Hospital Acquired Pressure Injuries: Potential Prevention with the SimPull Device

May 23, 2024

for clinicians

Hospital acquired pressure injuries can occur from a variety of causes during a patient’s hospital stay, or a combination of these. One commonly cited cause is the patient transfer process. Patient transfers can subject patients to prolonged pressure, friction, and shear forces, predisposing them to pressure injuries.

Hospital Acquired Pressure Injuries
Hospital Acquired Pressure Injuries
Hospital Acquired Pressure Injuries

Hospital acquired pressure injuries can occur from a variety of causes during a patient’s hospital stay, or a combination of these. One commonly cited cause is the patient transfer process. Patient transfers can subject patients to prolonged pressure, friction, and shear forces, predisposing them to pressure injuries. These injuries not only cause pain and discomfort but also lead to extended hospital stays, increased healthcare costs, and potential complications. 

Many forms of patient transfer, from staff-executed lifts to the use of patient transfer devices, leave the door open to hospital acquired pressure injuries. The following risks are associated with commonly used patient transfer devices and procedures: 

Friction and Shear:

During patient transfers, friction occurs when the skin rubs against surfaces such as bedsheets, clothing, or medical equipment. Additionally, shear forces may occur when patients are pulled or dragged across surfaces. Both friction and shear can damage the skin and underlying tissues, leading to pressure injuries.

Inadequate Support Surfaces:

Inappropriate or insufficient support surfaces, such as mattresses or cushions, can exacerbate pressure and increase the risk of hospital acquired pressure injuries during patient transfer. Patients may not receive adequate pressure redistribution, leading to injury. 

Poor Technique:

Improper transfer techniques, including rough handling, lifting from vulnerable areas, or failing to maintain proper alignment of the body, can contribute to pressure injuries. 

How the SimPull May Mitigate Risk of Hospital Acquired Patient Injuries 

The Patient Company aims to reduce the risk of a variety of common patient moving risks in myriad clinical settings with the SimPull — the first fully automated patient lateral transfer device — such as hospital acquired pressure injuries. Besides a number of other benefits to the clinical ecosystem, such as using eco-friendly reusable technology, enhancing patient dignity, and optimizing safe patient handling workflows, the SimPull also requires zero lifting and zero force.

Here’s how it works: 

  

  1. A clinical staff member removes the drawbar from the device and places it next to the patient. 
  2. The sheets that the patient is lying on are secured to the drawbar using the device’s loops. 
  3. The staff member moves the SimPull’s bumper against the bed that the patient is being transferred to, and engages the brake. 
  4. The SimPull begins the patient transfer process when the remote button is activated, during which a second staff member guides the head or the feet of the patient. 
  5. The patient transfer process is completed in a way that is safe for the patient and staff members, efficient, and timely. 

Ultimately, the process may reduce risk of hospital acquired pressure injuries by negating the need for staff to physically lift a patient, ensuring the patient is supported during the entire transfer process, and eliminating potential friction by using the same sheet that the patient is already on for the transfer. This results in increased patient comfort and satisfaction while reducing potential added time spent in the hospital caused by injury. 

The SimPull was designed to drastically improve medical facility systems, patient care, and staff safety. If you’d like to learn more about how it can enhance your clinical ecosystem, we’d love to have a conversation with you about it. 

Hospital Acquired Pressure Injuries
Hospital Acquired Pressure Injuries
Hospital Acquired Pressure Injuries