According to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, more than 17,000 lawsuits related to pressure injuries are filed annually in the United States, second only to wrongful death lawsuits.
Being sued creates significant discomfort for all involved, including caregiver and employer. Irrespective of the time, resource and financial implications, there is a significant personal toll. Who likes their ability, credibility and caring nature to be questioned? Fairly or unfairly, it’s not a pleasant experience, when challenged by a lawyer, some of whom make a living “chasing wounds”.
That’s where Swift’s WoundProof Program comes in. Healthcare facilities that adopt Swift Skin and Wound technology will have a system to collect and manage the proper documentation of skin and wound evaluations. When used as intended Swift Skin and Wound will help ensure you are always in compliance with clinical regulations and best practices.
The clinical data and reports contained within Swift have already been used successfully many times to ward off claims and litigation. The Swift WoundProof Program protects healthcare organizations through five key components:
- Help eliminate avoidable in-house acquired pressure injuries
- Standardized best practice management of non-avoidable in-house acquired pressure injuries
- Workflows that ensure comprehensive, complete, and admissible documentation of all wounds and skin assessments
- Court-ready fast and easy export of all relevant documentation
- Quality Assurance Monitoring and exposure reports which provide checks to ensure your team is meeting legal requirements
1. Enabling Best Practice Prevention and Care
Routine skin assessments conducted at the point of care using Swift Skin and Wound help to identify skin at risk of developing pressure injuries. This data is available through the Swift dashboards, giving you visibility to risk across your entire patient population. This gives you the ability to address high-risk patients with priority and ensure avoidable pressure injury are eliminated at your organization.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) have acknowledged that some pressure injuries are unavoidable, which means they can occur despite receiving the best care possible. However, it’s up to the facility to prove they did everything they were supposed to, and despite that, the patient developed that pressure injury.
When you identify an unavoidable pressure injury your responsibility moves from avoidance to management. The fact that it is unavoidable does not obviate the need for best practice. Indeed your responsibility of delivering best practice becomes even more important, ensuring the best care for your patient and their pressure injury.
The Swift Skin and Wound app can deliver best practices to the clinician at the point of care, and ensure that all relevant information about the wound is correctly collected in order to make informed decisions around treatments. In facilities where specialized wound care resources are limited, having centralized wound images and data in a secure online dashboard means specialists can provide recommendations quickly, and from anywhere.
As a Director of Nursing, it’s important that you have oversight into all wounds at your facility in order to provide the standard of care required to avoid litigation. The Swift Wound Dashboard gives you the visibility into all wounds in your patient population. It can be filtered by location, wound type and when they were acquired. You can quickly see which wounds are deteriorating and which are improving. This allows you to direct limited wound care resources to those that need it the most.
2. Workflows that ensure comprehensive, complete, and admissible documentation of all wounds and skin assessments
Digital wound management provides an all-in-one-system that captures, documents and reports the necessary wound-related data required for the prevention and treatment of pressure injuries. Through intelligent workflow, the technology provides comprehensive and complete documentation for the patient.
Swift Skin and Wound has been designed with the clinician in mind, and we understand that our solution needs to match the workflow at the bedside. With that in mind, we’ve created configurable workflows that match the way nurses work at your facility. You can make certain items required during the image capture at the point of care. Eg. Making a note of the location of the wound. Then you can have other fields that can be filled out later so that the bedside visit can be kept efficient and moving quickly. The Swift Dashboards show if evaluations are not complete so that you can follow up with staff until everything is complete.
3. The evidence you need to prove your high quality of care
One of the biggest pain points when it comes to litigation is the collection of documentation needed for the court case. With the best practices in prevention and care in place, your healthcare facility will most likely avoid litigation altogether. However, if your facility does come under the microscope in court, all the patient level documentation can be easily retrieved from Swift Skin and Wound.
It’s as easy as selecting the patient, and picking the date range of the documentation that you want to pull and with a click of the button, it’s all exported into PDFs which can be printed and admissible in court.
What can take days for your already overworked clinical staff to dig out, copy and assemble can be done within minutes.
4. Quality Assurance Monitoring
Ongoing wound care quality assurance monitoring is important to drive change, improve quality and mitigate risk (both financial/legal). Swift Quality Assurance Monitoring (QA Monitoring) is a service where experienced, US-based, certified wound care nurses methodically audit and then report on your wound care documentation.
Swift QA Monitoring addresses:
- Assure that your team is documenting wound care appropriately (and caring for wounds appropriately)
- Help your wound care team remediate documentation issues
- Reduce regulatory exposure (risk of fines) and the potential for wound-related litigation
Swift QA Monitoring provides:
Score-card reports highlight opportunity for improvements, guide training and provide true insight into your care settings and practice.
Want to see how Swift’s WoundProof can help to protect your healthcare organization? Book a demo today.