OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to assess the cost savings associated with implementing nursing approaches to prevent hospital-acquired pressure ulcers (HAPU).
BACKGROUND: Hospitals face substantial costs associated with the treatment of HAPUs. Interventions have been demonstrated as effective for HAPU prevention and management, but it is widely perceived that preventative measures are expensive and, thus, may not be a good use of resources.
METHODS: A return-on-investment (ROI) framework from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) Quality Indicators Toolkit was used for this study. The researchers identified achievable improvements in HAPU rates from data from the Collaborative Alliance for Nursing Outcomes and measured costs and savings associated with HAPU reduction from published literature.
RESULTS: The analysis produced a baseline ROI ratio of 1.61 and net savings of $127.51 per patient.
CONCLUSIONS: Hospital-acquired pressure ulcer surveillance and prevention can be cost saving for hospitals and should be considered by nurse executives as a strategy to support quality outcomes.