WOC Nurse Week 2023: The Unsung Heroes of Healthcare
Updated: Apr 16
Joseph Ebberwein, CFO and Cofounder
Wound Ostomy Continence (WOC) nursing is a specialized field of nursing that focuses on the care of patients with wounds, ostomies, and continence issues. As described on their website, Certification by the Wound Ostomy Continence Nursing Certification Board (WOCNCB) “provides validation of specialized knowledge, skills, and expertise of an experienced nurse. The WOCNCB adheres to strict quality standards and is a nationally certified organization.
WOC nurses are essential in improving patient outcomes and reducing healthcare costs. This Week of the WOC Nurse 2023, the Corstrata team celebrates the incredible work of WOC nurses and highlights the benefits they bring to healthcare providers, payers, and patients. Furthermore, we would like to emphasize the value of virtual WOC nursing services, such as those provided by Corstrata, in solving the critical access problem to WOC resources.
Improved Clinical Outcomes for Providers
From the perspective of healthcare providers, WOC nursing is incredibly valuable. WOC nurses have expertise in wound care, ostomy care, and continence care, which means they can provide specialized care to patients with complex needs. This expertise helps improve patient outcomes by reducing the risk of wound and ostomy complications. Additionally, WOC nurses can help reduce hospital readmissions by ensuring that patients receive the appropriate care after they leave the hospital and are being cared for at home.
As WOC nurses are a scarce resource with less than 10% practicing in the post-acute space, virtual WOC nursing services like Corstrata are becoming increasingly important. By providing healthcare providers with virtual access to WOC nurse expertise, Corstrata helps address the shortage of WOC nurses to ensure that patients receive the specialized care they need, regardless of care setting and geographical location.
Lower Cost per Patient for Payers
From the perspective of payers, WOC nursing is valuable because it can help reduce healthcare costs resulting from poor overall care management. By providing specialized care to patients with complex needs, WOC nurses help to reduce the risk of serious complications which can lead to serious adverse events, such as preventable amputations and even death. Specialized WOC nursing care also helps to reduce unnecessary hospitalizations and other healthcare costs associated with poor patient outcomes.
Virtual WOC nursing services, such as Corstrata, offer a cost-effective solution for payers by providing access to scarce WOC nurse expertise. This not only helps improve patient outcomes but also reduces the overall cost of care, as patients receive care overseen by the WOC nurse, in conjunction with their physician, for evidence-based care using the latest technology and advanced wound dressings.
Improved Clinician Confidence in Caring for Wound and Ostomy Patients
WOC nurses play a crucial role in supporting and educating other healthcare professionals in the care of patients with complex wound and ostomy needs. Through collaboration, knowledge sharing, and mentorship, WOC nurses can help improve the confidence and competence of their colleagues, ultimately leading to better patient care.
Corstrata's virtual WOC nursing services enable healthcare providers (as well as patients and their caregivers) to consult with WOC nurse experts remotely to provide the support and guidance they need to manage care for patients with complex wounds and ostomies with increased confidence. This virtual collaboration can lead to more efficient and effective care for patients with wounds and ostomies, reducing the likelihood of complications and improving overall clinical and financial outcomes.
Increased Satisfaction of the Patient and Caregiver
From the perspective of patients and their caregivers, WOC nursing is also extremely valuable. Patients with wounds and ostomies often experience pain and discomfort, which can negatively impact their quality of life. WOC nurses can help reduce pain and discomfort by providing specialized care that is centered on each patient’s needs. Additionally, WOC nurses can help improve patients’ confidence in their own care by providing education and support.
Virtual WOC nursing services like Corstrata can further enhance patient satisfaction by making WOC nurse expertise more accessible, ensuring patients receive the care they need in a timely manner, regardless of their location. This increased access to specialized care can lead to better adherence to treatment plans, improved outcomes, and a higher overall quality of life for patients.
The Future of WOC Nursing and Virtual Services
As the demand for WOC nursing expertise continues to grow, the need for innovative solutions to address the shortage of WOC nurses becomes increasingly important. Virtual WOC nursing services like Corstrata represent a promising way forward, leveraging technology to make specialized care more accessible to patients and healthcare providers alike.
In the future, we can expect virtual WOC nursing services to evolve and expand, incorporating new technologies such as telehealth, remote patient monitoring, advanced wound imaging, and “smart dressings.” These innovations will enable WOC nurses to provide even more effective care to patients in need, regardless of their location, ultimately leading to better outcomes and a higher quality of life for patients living with wounds, ostomies, and continence issues.
As you can see, Wound Ostomy Continence (WOC) nursing is an incredibly valuable field of nursing that plays a vital role in improving patient outcomes and reducing healthcare costs. From the perspective of healthcare providers, patients, and payers, WOC nursing provides a range of benefits essential to delivering high-quality care to patients with complex needs.
This WOC Week 2023, let us celebrate the vital contributions WOC nurses make to healthcare and recognize the potential of virtual WOC nursing services like Corstrata in addressing the critical need for access to specialized care. By embracing innovative solutions such as virtual WOC nursing, we can ensure that patients with wounds, ostomies, and continence issues receive the care they need and deserve, ultimately leading to better outcomes and improved quality of life.
Together, we can work towards a future where every patient with complex wound and ostomy needs receives the specialized care they need, regardless of their location or circumstances. If you're a healthcare provider who is interested in learning more about WOC nursing services or incorporating virtual WOC nursing services like Corstrata into your care model, we encourage you to visit the Corstrata website for more information or contact us.
Corstrata was founded as a solution to provide access to scarce wound and ostomy specialists. We provide services to a range of healthcare providers - hospital at home, home health, hospice, skilled nursing facilities, mobile clinicians, value-based care organizations, etc. Our staff of board-certified wound nurses (CWS, WOC Nurses) provides virtual wound consultations employing evidence-based wound practice to all 50 states, DC, and Puerto Rico.