A 2020/2021 Summer Studentship research project
Supervisors: Associate Professor Philippa Seaton, Cathy Hammond (Wound Care Clinical Nurse Specialist, Nurse Maude Wound Care Service), Gill Coe (NZICHC Research Officer)
Compression bandaging is the gold standard treatment for venous leg ulcers. Compression wraps are a newer alternative for some appropriate patients. They are especially useful for people who need their legs dressed more frequently or for patients who would like to manage their own care. This can increase autonomy for patients, save them waiting for a District Nurse (DN) visit and increase the ownership of their care. It can also be a cost-effective alternative saving DN visits and the cost of consumables.
Residents living in nursing homes need to travel to the Wound Clinic to have compression applied as compression bandaging is a specialist task. If these people have access to compression wraps their nurses and carers can be taught application. This saves residents having to travel to a clinic and allows for the nursing team in the nursing home to care for the wounds and increase their expertise in leg ulcer management.
To determine the benefits and disadvantages of using compression wraps for a defined group of Wound Clinic patients.
For the patient:
- Improved involvement and autonomy of patients in their care
- Saving in time and potential cost for patients waiting for a DN to arrive.
- Patients don’t need to travel to a clinic to have dressings changed saving time, petrol costs, and taxi fares.
- Consistency in care
- Able to remove the compression wrap at night for comfort
For the nurse:
- Patients taking more responsibility for their care
- Reduce recurrent episodes of eczema
- Nursing home nurses having increased skill in the management of leg ulcers
- Improve the staffing levels in nursing homes if carers are not required as escorts for patients attending wound care clinics
For the organisation and health service:
- Major savings in cost of dressing consumables
- Major savings in cost of nursing visits
- Cost savings for nursing homes in taxi fares and carer escorts
Conduct a retrospective review of patients who have been having compression bandaging and then changed to compression wraps. This will be performed by using the patient notes. We will review 5 patients in the community setting and 5 patients in the nursing home setting. We will also have a questionnaire for the patients and for the nursing staff.
Student researcher’s component of the study
The student researcher would:
- Review patient notes, extract the required data, and examine the cost/benefits of compression wraps compared to compression bandaging.
- Help design a questionnaire with support from the Wound Care CNS, Research Institute team, and UOC supervisor.
- Conduct the questionnaire with the patients and nursing staff and collate the findings
- Write up the findings in a report for Nurse Maude and present findings at the Summer Studentship Day
- Contribute to publishing the findings.
Nursing or medical student