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Wound Care: Educate, educate, educate

Wound Care: Educate, educate, educate

Jodi RohlwingHettichQ. How can I create a successful wound care program?
A. Wound care is expected to grow by up to 5.3% in the next few years, with the trend toward “hospital at home.” Is your HME company ready to meet the demand? Offering wound care dressings can differentiate your company from others; however, to implement a successful wound care program, it all starts with education.  

Educate your staff
It is important for your staff to be able to identify the various categories of dressings and wound types, including skin tears, pressure injuries and ulcers. Your staff does not need to understand all the clinical aspects of wound care but should have a general knowledge of wounds and appropriate dressings. If you bill Part B, provide your staff with education on the coverage guidelines and the billing codes associated with surgical dressings. Many manufacturers offer online education in general wound care and skin health.  

Educate your referrals
Be a trusted resource to your referral sources on wound care and proper documentation. Insufficient documentation on surgical dressings has a CERT error rate of 81%. Work with your referral sources so they understand the required documentation necessary for surgical dressings reimbursement. There are several e-script platforms available that can help decrease incomplete documentation, assist your organization with streamlining processes and reduce the delay of patient care.  

Educate the patient and/or caregiver
On average, only 35% of patients and caregivers at home understood how to manage their wound care needs, according to one study. Provide handouts with tips on wound management that include how to reduce risk of infection, how to change a dressing and how a proper diet can support healing. An educated patient and/or caregiver is more engaged in their health care outcomes and has a higher rate of healing.

Jodi RohlwingHettich is vice president, business development at DermaRite Industries, LLC. Reach her at or 847-651-3585.


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