Alison Hopkins & Nikki Stubbs – The importance of benchmarking and its relevance to delivering a complex wound programme
A survey of care of people with complex wounds was undertaken across all healthcare providers in Leeds in March 2011 as part of a larger research programme. The objective of the survey was to investigate the number, nature and care of all complex wounds in Leeds.
For the purpose of this survey we defined complex wounds as ‘those involving superficial, partial or full thickness skin loss, which are healing by secondary intention and which may have an underlying cause or occur in patients where underlying disease may impact upon healing’.
The primary objective of the survey was to estimate the point prevalence of all complex wounds by type i.e., leg ulcers, pressure ulcers, foot ulcers and dehisced surgical wounds.
Anonymised individual patient data were recorded by healthcare professionals with one form completed for every person with a complex wound receiving care.
In total, 1103 people with at least one complex wound (who had a total of 1498 wounds) were identified from a population of 751,485; a point prevalence of 1.47 per 1000 people (95% CI 1.38 to 1.56 per 1000). The most prevalent wound types were presented in 2012 at the Tissue Viability conference and we have been invited back to present the results of more detailed data analysis which will include the prevalence of complex wounds within the intravenous drug user population and the collective impact of ‘other’ complex wounds.