WIGAN Infirmary is the first hospital in the UK to trial new technology designed to prevent bed sores.
And as a result it has achieved the distinction of having zero hospital-acquired bed sores in the last three months.
As well as the medical benefits of the state-of-the-art sensor, analysis carried out by the hospital shows savings of up to £50,000 per month has been saved by avoiding treatment for the ulcers.
The SEM Scanner, created by international medical technology company Bruin Biometrics, uses sensors for the early detection of tissue damage, allowing staff to prevent the problem before it worsens.
Lindsey Bullough, a nurse at Wigan Infirmary, said: “We are constantly seeking new ways to prevent pressure ulcers for better patient outcomes.
“The use of innovative technology in pressure ulcer detection, such as the SEM Scanner, provides us with additional insight to save avoidable patient suffering and costs of care.”
The new initiative has been developed following health chiefs’ calls to prevent pressure ulcers, which are a contributing factor to a £2.5bn annual wastage in the NHS.
Pressure ulcers, also known as bed sores, are a preventable condition caused when an area of skin is placed under pressure for a prolonged period of time.
They most commonly occur in people who suffer from health problems which make it difficult to move, meaning that the tissue is often put under continuous strain.
It is thought that just under half a million people in the UK will develop a pressure ulcer in any one year.
Bed sores also contribute towards community and hospital acquired infections such as MRSA and sepsis, and have now risen to the national health agenda for many countries across the world.
Wigan Infirmary will continue to use the SEM scanner on a wider scale to help eliminate pressure ulcers in patients across the borough.