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Keywords

blended model, chronic wounds, COVID-19, interprofessional team, patient navigation, project ECHO, wound healing

 

Authors

  1. Arputhanathan, Helen MSc Wound Care (Australia), BScN, RN, IIWCC, NSWOC
  2. Hyde, Jane BScN, RN, IIWCC, NSWOC, WOCC(C)
  3. Atilola, Temidayo MCISc, RN, NSWOC
  4. Queen, Douglas PhD, MBA, BSc
  5. Elliott, James MMSc
  6. Sibbald, R. Gary MD, MEd, BSc, DSC (Hon), FRCPC (Med, Derm), FAAD, MAPWCA

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To create a blended format model to navigate interprofessional team assessments of patients with complex wounds during COVID-19 as a quality improvement process.

 

METHODS: During clinical assessments, patients were interviewed in their homes with representation from their circle of care and primary nurse on site linked to a live virtual interprofessional blended remote team model (wound care nurse specialist, advanced wound care doctor). Eligible patients had completed a wound care clinical pathway without wound closure. Palliative patients with complex wounds and patients without precise/accurate diagnoses were also included. This process addressed the components of Wound Bed Preparation 2021: manage the cause, address patient-centered concerns, determine the ability to heal, optimize local wound care, and evaluate outcomes on an ongoing basis.

 

RESULTS: Since April 2020, 48 patients were referred to the Home and Community Care Support Services patient navigation interprofessional team. Patients' home-care services were initiated between 2012 and 2021. The team provided closure in 29% of patients and the wound surface area reduced in 66%. Pain was reduced in 73% of patients and appropriate infection management was implemented in 79%. In addition, nursing visits were reduced by 73% and there was a 77% decrease in supply usage.

 

CONCLUSIONS: This project validated the Wound Bed Preparation Paradigm 2021 as a process for assessing patients with complex wounds using a blended virtual and home-based assessment. Patient navigation with this blended model benefited patients and improved healthcare system utilization with projected cost savings.