Journal Articles

National audit of pressure ulcer prevalence in England: a cross sectional study

Share this article

National audit of pressure ulcer prevalence in England: a cross sectional study

Grace Parfitt, Jacqui Fletcher, John Stephenson, Karen Ousey
5 November 2021

Patients continue to develop skin damage and pressure ulcers (PUs). The aim of this audit was to explore the prevalence of PUs and the adherence to the fundamental elements of the aSSKINg framework across hospitals in England. A cross-sectional survey was conducted on 10,144 patients from 36 hospitals representing 18 NHS trusts. The PU status of all patients was determined by two independent nurses who assessed the skin and ensured data capture was completed. The overall prevalence of PUs recorded, in terms or proportion of patients with 1 or more PUs, was 9.04% (95% confidence interval (CI) 8.48% to 9.60%). There were 689 (64.0%) PU allocated a category (i.e., 1,2,3,4, unstageable (US) or deep tissue injury (DTI)) were superficial, involving only the skin (categories 1 and 2). A further 218 (20.3%) were in an evolving category, i.e. US or DTI. There were 7086 patients (69.8%) that had a risk assessment completed within six hours, 6576 (81.4%) patients considered to be at risk had a care plan in place, but only 5216 patients (51.3%) had a planned repositioning regimen in place. This audit has identified areas of care that require improvement to prevent PU occurrence, including patient education and keeping patients moving and repositioning. There continues to be over-prescription of equipment, with patients being allocated higher specification equipment than their risk score identifies and no clinical reason apparent.

Free for all healthcare professionals

Sign up to the Wounds Group journals

By clicking ‘Subscribe’, you are agreeing that the Wounds Group are able to email you periodic newsletters. You may unsubscribe from these at any time. Your info is safe with us and we will never sell or trade your details. For information please review our privacy policy.

Are you a healthcare professional? This website is for healthcare professionals only. To continue, please confirm that you are a healthcare professional below.

We use cookies responsibly to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your browser settings, we’ll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies on this website. Read about how we use cookies.

I am not a healthcare professional.