WOCN Society Position Paper: Avoidable Versus Unavoidable Pressure Ulcers/Injuries

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Abstract

The issue of whether pressure injuries are avoidable or preventable has been and continues to be an issue of great debate and discussion for many years, and it has significant legal and regulatory implications related to prevention of wounds due to pressure. The following position paper outlines the position of the Wound, Ostomy and Continence Nurses Society (WOCN) on avoidable versus unavoidable pressure injuries. It includes the following information: statement of position, purpose/rationale for the position, definitions of avoidable versus unavoidable pressure injuries, alternative definitions, historical overview, supportive statements from expert opinion and research in the literature, and recommendations for research.

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