We send our complex wound residents to a wound clinic. What information should we be getting back from them?

I have worked with many providers who tell me they receive only recommendations or even, in some cases, nothing at all from the wound clinic. To ensure continuity of care, you should be getting a copy of their assessment, what services they provided at the visit and what the new recommendations or treatments are for the resident.

Establishing a relationship with the wound clinic will help ensure the resident has the best possible outcome. I recommend meeting with wound clinic personnel and providing them information on the type of products and equipment you utilize. This information will help ensure that the clinic doesn’t recommend something that might not be available to you, or recommend “introducing” a treatment you are already providing. 

Review the information your resident referral form provides to the wound clinic. I recommend the form include your current topical treatment. Also advise of any past treatments that were unsuccessful. Provide any current antibiotics or history of antibiotic use and culture results. Inform the wound clinic of the resident’s type of bed surface, wheelchair cushion, heel lift, turning program, nutritional support or incontinence management. If you have any recent labs or studies, such as a pre-albumin, albumin, wound cultures, or vascular studies, provide this information as well. 

The referral form should have a section for the wound clinic to complete. Request a copy of its assessment, documentation of services provided, such as debridement, and any recommendations they have. Upon the resident’s return from the wound clinic, your wound care team should review the information and recommendations. If any of the details they provide appear to conflict with your information, follow up immediately.