To evaluate a community-based educational intervention to improve wound-care practice, and thereby reduce the costs of care, in four communities in Denmark.
Annual wound care audits recorded patients' ages, the number and types of wounds being treated, wound duration (days unhealed), frequency of dressing changes and nurse time per dressing change. Data were available at year 1 and year 3 post-intervention. A statistical analysis was performed, testing for changes in a range of variables between these years.
In the post-intervention period, significant reductions were found in the proportion of chronic wounds, the proportion of wounds requiring a daily dressing change, mean frequency of dressing change, mean nurse time spent in wound care per week, and the total cost of wound care per week.
These results suggest that it is possible to improve wound-care practice and reduce the resource costs of wound care through a systematic programme of education and training, tailored to suit the needs of local communities.