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From your deputy editor:

Focused education is a must. 

Although our Society produces state-of-the-science guidelines and evidence-based practice standards, the best educational models to keep WOC nurses and our nurse colleagues up-to-date on wound, ostomy and continence -related assessment and management issues remain elusive. In this issue, numerous authors demonstrate the critical need for lifelong learning through various approaches and provides thoughtful discussion on strategies to overcome educational barriers that continue to plague WOC nursing.  Take for example the study by Lia van Rijswiijk who proposes an innovative online, interactive wound assessment and care pathway "algorithm" model for registered nurses.  This study is one of the first to rigorously evaluate outcomes of online WOC education for nurses and includes an assessment of application to usefulness in clinical practice.  Online education in WOC nursing is mainstay. This study adds to a burgeoning body of research that suggests online WOC education is feasible; however the data from this study suggest there is a need for instructional design and additional testing to better inform how online education should be delivered to address gaps in nurses' wound care knowledge.  The need to identify barriers to wound care management is highly emphasized in several other articles in this issue, which again underscore the need for a strong educational paradigm. Cynthia Walker and colleagues studied barriers to wound care, noting that 72% of hospitalists in their study had no formal wound care training. Using the Pieper-Zulkowski Pressure Ulcer Knowledge Test, Fulbrook and colleagues studied pressure injury knowledge of nurses in a tertiary care general hospital and identified deficits in seating support and wound dressing where nurses would benefit from focused education strategies. Similar to Fulbrook, the study by Aydin and colleagues found that nurse knowledge and practices regarding pressure injuries were lower than anticipated in the sample of nurses attending a Wound Management Association in Turkey.

WOC Nurses are major contributors to CAUTI prevention 

Check out the article by Lawrence and colleagues regarding The CAUTI Prevention Toolkit. This toolkit and the supplemental guidance documents were developed with an esteemed panel of experts from nursing specialty groups, patient stakeholders and WOC nurses and Society members. Unfortunately each year more than 500,000 individuals continue to develop CAUTI, the most commonly reported hospital-acquired condition and according to the American Nurses Association, the rates continue to rise.  For additional informative CAUTI information, read the study by Jung In Park and colleagues[MOU1]  in which they present factors associated with healthcare-acquired CAUTI. One of the major factors associated with a reduction in CAUTI was the presence of more nurses with specialty nursing certifications. WOCN continues to influence major chronic conditions through our evidence-based practice and content expertise and in particular, allows you the WOC nurse to move forward our unique contributions to infection prevention.

Teresa Kelechi, PhD, RN, CWCN, FAAN

Deputy Editor

Computer-Assisted Wound Assessment and Care Education Program in Registered Nurses: Use of an Interactive Online Program by 418 Registered Nurses

van Rijswijk, Lia

Journal of Wound Ostomy & Continence Nursing. 46(2):90-97, March/April 2019.