Implementation of the Champions for Skin Integrity model to improve leg and foot ulcer care in the primary healthcare setting
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Authors: Parker CN, Shuter P, Maresco-Pennisi D, Sargent J, Collins L, Edwards HE, Finlayson KJ.
Publication: Journal of clinical nursing
To facilitate evidence-based leg and foot ulcer management through implementation of the Champions for Skin Integrity model to education in primary health care in Australia.
Leg and foot ulcers are frequently seen wounds in general practice and wound care the most frequently performed activity by practice nurses. The literature reports the lack of evidence-based leg and foot ulcer assessment, management and prevention strategies in this setting, and previous research in regard to confidence and knowledge has indicated that general practice health professionals have the greatest need for education in wound care.
Pre-post, nonequivalent group research design.
The Champions for Skin Integrity model of evidence-based wound management utilised strategies including workshops, development of Champions and use of resources. Pre- and post-implementation health professional surveys and patient clinical audits were completed. Descriptive statistics were calculated for all variables. Paired t tests identified statistically significant differences between the pre/post staff survey data. STROBE guidelines for reporting were followed (See Appendix S1).
One hundred nine general practice healthcare professional staff attended the workshops. Significant outcomes were noted in increased levels of confidence in ability to assess, manage and prevent all types of leg and foot ulcers, as well as to apply evidence-based practice and change management following workshops. Pre- and post-skin audits also indicated an increase in evidence-based practices.
Implementation of Champions for Skin Integrity strategies in this sample of primary healthcare professionals in general practice fostered a positive change in evidence-based wound management, assessment and prevention.
RELEVANCE TO CLINICAL PRACTICE:
The Champions for Skin Integrity model has supported increases in evidence-based practices in treatment and management of wounds in primary healthcare professionals, similar to the positive outcomes gained in the aged care setting. This is likely to lead to positive outcomes for those with wounds in this setting.