Leg ulcer and wound healing services

By offering people choice in health and care services such as wound healing services, in the years ahead we expect to see more services being offered by a much wider range of NHS, private and voluntary providers.

An example of this, run by TVCS in Eastbourne, is described in the case study below. 

Wound Healing Clinic, Eastbourne

  • TVCS Ltd was established in 1999 by Sylvie Hampton, previously Tissue Viability Nurse at Eastbourne DGH, and Fiona Collins, previously Senior Lecturer in Occupational Therapy at University of Brighton.  Sylvie has an international reputation for healing wounds and Fiona for preventing pressure damage, particularly in the seated patient.
  • In January 2008 TVCS opened a Wound Healing Clinic in Eastbourne – the first nurse led complex wound health clinic in the UK specialising in the prevention and management of wounds.  They aim to offer patients the right treatment, at the right time and in the right place for their wounds.
  • As the clinic meets the quality standards required by required by East Sussex Downs & Weald PCT and Hastings & Rother PCT and can demonstrate that they deliver the results the PCT wants for its patients, the PCT can offer patients the choice of being treated at the clinic as well as local NHS providers.
  • The Wound Healing Clinic has both a high success rate and is cost-effective, 82-3% of patients have their wounds healed over a 6-week period – one of the highest in the UK.
  • To put this into context, wounds have had an average duration of 3.3 years when patients arrive at the centre.

Read the full case study


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4 Responses to Leg ulcer and wound healing services

  1. Darklord says:

    The immediate advantage is obvious, they can get to the clinic which excludes those whose health prevents attendance. And it’s those with multiple co-morbidities who are less likely to heal. Lifestyle impacts hugely on wound healing, and associated motivation. Patients with an internal locus of health control ie they are willing to be responsible for choices that affect their wound healing and consequently are more likely to be concordant with a plan care as partners not passive recipients of paternalistic institutional direction. Those however with an external locus of health control ie it’s the nurse who deals with my wound ( and it’s their fault if doesn’t heal) are less likely to attend the clinc. The politician who said we should be treating leg ulcers in the community DUH!! We have been since the early nineties and utilising national guidelines RCN LU guidelines SIGN etc and successfully treating venous leg ulcers with initially multi- layer compression, and more recently with patient orientated 2-layer systems. When does listening to clinicians start? As lord Darzi says regarding patients ” no decision about me without me”. When comes to health professionals. No decision about us without us!!

    • Liz says:

      TVCS also visit people in their own homes – those who are unable to get to the clinic are seen by a specialist nurse at home, at a time convenient to them (not just to the nurse). The patients seen by TVCS are those who have chronic, incalcitrant wounds; as stated in the article above, the patients have had their wounds for on average 3.3 years prior being referred to TVCS. TVCS heal 82-83% of those wounds within 6 weeks. So just because TVCS is not an NHS provider, patients should be deprived the opportunity of their wounds healing??? If TVCS can offer the patient specialist input and the chance to heal then regardless of whether they are NHS, private or a Social Enterprise, the patients should have access to the service. Surely healing a wound in 6 weeks that the patient has had for 3 years is not only beneficial to the patient but also to the NHS budget. As Lord Darzi also said:
      “High Quality Care For All”

  2. Mary Patricia says:

    While it is true leg ulcers are associated with poor nutrition & mobility, social isolation and depression, it is not clear which comes first. Patients need holistic care such as has been offered by good, well-resourced community services for many years. As district nurses will tell you, treating the ulcer is the easiest part of the care plan. Much more complicated is developing a therapeutic relationship with patients and their family so that other issues such as depression, isolation, nutrition and safety can be addressed effectively, in the home.

    While some say clinic attendance can offer an opportunity to socialise, if I were a lonely elderly person going to a clinic would be pretty low on my list of things I’d like to do. I’d rather go to Harrods or the hairdressers, thanks.

  3. Marion Fadelle says:

    Re.Liz,5th August 2011. Just read your comments and agree.
    I’ve had, what was called satellite ulcers on my ankle for almost 3years.
    Have seen a dermatoligist who doesn’t really know. D N’s have been treating
    with compression. So far 1step forward,2 back. They say they need guidance.
    Surely, as you say,treatment should be available to all, not just privately.as the success at the Eastbourne Clinic shows the savings to the NHS and DN’s time etc.if free treatment were available there and similar centres.