Skin injury prevention in an Irish neonatal unit: An action research study
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Grosvenor, Jane, O' Hara, Mary, & Dowling, Maura. (2016). Skin injury prevention in an Irish neonatal unit: An action research study. Journal of Neonatal Nursing, 22(4), 185-195. doi: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jnn.2016.01.004
Aim This study aimed to improve skin assessment and skincare practices for neonates in a regional neonatal setting in Ireland by the implementation of the Neonatal Tissue Viability Risk Assessment Tool. Method A qualitative Participatory Action Research design was used. Following the introduction of the Neonatal Tissue Viability Risk Assessment Tool into the neonatal unit three focus groups with nurses (n = 17) were held. The focus group data was analysed using thematic analysis. Results Neonatal nurses acknowledged the need for change regarding the prevention of neonatal skin injuries. Variations in skincare practices were found and a need for standardised care was highlighted. Implementation of the Neonatal Tissue Viability Risk Assessment Tool helped to raise awareness, standardise practice and improve documentation and communication. Conclusion Implementing a skin risk assessment tool into neonatal units in Ireland together with evidence-based skincare guidelines and staff education could result in the reduction of skin injuries in these infants.