This database could be a great way to improve the wound care outcomes for people across the world.
There’s no denying the many technological and scientific breakthroughs that wound care specialists are using to reshape the industry. In the last few months alone, projects involving new bleeding treatments based on electrical currents and wound mats made from artificial skin have demonstrated where medicine is headed in the coming years.
And while those efforts help inspire doctors and encourage reluctant patients, it’s not always enough to have the latest devices or techniques. As many doctors are finding, there are issues with the very basics of how proper wound care is carried out. For instance, one recent study from a group out of Miami made important inroads into how to effectively use skin grafts to treat ulcers.
Now, a team from the University of Tasmania is launching a similar study to help improve the basic confines of wound care management.
A whole new approach
As ABC News Australia reported, the Tasmanian team is working to create a brand-new wound care database for national use. The project as a whole will benefit the National Wound Management Innovation Cooperative Research Centre, which serves as the head for all wound care research and guideline-setting for the entirety of Australia.
The country in particular is facing several key issues as it pertains to proper wound care. Specifically, costs have begun to exceed the $3 billion mark, and an increasing percentage of the population in Australia is having to deal with chronic wounds. As part of the database that’s being built, the researchers are collecting mounds of data. Lead researcher Dr. Ivan Bindoff told ABC News that the information they need most is about how wound care doctors operate.
“The practitioners can input relevant information about a wound they are assessing,” he said. “They’ll do this wound assessment, they’ll tell us what the wound looks like, they’ll take a photo, they’ll tell us how big it is and what kind of care plan they’re applying.”
Once the database is completed – there is no current timeline – it will be available as an online resource, meaning doctors across the country (and in other locales as well) may be able to access it. Ultimately, the database will be about not just creating better treatment – like ensuring doctors have the right knowledge and understand the steps for meaningful wound care – but as Bindoff explained, a change in culture. He and his colleagues believe that they need a system that takes chronic wounds more seriously and has doctors and patient’s alike working together to ensure proper outcomes.
The Tasmanian team has had some success in the past; according to ABC News, they created an anti-smoking app that proved effective. However, only time will tell if the database achieves its intended aim, but it’s clear the need is very much there.
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