PU/PI: Pressure Ulcers/Pressure Injuries

Why We Want to Prevent Pressure Ulcers/Injuries

Pressure ulcers are wounds caused by constant pressure on the skin creating lack of blood flow to that area.

The term “pressure injury” has now replaced “pressure ulcer” in the National Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel Pressure Injury Staging System. According to the Advisory Panel, the change in terminology more accurately describes pressure injuries to both intact and ulcerated skin.

Pressure injuries occur most often on the elbow, shoulder, back, hip and back of the head. Pressure injuries lead to increased lengths of hospital stays and higher costs for hospitals and affect more than 2.5 million people in the United States every year. Pressure injuries lead to increased risk of infection and are typically seen in high-risk populations such as the elderly or immobile patients and can interfere with a patient’s recovery because they develop quickly and are difficult to treat. The cost to treat pressure injuries is estimated between $9 billion and $11 billion.

Success Within New Jersey Hospitals

Compared to baseline, New Jersey's hospitals have reduced PU/PIs by 38 percent, avoided 851 potential PU/PIs and saved $34,482,049 in unnecessary healthcare costs.

This was accomplished in part through hospital participation in collaborative efforts:

The NJHA Pressure Ulcer Collaborative