Post-discharge services, such as outpatient wound care, may affect long-term health outcomes and post-recovery quality of life for patients with burns, according to a study published in the Journal of Burn Care & Research. Researchers found that access to these services may vary according to insurance status and ability to withstand out-of-pocket expenses. They compared discharge location between patients with burns who were uninsured, publicly insured, or privately insured at the time of their burn unit admissions. A retrospective review from July 1, 2015 to November 1, 2019 was performed at an American Burn Association-verified burn center. In total, 284 uninsured, 565 publicly insured, and 293 privately insured patients were identified. There were no significant differences in total body surface area (TBSA), inhalation injury, days in ICU, or need for grafting. The study team found that for the primary outcome, uninsured patients were more likely to be discharged without ancillary services. However, publicly insured patients were more likely to receive skilled nurs-ing care, and privately insured patients were more likely to receive homecare or transfer for ongoing inpatient care. There was no difference in burn unit readmission; uninsured patients were more likely to follow up with an outpatient burn clinic after discharge. However, uninsured patients were less likely to receive post-discharge resources, which could result in suboptimal long-term results, and diminished return to pre-injury functional status.

Screen Viewing Aids With Pain Tolerance for Pediatric Burn Patients

Providing children with a medical screen com-bined with the touchscreen computer to view during dressing changes can relieve the pain of children aged 1-3 suffering from burns, according to a study published in Burns. The use of a medical screen also increased the satisfaction of the parents and the wound therapist performing the dressing change. Investigators conducted a randomized controlled trial evaluating the impact of the specially designed medical dressing screen during wound dressing changes of children (n = 120) in a burns and plastic reconstruction unit who suffered burns to their hand or foot. Patients were selected and randomly allocated to three equal-sized groups as follows: control group, in which they received only regular dressing changes; computer group, in which a touch-screen computer was used for children during dressing changes; and medical screen group, in which a medical screen combined with the touch-screen computer were used for children during dressing changes. All patients underwent a dressing change once daily for 4 days. Data were distributed im-mediately after each dressing during the 4 days. The pain level of the children evaluated by medical staff was the primary outcome; the pain level of the children evaluated by the parents and the satisfaction of wound therapist were used as second outcomes. The study found that the mean scores related to pain level in the medical screen group displayed significantly better results than those in the control and computer groups.