PERFORMANCE: Nottingham University Hospitals Trust has placed the single largest NHS order for pressure relieving cushions from manufacturer Parkhouse.

More than 1,450 cushions have been ordered at a cost of £100,000 with a life-span of three years.

The cushions are being handed out to patients as part of a drive to reduce pressure ulcers at the trust. They have layers of different density foam with an air layer which helps distribute a patient’s weight.

David Newton, matron involved in the project, said: “We are investing in patient safety. Initially we were going to buy 300 cushions, but then decided we should have these on every ward, making them easily accessible when at-risk patients need them.

“The feedback from staff and patients has been very positive. We know these cushions will work alongside other areas of best practice for reducing pressure ulcers.”

At NUH, every patient admitted to hospital has a pressure ulcer risk assessment. Regular checking has seen a marked fall in the most serious pressure ulcers.

In 2011-12, NUH reduced its stage 3 and 4 pressure ulcers by 21 per cent. The NUH ambition is to have no avoidable stage 2, 3 and 4 pressure ulcers by December.