According to the Tissue Viability Team in the University’s School of Nursing and Midwifery, around 200,000 individuals in the UK will have a chronic wound at any one time, with, for example one in five hospitalised patients developing pressure ulcers.
In addition to the pain and suffering caused by these non healing wounds the financial costs of their management are high for both the NHS and the patient. Non healing wounds frequently result in patients requiring extended hospital stays increasing their risk of complications such as infections.
In response to this issue, Julie Vuolo, a lecturer at the School joined forces with Tina Moore, a third year Model Design student to develop a three dimensional model of a man called George, complete with a pressure ulcer, a surgical incision which can be removed to reveal a large abdominal wound and a removable fungating tumour.
The model was developed as part of the CABLE project (an HEA funded Pathfinder project involving eleven academic Schools within the University of Hertfordshire).
Traditionally wound care has been taught to students through high-quality photographs and video. Now, George can be used to facilitate discussion about a whole range of tissue viability issues including wound measurement, pressure ulcer grading, dressing application, and wound bed preparation. He can also be used to trigger reflective discussion about difficult cases seen in clinical practice, so that wound care students can learn how to assess and manage wounds.
“The fact that George was designed by wound care experts with specific wound care learning outcomes in mind means he far exceeds the standard achieved by existing models on the market,” said Julie Vuolo. “But the real success of George can be attributed to the need of many nurses to be actively engaged in the learning process. To this end George brings tissue viability alive in a way that the even the best of photographs could never do. “
Helene Murphy | alfa
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