Time to get S.M.A.R.T.
Appropriate treatment of moisture-associated skin damage (MASD) has long been hampered by the lack of simple and practical classification tools. We believe that the S.M.A.R.T. resource provides an appropriate treatment regime for moisture-associated skin damage (MASD).
That’s why we are so proud of Medicareplus International’s S.M.A.R.T. resource. And even prouder that it has recently been shortlisted in the Patient Safety Improvement Category by Nursing Times Awards.
The Nursing Times Awards are highly prestigious and bring together the nursing community to recognise talent in the profession and to recognise those making nursing innovative, patient-focused and inclusive. They celebrated their 30th anniversary in 2020 and the awards continue to focus on highlighting innovation, perseverance and incredible work across 25 categories. These categories cover a wide range of nursing specialties from mental health to clinical research, and also recognise truly exceptional individuals who have gone above and beyond what is expected of them in their day-to-day role.
So you can imagine that it is a matter of great pride for us to be nominated by The Nursing Times Awards in the Patient Safety Improvement Category.
Medicareplus International is a family-owned business and a leading skin protection specialist in wound care, continence care and stoma care.
We are committed to:
- Developing the best skin protectants and wound care products possible
- Leading the way in skin integrity through Total Barrier Protection (TBP)
- Helping clinicians to provide patient-centric care and improve clinical outcomes
- Improving patients’ quality of life
But back to the S.M.A.R.T. resource. What exactly is it and why should patient-centric healthcare providers be paying attention to it?
What is the Skin Moisture Alert Reporting Tool (S.M.A.R.T.)?
The S.M.A.R.T. resource — an easy MASD reference and care guide — was developed by Claire Winterbottom and Sharon Jones, Clinical Nurse Advisors at Medicareplus International on behalf of the organisation.
Work on the resource started in response to recommendations in the document, Pressure Ulcers: revised definition & measurement, published by NHS Improvement in June 2018.
This document highlighted the historic difficulties healthcare professionals have faced in reporting both pressure ulcers and MASD — in part because Trusts differ in their definitions, measurement and reporting processes.
NHS Improvement recommended that processes be standardised and that MASD should be counted and reported in addition to pressure ulcers.
When these recommendations were made, there was just one MASD reporting tool available to healthcare providers. The tool was confusing to use and was only specific to one of the four types of MASD, incontinence-associated dermatitis (IAD).
In response to these inadequacies in MASD identification, care and reporting — and to support the new recommended system-wide approach — Medicareplus International developed the innovative S.M.A.R.T. resource.
Our S.M.A.R.T. objectives
In developing S.M.A.R.T. as an education resource, Medicareplus International set out to create:
- A visual tool to help with the identification and classification of MASD.
- A resource that any level of nursing or care staff would find easy to use.
- Information that could be presented both in poster form and as a small, portable and easily referenced resource.
Our S.M.A.R.T. results
We successfully created a resource that met all of these criteria. The end result was a diagnostic tool that staff could use to recognise the severity, source and best management of MASD.
Here are the key features.
- The S.M.A.R.T. resource provides a clear and concise, step-by-step guide to MASD for healthcare professionals.
- The resource summarises and depicts all four types of MASD; incontinence-associated dermatitis (IAD), peristomal dermatitis, intertriginous dermatitis (intertrigo) and periwound dermatitis.
- Classification terminology is simple, making it easy for clinicians to assess whether a patient is suffering from mild, moderate or severe moisture damage.
- The resource offers a general treatment plan, specific to each type and severity of MASD.
- S.M.A.R.T. signposts healthcare professionals to the Total Barrier Protection (TBP) strategy, helping them to choose the appropriate skin protectant for the correct level and severity of MASD.
Our innovative S.M.A.R.T. resource is helping clinicians to implement the recommendations made by NHS Improvement and the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE). And in December 2019, the Medicareplus International S.M.A.R.T. resource was formally endorsed by NICE.
How does S.M.A.R.T. help healthcare professionals to provide better care for their patients?
So how is S.M.A.R.T. working in practice? How is it helping healthcare professionals improve the quality of patient care?
Medicareplus International’s S.M.A.R.T. resource is already helping healthcare professionals and Trusts deliver:
Better identification and reporting
The S.M.A.R.T. resource is being used by caregivers of all levels to correctly identify and report on different levels of MASD.
The recommended TBP (Total Barrier Protection) strategy is helping ensure that the correct skin protection product is used at each stage of the healing process.
The S.M.A.R.T. resource can help identify and fill gaps in training, further improving patient care in both acute and community settings.
Better time and cost efficiency
Treatments are given in a timely manner. Barrier creams, film and protectant ointments are used correctly and at the point when they will have optimum effect. This has a knock-on effect on Trust costs, driving efficiencies and savings.
The increasing number of healthcare professionals accessing the S.M.A.R.T. resource will drive greater awareness of MASD, resulting in better clinical outcomes for patients.
Are you ready to get S.M.A.R.T.?
The Nursing Times Awards winners will be announced on 27th October 2021.
We are looking forward to celebrating the hard work and successes of the nursing community over the past 12 months. And hopefully taking our own S.M.A.R.T. award back to the Medicareplus International HQ.
But for HCPs, there’s no need to wait until the results come in. You can start getting S.M.A.R.T. right away.
Download the S.M.A.R.T. resource — from Medicareplus International, The Skin Protection Specialist in wound care, continence care and stoma care — to better identify, report and treat MASD. The resource is easy to access and easy to use.
Most importantly, it makes it easy for nursing and care staff to improve quality of care and in turn the quality of life for their patients.