The Department of Health and Social Care have published today (16th January 2024) guidance with the aim of assisting practitioners and managers across health and care organisations to provide caring, speedy and appropriate responses to individuals at risk of developing pressure ulcers.
Where pressure ulcers do occur, this guidance offers a clear process for the clinical management of the removal and reduction of harm to the individual, while considering if an adult safeguarding response under section 42 of the Care Act 2014 is necessary.
If the staff member is concerned that the pressure ulcer may have arisen as a result of poor practice, neglect or abuse, or an act of omission, local guidance should be clear about what steps they need to take and whether the local authority safeguarding duties are triggered.
These documents help practitioners and managers across health and care organisations to provide caring and quick responses to people at risk of developing pressure ulcers.
The guidance and appendices also offer a process for the clinical management of harm removal and reduction where ulcers occur, considering if an adult safeguarding response is necessary.
Pressure ulcers, which are largely preventable, cause distress to individuals and their families and create financial pressures for the NHS. While the treatment of pressure ulcers is mainly clinical, prevention is a shared responsibility.