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Quality: Hospital-Based Complications

Last Updated 3/21/2013 2:04:51 PM


Patient Falls

Hospitals do everything they can to prevent patients falls. At El Camino Hospital, we take several precautions to prevent patient falls. Our nurses visit at-risk patients frequently, making sure they have everything they need at the bedside. They escort patients to the restroom.

In the National Patient Safety Goals for 2007, The Joint Commission (2007) emphasized the need to reduce the risk of patient injuries from falls. Patient falls, defined as the rate at which patients fall during their hospital stays per 1,000 patient days, are a nursing-sensitive quality indicator in the delivery of inpatient services.

El Camino Hospital contributes information on our patient falls to the National Database of Nursing Quality Indicators (NDNQI) and the Collaborative Alliance for Nursing Outcomes (CALNOC) and uses benchmarks from these registries to help us set goals for improvement.

 
El Camino
Hospital
Oct-Dec 2012
Goal

Patient falls per 1,000 patient days
(lower is better)

1.4

1.9

 

 

Pressure Ulcers

A pressure ulcer is an injury usually caused by unrelieved pressure that damages the skin and underlying tissue. Pressure ulcers are also called decubitus ulcers or bed sores and range in severity from mild (minor skin reddening) to severe (deep craters down to muscle and bone).

Unrelieved pressure on the skin squeezes tiny blood vessels, which supply the skin with nutrients and oxygen. When skin is starved of nutrients and oxygen for too long, the tissue dies and a pressure ulcer forms. The affected area may feel warmer than surrounding tissue. Skin reddening that disappears after pressure is removed is normal and not a pressure ulcer.

Other factors cause pressure ulcers, too. If a person slides down in the bed or chair, blood vessels can stretch or bend and cause pressure ulcers. Even slight rubbing or friction on the skin may cause minor pressure ulcers.

 

El Camino Hospital
Oct-Dec 2012

Goal

Percent Hospital-acquired pressure ulcers
(1 day prevalence) (lower is better)

2.7%

2.5%