Appointing Champions in Pressure Ulcer Prevention

What do we mean by 'Champions in Pressure Ulcer Prevention'?

Champions in Pressure Ulcer Management (CiPUP) are specially trained senior staff who have been selected to develop their knowledge in this area. We aim to provide a lead person in each care package who can advise their teams on correct pressure ulcer prevention techniques to prevent them from developing and manage a category one pressure ulcer if it arises. Our objective, of course, is to prevent them from occurring in the first place.

Pressure ulcers, or pressure sores as they are also known, can develop in any person of any age for various reasons. However, they usually develop when the person may be unable to change their position after 20 minutes or more, e.g., following injury, surgery, spinal damage, stroke, unconsciousness, advanced dementia or neuromuscular conditions.

Why appoint CPUP's?

Aster Care supports people on a one-to-one basis for anything up to 24 hours a day because they have intensive needs and cannot be left alone at any time. Many of our service users are immobile, and whether they can communicate with us or not, they can be highly susceptible to sores developing from unrelieved pressure.  By having staff trained to identify and treat these sores at the earliest intervention, we aim to prevent further deterioration and suffering.

What is the scope of their training?

Identifying this need within our service, the Operations Director began searching for appropriate training and was quite surprised that there was little on offer in the local area. Unfortunately, what was available did not meet the purpose of what we were trying to achieve, i.e., it was too basic or pitched too high. After some detailed research, we opted for an online course which covered off the following areas:-
It seemed perfect! Our staff did not need to know how to manage category 2, 3 and 4 pressure ulcers, as these would always be managed by district nurses. Our aim is to STOP them getting beyond category 1. The Operations Director sat the course and found it went way deeper than the five modules appeared to suggest. The modules were intense and comprehensive, using the very latest research to cover every relevant aspect to give the highest standard of care at this level. An end-point assessment and a certificate ensures the information is understood, and the care worker can demonstrate their completion and understanding of the subject.

Moving forwards with pressure ulcer prevention...

The appointment of these Champions has meant that so far, we are largely preventing pressure sores. The CPUP’s are more readily able to differentiate between a sore caused by incontinence and those caused by pressure. Due to this, they can intervene with the appropriate course of action at a much earlier time and often prevent the need for a district nurse to become involved, saving their time and precious resource.