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New York Initiative Aims to Reduce Pressure Ulcers

Monday January 24, 2011
Gold STAMP Regional Program presenters, from left, Evelyn S. Alcontin, RN; Merlita Mateo, RN; and Jacqueline Juele-Schuster, RN, share their pressure ulcer prevention success story.
Gold STAMP Regional Program presenters, from left, Evelyn S. Alcontin, RN; Merlita Mateo, RN; and Jacqueline Juele-Schuster, RN, share their pressure ulcer prevention success story.
(Photo by Tracey Boyd)
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The New York State Gold STAMP Regional Program to Reduce Pressure Ulcers is a statewide initiative designed to bring together healthcare professionals to discuss best practices to eliminate pressure ulcers. Hosted by the Healthcare Association of New York State and chaired by the New York State Department of Health, organizers held a regional conference in December at NewYork-Presbyterian Westchester in White Plains.

Addressing the crowd of healthcare professionals, Jackie Pappalardi, director of residential services with the New York State Department of Health Office of Long-Term Care, provided an overview of the Gold Success Through Assessment, Management and Prevention program. The initiative is a coalition of organizations that meet regionally to provide evidence-based resources and education, promote collaboration and communication, give strategic direction and support for performance measurement and ensure care transition.

“We’re looking for sustainable change,” Pappalardi said. “This is a priority for you at the local, state and federal levels. It’s a shared responsibility. We own the problem; we need to share in fixing it.”

To help meet its goals, the coalition created an organizational self-assessment tool and an electronic resource guide for healthcare professionals that were used in pressure ulcer pilot studies in healthcare facilities statewide. Each daylong regional conference allows attendees to hear from those who have collaborated and to learn from their best practices.

Evelyn S. Alcontin, RN, MA, APRN-BC, NP-C, CWOCN, a wound care nurse practitioner from Mount Sinai Hospital Queens, and Merlita Mateo, RN, BSN, WCC, and Jacqueline Juele-Schuster, RN, MS, NP-BC, WCC, CWS, both of New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation’s Coler-Goldwater Specialty Hospital and Nursing Facility on Roosevelt Island, spoke about their successful partnership and how they involved all disciplines in pressure ulcer awareness. Mateo and Juele-Schuster began with the formation of a pressure ulcer task force, then went on grand rounds at other HHC facilities to gather best practices.

The result was a standardized form, the Pressure Ulcer Communication Tool, that reduced redundancy of documentation and can be faxed between hospitals. All information, including a contact person at both facilities, is included and the form becomes part of the patient’s discharge papers and can be faxed to the other facility.
“Success lies in multiple disciplines,” Mateo said. “Everyone should be involved.”
To get that point across, Mateo described an incident where a housekeeping staff member had mistakenly unplugged a patient’s specialty mattress. Through communication, everyone — including housekeeping — was aware of the risk of pressure ulcers.

The NYS Gold STAMP Resource Guide Introduction and Resource Guide are posted to the IPRO Joint Effort New York website at www.jeny.ipro.org.


Tracey Boyd is a regional reporter. Send letters to editorNY@nursingspectrum.com or comment below.