The economics of pressure relieving surfaces: an illustrative case study of the impact of high-specification surfaces on hospital finances

Paul Trueman, Sarah J. Whitehead

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Pressure ulcers are associated with a significant economic burden that, in many cases, is recognised as being avoidable. The effectiveness of pressure relieving surfaces is well documented and acknowledged in clinical guidelines on the prevention and management of pressure ulcers. Whilst pressure relieving surfaces are more expensive than traditional hospital mattresses, judicious use, targeted to patients most at risk, can help to reduce the incidence and costs of pressure ulcers in hospital settings. This review paper includes a summary of pivotal clinical evidence on pressure relieving surfaces as well as a suggested approach for modelling their financial impact on hospital budgets. Simple financial modelling suggests that pressure relieving surfaces could lead to financial savings for a hospital when used appropriately.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)48-54
Number of pages7
JournalInternational wound journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2010


  • Economics
  • Finance
  • Pressure relieving surfaces

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