Background: Pressure injuries inflict a major, preventable burden onto hospital systems, healthcare providers, and patients. The purpose of this evidence based project was to evaluate the impact of a pressure injury prevention education program on nursing staff knowledge and pressure injury rates in an Arizona post-cardiac care unit.
Method: A single group pre-test post-test design was utilized to evaluate nursing staff knowledge before and after an education program on pressure injury prevention. Staff knowledge was evaluated using a modified version of the Pressure Ulcer Knowledge Assessment Tool 2.0. Participants completed pre- and post-education surveys. Rates of hospital acquired pressure injuries were obtained via chart review.
Results: Pre- and post-education scores were analyzed in participants who completed both surveys using a paired t-test. Post-education scores (M = 0.73, SD = 0.07) were significantly higher than pre-education scores (M = 0.59, SD = 0.09); t(7) = -5.39, p = .001. Pre- and post-education median scores of all participants were analyzed using two-tailed Mann-Whitney U test. Post-education scores (Mdn = 0.71) were significantly higher compared to pre-education scores (Mdn = 0.56); U = 102.5, z = -4.05, p = .001. Monthly incidence of pressure injuries on the unit increased following education.
Discussion: Increase in scores from pre- to post-education surveys indicate staff knowledge improved. The increased incidence of pressure injuries is thought to be secondary to staff’s increased ability to detect pressure injuries. Staff education is recommended, but more research is needed regarding the impact on pressure injury rates.