Positively bloody!

….as in  positive blood return when aspirating from central venous catheters (CVC).  Positive blood return means a free flowing blood return easily obtained on aspiration, and the color of whole blood. In other words, bloody RED, not pink-tinged. What a great feeling, knowing that the CVC is properly functioning and ready to use. NOT able to…

What? Seriously?

I’ve had conversations with several RN colleagues that left me saying, are you serious? I hesitated writing about this but I thought I’d share so we can all learn and avoid doing the same. 1. Whatever happened to those “multi-use” syringes? That’s crazy that I can’t reuse syringes when I’m just drawing up medication for…

Looking for RNs to take a SURVEY!

If you are a registered nurse currently working with/delegating/supervising “unlicensed healthcare personnel” (UHCP) also known as “unlicensed assistive personnel” (UAP), would you be interested in answering a short survey related to the use of unlicensed healthcare personnel in the provision of infusion therapy? The survey is open to US registered nurses from all healthcare settings who work…

Q&A: BP cuff for vein distention

Q: I am a new RN and was always told that I can use a BP cuff to distend the veins for IV starts instead of a tourniquet. Can you tell me how high should I pump the cuff? A:  BP cuff is one method that can be used for vein distention while assessing veins…

Q&A: When is a single use syringe considered used?

Q:  You will think I am a complete idiot but please explain when is a single use syringe considered used? I need to explain to my practice manager why I can’t re-use a syringe while reconstituting a powdered medication for injection. My practice manager is complaining that I am using too many syringes and needles which…

Why do nurses use the same alcohol swab over and over?

I know, this may come as a surprise to all of you, but the truth is, I have seen many nurses (even those highly trained and specialized) both in hospitals and outpatient settings, use the same alcohol swab over and over. Imagine this scenario where a nurse is ready to withdraw medication from several vials.…

Exhibit Hall Experience INS 2014

At every INS Annual Meeting, the exhibit hall is the one of the highlights of the week.  I am very grateful to all the vendors who were there whether they had something new to show or not because their products contribute greatly to patient care and safety. Their willingness to educate nurses is always appreciated.…

Large Volume IV Solution Shortages

It just doesn’t seem right that the national crisis with “drug shortages” would include  large volume (1000mL) IV solutions we commonly administer to our patients: 0.9% Sodium Chloride Injection 0.45% Sodium Chloride Injection Lactated Ringer’s Injection 5% Dextrose Injection   But the reality is there is a shortage, IV saline solution, in particular is on…

Certified Nurses Day – March 19

Today is a day to recognize board certified nurses  in many nursing specialties.  In infusion nursing, the certification is CRNI (Certified Registered Nurse in Infusion) awarded by the Infusion Nurses Certification Corporation (INCC). In vascular access, the certification is VA-BC (Vascular Access Board Certified) awarded by the Vascular Access Certification Corporation (VACC). Congratulations to all my…