Nurse-Led Initiative Improves Treatment of ARDS Patients, Organization Mourns Death of Nursing Scholar, and More Nursing News


ICU nurse visits bedside of ARDS patient with breathing mask during COVID-19 pandemic

A nurse-led study explores specific treatment-related strategies for preventing pressure injuries among patients with COVID-19 and ARDS. NANDA International mourns the death of nursing scholar Virginia K. Saba. Five books produced by the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing receive American Journal of Nursing Book of the Year Awards. A podcast focuses on frontline nurses during the COVID-19 era. Read on for this week’s nursing news and insights.

Nurse-led initiative improves treatment of ARDS patients

Many studies have reported on the development of pressure injuries among patients diagnosed with acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), but a new study based out of New Jersey is reportedly one of the first to explore specific treatment-related strategies for preventing pressure injuries.

The “Pressure Injury Outcomes of a Prone-Positioning Protocol in Patients with COVID and ARDS” study conducted by a multi-professional pronation team at Penn Medicine Princeton Health, Plainsboro, NJ, and led by Kari A. Mastro, PhD, RN, NEA-BC, evaluated the effectiveness of a multi-professional pronation team that included a certified wound and skin care nurse who focused on reducing the development of pressure injuries in patients diagnosed with COVID-19 and ARDS.

The certified wound and skin care nurse had direct supervision and oversight of all skin preparation procedures and trained the team to care for the patients’ skin. The development of healthcare-associated pressure injuries remains a significant complication of placing patients prone, and prolonged prone positioning for patients diagnosed with ARDS is associated with higher rates of new pressure injuries, specifically on the face, cheekbones, thorax, and over bony prominences.

“Throughout the pandemic, we’ve been honing our efforts to improve outcomes for patients with COVID-19,” said Mastro. “The results of our study underscore the value of having clinicians with specialized expertise work together to improve patient outcomes and could redefine the strategies used to prevent pressure injuries in this patient population.”

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Princeton Health formed a multi-professional team to ensure the safe transition of critically ill patients from supine to prone and avoid common complications such as pressure injury development, accidental extubations, and loss of intravenous catheters. Before placing a patient prone, the team worked through different techniques and created a refined, systematic, and smooth process, with step-by-step visual aids.

The research team evaluated retrospective data from the health system’s electronic health record for a seven-month period. The intervention group was treated by a team that included a certified wound and skin care nurse, while the comparison group was treated by a prone-positioning team that used the National Pressure Injury Advisory Panel’s prone guidelines but did not include a certified wound and skin care nurse leading the pressure injury prevention strategies.

A total of 130 patients met the inclusion criteria for the cross-sectional analysis, 40% of whom were in the intervention group. Significantly fewer patients in the intervention group had pressure injuries develop (8% compared with 60% in the comparison group).

Further analysis and adjustment for relevant factors revealed that patients in the intervention group had a 97% lower adjusted odds ratio of pressure injury developing than those in the comparison group.

More details on the study are available online.

Related: Communication and Team Building: A Patient Safety Consideration

Organization mourns death of distinguished nursing scholar

NANDA International, an organization that provides leading evidence-based nursing diagnoses for use in practice and to determine interventions and outcomes, is mourning the death of Virginia K. Saba, EdD, RN, FACMI, FAAN. An adjunct distinguished scholar at Georgetown University, Saba passed away this winter.

During her career, Saba served as a Nurse Officer with the United States Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, providing national leadership and promoting technology in nursing practice. She served in academia, receiving the Distinguished Scholar Title from Georgetown University in 1997, where she integrated nursing technology in the school of nursing programs, facilities, and where she conducted federally funded research.

Sigma Theta Tau celebrates “Book of the Year” awards

Five books produced by the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing are being recognized by the American Journal of Nursing for the annual Book of the Year Awards.

  • Delivering Quality Healthcare for People With Disability by Suzanne C. Smeltzer received first place in the History and Public Policy category. Reviewer Patricia D’Antonio, PhD, RN, FAAN, noted that Smeltzer’s book “is one of the first books to systematically address how to care for individuals with disability in ways that respect and, indeed, honor their abilities” that contains “decades of wisdom, research, and practice” in accessible and readable chapters.
  • Self-Care for New and Student Nurses by Dorrie K. Fontaine, Tim Cunningham, and Natalie B. May, presents techniques to prepare for work-related stressors received second place in the Nursing Education/Continuing Education/Professional Development category. Reviewer Kathryn B. Keller, PhD, RN, CNE, said: “This book and its accompanying workbook can be used throughout the undergraduate nursing student’s academic experience and during the transition to practice, helping to build resiliency and offering invaluable insight and support during this stressful time.”
  • Johns Hopkins Evidence-Based Practice for Nurses and Healthcare Professionals: Model & Guidelines, Fourth Edition by Deborah Dang, Sandra L. Dearholt, Kim Bissett, Judith Ascenzi, and Madeleine Whalen received a third place in the Nursing Education/Continuing Education/Professional Development category. Reviewer Kathryn B. Keller noted that it is useful for both practice and academic settings and “offers a clear approach to developing a culture of evidence-based practice.”
  • High Reliability Organizations: A Healthcare Handbook for Patient Safety & Quality, Second Edition, by Cynthia A. Oster and Jane S. Braaten was awarded second place in the Professional Issues category. “It is easy to see this book as a valuable go-to resource for organizations in many areas of healthcare,” said reviewer Jackie Owens, PhD, RN, CNE. “Readers will gain understanding of what drives safety and quality as well as the critical factors affecting organizational culture and ongoing commitment to high reliability.”
  • Improving Nurse Retention & Healthcare Outcomes: Innovating With the IMPACT Model by Judy Thomas and Mellisa Renter helps clinical nurses understand how to elevate their practice as frontline care providers and give executives a new strategic approach to nurse retention. It received third place in the Professional Issues category. Reviewer Jackie Owens, PhD, RN, CNE, noted that “Any healthcare discipline struggling with retention of professional caregivers could apply the framework described.”

The books can be purchased online.

Related: Leadership and Nursing Practice Specialty CE Courses

Podcast Spotlight: Frontline Nursing

The Frontline Nursing podcast series, hosted by Rayna Letourneau, PhD, RN, focuses on frontline nurses during the COVID-19 era. Each month, episodes provide the tools that nurses need to navigate the challenges they face during a pandemic, including the state of the science, self-care, and other critical topics.

Discussions on relevant and timely topics provide nurses with additional tools to lead the frontlines during this pandemic and in the future. Recent episodes include “Excellence in Nursing During COVID-19 and Beyond,” “Redeployment to the Bedside: A Nurse Educator’s Experience,” and “Has the Pandemic Impacted our Future Nurses?”

The podcast can be accessed on Spotify and Apple Podcasts.

Views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of Elite Learning or Colibri Group. Media referenced in this news round-up does not constitute an endorsement.

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