his or her carer. The Wound Healing Practice Development Unit has been established in recognition of this, as well as of the substantial costs associated with the provision and delivery of tissue viability services. This cost is estimated to be in the billions, with those associated with pressure ulcer prevention and management alone accounting for more NHS expenditure than the entire budget for mental health services.
Centre of Excellence
The Unit aspires to be a centre of excellence, making a real difference to patients, carers and the professionals looking after them. In pursuit of excellence, it is essential to ensure that those caring for individuals have the knowledge, skills and attitudes to provide high quality, evidence-based care. It is also essential that generalists are empowered to carry out care within their capabilities and do not defer to specialists and risk becoming deskilled. The Unit will offer education provision to:
- Increase the knowledge and understanding of support staff and generalists caring for individuals in acute and community settings
- Enhance the expertise of specialist tissue viability professionals to ensure they have the current best evidence to effectively prescribe therapeutic interventions for patients
- Empower patients through the provision of user-friendly, evidence-based information.
The Unit will develop education provision to meet the needs of patients, carers and staff. It will also offer master classes for specialist practitioners, to increase their skill set and knowledge base.
Working together with industry partners will be essential to assist them in the evaluation of their products. This collaboration will result in expert reports on the potential impact of new technologies and products on practice.
Audit activity and research, the results from which will be applied to patients' carers, support staff and professionals. will be an integral part of the Unit's activities, enhancing evidence-based care provision and delivery.
Given the unit's aspirations, it will be essential to liaise with key decision makers in the field to influence government policy/expert opinion on the provision and delivery of tissue viability services. In work with other similarly minded groups to enable what would be a significant voice to be heard.