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Patient involvement in care and decision-making has become an increasing focus in recent years, with the governmental shift to personalisation (1). Pressure ulcers (PUs) remain a key priority for healthcare providers with risk assessment and subsequent preventive measures seen as central to prevention. However, little is known about the involvement of the patient in the PU risk assessment and decision-making process particulary in community settings. It is important to understand further patient involvement and the potential effect this may have on subsequent adherence to prevention strategies. Much of the research to date has largely focused on the professional view rather than the patient own perspective (2).The focus of this PhD research project was to investigate patient perceptions and understanding of risk and potential factors affecting adherence to advice.
Methods: An explorative, qualitative research design was chosen to focus on the patient perspective and understanding. An overall pragmatist approach was used to collect a range of data, including observations of interactions between district nurse and patient, follow up interviews with patients themselves and document analysis of the pressure ulcer leaflet. Purposeful sampling was used to obtain a mix of patients from different age, gender and ethnic groups, living in Birmingham community who were identified and known to the District Nursing Service as ‘at risk’ of PU with a total of 15 patients recruited to the study.
There were 4 key overarching themes to emerge from the study: Patient knowledge and understanding of risk, Patient related factors, The Nursing Encounter and Nursing Approach. These themes will be discussed more fully in the presentation session.
This study provides useful insights from a patient perspective around patient understanding of risk and the importance of involvement in decision-making and adherence related factors. Equally, the way in which educational information is provided, which may have implications for HCP’s working in the field.