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An Estimate Of The Potential Budget Impact Of Using Prophylactic Dressings To Prevent Hospital-acquired PUs In Australia.

N. Santamaria, H. Santamaria
Published 2014 · Medicine

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OBJECTIVE To estimate the potential cost saving to the Australian health-care system of introducing the use of prophylactic dressings to prevent hospital-acquired pressure ulcers (PUs) for patients with a high-risk developing a PU. METHOD We estimated the costs of pressure ulceration based on conservative estimates of an incidence rate of 13% within 10% of the total admitted Australian patient population. RESULTS from a recent large randomised control trial of prophylactic dressing used to prevent PUs in high-risk patients were then extrapolated to this population to derive a potential national cost/benefit calculation. RESULTS Our estimate revealed that within the high-risk population of acute hospitals, more than 71,000 patients could be expected to develop a PU annually costing AU$77,800,000 (£43,000,000). Whereas by implementing a national PU prevention initiative based on the use of prophylactic multilayer silicone foam dressings for high-risk patients, an annual saving of AU$34,800,000 (£19,700,000) could be achieved, which represents a cost benefit of 55% to the Australian health-care system. CONCLUSION Our estimate of the potential cost benefit of implementing the use of prophylactic dressings to prevent hospital acquired PUs in high-risk patients uses conservative estimates of both the incidence rates of ulceration and of treatment costs. However, this is also based on one of the largest reported randomised control trials of this technique to prevent PUs. We believe that our modelling is robust yet requires replication in other countries with different health-care systems and costing structures.
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