Terms to Know: Wound Care Technologies

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Benchmarking: Benchmarking is using published wound outcomes reported by others as a framework within which to assess your facility’s outcomes and potential need for improved care.

Chronic wound: A chronic wound is a wound that has failed to progress towards healing in 30 days or more. There are varying factors that can cause a wound to stall, such as infection or a prolonged inflammatory phase. It is important to document the wound’s progress, any stalling factors, and interventions put into place to restart the healing cascade.

Digital wound measuring tool: Digital wound measuring tools include devices that may provide two- or three-dimensional assessment (length, width, depth, surface area) of a wound with electronic medical record software integration and may not require physical contact.

EMR: The electronic medical records (EMR) is a digital version of the paper charts in the clinician's office. An EMR contains the medical and treatment history of each patient in the practice.

HIPAA: HIPAA stands for Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, which was enacted in 1996. HIPAA compliance is adherence to the physical, administrative, and technical safeguards outlined in the act. Health care–related entities and businesses are required to uphold and protect the integrity of Protected Health Information (PHI).

Patient portal: A patient portal is an electronic access point for the patient to review their medical record and send secure messages to the clinicians providing their care.

PDGM: The Patient-Driven Groupings Model (PDGM) developed by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) was made effective January 1, 2020) for home health care. PDGM is a payment-based system that will help reduce the cost of home health care.

QAPI: The acronym for Quality Assurance and Performance Improvement. Part of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires that all skilled nursing centers develop QAPI programs, such as programs for tracking total number of wounds, types of wounds, and healing rates to show accountability. The intentions are to develop, implement, and maintain an effective, comprehensive, data-driven QAPI program that focuses on systems of care, outcomes of care, and quality of life.

Telewound care: Telewound care refers to remote wound assessment and treatment conducted through video calls between the patient and the clinician.
Workflow: A workflow is an organized and repeatable process for assessing a patient, planning and executing treatment, and documenting all care provided to the patient.

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