Widespread - Estimated prevalence of pressure injuries:
10% to 18% in acute care
2.3% to 28% in long-term care
0% to 29% in homecare
U.S. incidence 2.5 million people per year
Difficult - Very few clinically useful tools exist to assist with early pressure injury detection and prevention. The current standard of care implements various risk assessment scales (Braden, Cubbin and Jackson, Norton and Waterlow). However, these lack adequate specificity and sensitivity. There is no standardized or recommended early detection device for pressure injuries.
Costly - The Agency for Healthcare Research and quality estimates pressure injuries cost $9.1 to $11.6 billion per year in the U.S. Individual patient care costs range from $20,900 to $151,700 per pressure injury. A hospital stay involving a pressure injury can result in additional charges up to $700,000. Medicare provides no reimbursement for cases that progress to Stage III or IV if physicians fail to document upon admission existing pressure injuries or patients at risk. More than 17,000 related lawsuits are filed annually, with an average cost of $250,000.
Deadly - Complications arising from pressure injuries result in an estimated 60,000 deaths annually in the U.S. Patients with pressure injuries have significantly higher mortality rates than those without, 9.1% compared to 1.8%. The odds of any patient dying in the hospital are 2.8 times higher for patients with pressure injuries.