Nova Scotia still lacks policy to combat pressure sores in nursing homes

Click to play video: 'Initiatives to address bed sores still underway after death of Nova Scotia woman' Initiatives to address bed sores still underway after death of Nova Scotia woman
WATCH: When a Nova Scotia woman died as a result of an advanced pressure injury last spring both the province and police launched an investigation. Neither have been completed yet, but Alexa MacLean has more on what’s been done to address the high number of bed sores in the province’s nursing homes – Sep 19, 2018

The province still doesn’t have a provincial policy in place for the treatment and management of pressure sores, even though it committed to doing so earlier this year.

“[It’s] still the intention, the work that we started with as we’re pulling that together, is the educational information,” Nova Scotia Health Minister, Randy Delorey said on Wednesday.

READ MORE: 152 cases of severe bedsores found in N.S. long-term care facilities, now the province is taking action

The provincial government launched an investigation into the treatment of pressure injuries throughout nursing homes in Nova Scotia after Chrissy Dunnington, 40, died this past spring.

With the investigation came several targets Delorey committed to achieving several targets along with the investigation.

They included publicly posting reports on nursing home inspections and pressure injuries online by the end of this summer.

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That hasn’t happened yet.

“That work is well underway. Part of the process before posting online is to ensure that the information is validated appropriately,” Delorey said.

According to Delorey, the province has followed through on its plan to bring wound-care experts to long-term care facilities where residents are living with advanced stage pressure injuries.

“They went out to help assess, provide training information. We made the information material available to all our long-term care facilities. It’s information that’s been vetted by clinical experts,” Delorey said.

WATCH: Halifax police probe death at long-term care facility

Click to play video: 'Halifax police probe death at long-term care facility' Halifax police probe death at long-term care facility
Halifax police probe death at long-term care facility – Jun 15, 2018

Delorey says he also visited “a number of nursing home facilities” this summer to assess how the new pressure injury initiatives were being received.

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According to him, all is well.

“I spoke to staff and administration within the sites to hear from them directly their thoughts on how the initiative was received and it’s been very well received,” he said.

NS NDP leader, Gary Burrill, feels Nova Scotia needs to raise its standards around pressure injuries to align with those of other provinces.

“In Ontario, the incidence rate for bedsores is 2.7 per cent and this is such a concern for them they have a program to get it down to one per cent, which they’ve established as a benchmark. In Nova Scotia, our incidence rate is almost three times, seven per cent and we have no benchmark,” he said.

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