ConvaTec, a developer and marketer of medical technologies for community and hospital care, has presented new study results that demonstrate hospitals could realize substantial savings by substituting Flexi-Seal FMS for traditional fecal management methods.
ConvaTec said that the cost savings are mainly due to a reduction in time required for nursing staff to manage fecal incontinence. The study was presented at the 23rd Annual Symposium on Advanced Wound Care and Wound Healing Society (SAWC/WHS) in Orlando, Florida.
Traditional methods for liquid or semiliquid fecal incontinence management, such as the use of absorbent briefs/pads, skin cleansers, and moisturizers, are only moderately successful in alleviating the consequences of fecal incontinence.
ConvaTec said that a budget impact model was developed to calculate the annual financial implications of using Flexi-Seal FMS versus traditional fecal management methods in a hospital ICU. Costs of consumables, nurse and nursing assistant time and of treating fecal incontinence-related complications were considered.
The average cost per patient per course of diarrhea was calculated for average-weight and bariatric patients. All figures were collected retrospectively from Carondelet St Mary’s an Ascension Hospital, Tucson, AZ.
As per the results, the average total fecal management costs per patient, per five-day course of diarrhea, including consumables and nursing time only were $423 for Flexi-Seal FMS patients and $763 for traditional fecal management patients. The annualized burden of ICU fecal incontinence in the hospital (223 patients) was $169,896 using traditional fecal management methods and $94,224 using Flexi-Seal FMS. The annual savings from Flexi-Seal FMS adoption were $75,763 by the hospital.
A chart review found that no patients with Flexi-Seal FMS developed pressure ulcers related to fecal incontinence. However, the reduction in pressure ulcer incidence may not be attributable to use of Flexi-Seal FMS. A ‘Skin Bundle’ program, which increased awareness of skin breakdown, was initiated at the same time.
ConvaTec said that since the potential effects of Flexi-Seal FMS and the ‘Skin Bundle’ program on pressure ulcer incidence cannot be separated, the cost reduction due to reduced incidence of pressure ulcers was not included in the budget impact.