The development of a chronic wound strategy for County Health South Australia.

Fiona Murray

1Country Health South Australia 22 King William Street SA 5000. fiona.murray@health.sa.gov.au

Chronic wounds represent a silent epidemic which places a considerable drain on healthcare resources. Graves and Zheng 2014 have estimated the cost to the Australian health system to be $2.85 billion, for South Australia the estimate was $45 million dollars1

Background

Country Health South Australia invested in a fleet of Negative Pressure Wound Therapy Devices to improve access to clients to this therapy. During the planned roll out of the fleet of devices it became evident that CHSA did not have a strategic approach to wound care. Wound care was dependent upon local expertise; documentation; the use of photographs and wound classification systems was inconsistent across the organisation. In order to address some of these issues a number of projects were initiated to develop a wound care strategy for CHSA.

Projects initiated

Wound care forms for use by all health settings and disciplines.

The development of a group of expert wound clinicians

A NPWT service .

Implementation of 1 wound classification system

A set outcome measures including objective measures of the wound using a state of the art wound surveillance system – The Silhouette ® System by Aranz Medical and quality of life measures such as the Cardiff Wound Impact Schedule (CWIS).

Discussion

Utilising a strategic approach to wound care we hope to demonstrate.

  • Improved quality of care by providing access to appropriate and early intervention;
  • Facilitating access to equitable access to high level wound care therapies
  • Reduction in the number and frequency and cost of dressing changes
  • Improved healing times

Biography

Originally from the UK I moved to South Australia in 2012 to take up the post of Advanced Clinical Lead Podiatrist for Country Health South Australia (CHSA).  Since qualifying in 1988 I have worked in many different clinical settings covering the whole scope of podiatry practice. I have published and presented on different aspects of the Diabetic Foot, wound healing and patient psychology.Since my move to CHSA I have focused on driving consistency in clinical care and the introduction of objective measures for clinical care to improve quality of care for people in Country South Australia.