A scanner that issues an alert when a person is at risk of developing pressure ulcers has received a Medtech Innovation Briefing (MIB) from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence.
The review, which is one of the highest health technology assessments in the UK, supports the scanner as a frontline technology that can be used in community care settings, hospitals and care homes.
MIBs are commissioned by the NHS and are designed to support commissioners and staff who are considering using new medical devices.
The briefing includes a description of the SEM Scanner technology, how it is used, its potential role in the pressure ulcer care, a review of evidence and the likely costs of using the technology.
Martin Burns, CEO of BBI, the manufacturer behind the scanner said that around 95% of pressure ulcers are preventable and the company is working to reduce pressure injury incidence by helping clinicians “make prevention real”.
He said: “Where we have seen our SEM Scanner in use, the results have been dramatic. This briefing will help avoid the need for organisations to produce similar information locally, saving staff time and resources.
“When you consider that the average prevention cost of using the SEM Scanner works out at just £1.50 per patient per day, we believe that we have game-changer technology available now in the UK.”
2018 data from NHS Improvement showed that treating pressure damage costs the NHS more than £3.8m per day; with 1,700-2,000 patients per month developing pressure ulcers.
Moreover, one pressure ulcer equates to five to eight additional days in hospital.
Glenn Smith, nurse prescriber at St Helen’s Medical Centre, was contacted by NICE as an expert adviser.
He said: “I am aware that the SEM Scanner has been available in the UK now for a few years and that BBI have been gradually building their clinical evidence.
“This review from NICE, which is one of the highest health technology assessments in the UK, now supports the fact that the SEM Scanner could be a frontline technology that could transform how we care for patients at risk of pressure ulcers.”
The Marie Curie Hospice, Newcastle was the first to deploy the SEM Scanner in a hospice setting, starting with a six-month trial in November 2017 which helped reduce incidences of pressure ulcers by nearly 50%.