J Patient Saf. 2022 Apr 28. doi: 10.1097/PTS.0000000000001020. Online ahead of print.
OBJECTIVES: Peripheral intravenous catheters (PIVCs) are frequently used to meet patients' short-term health care needs. However, many PIVCs are not promptly removed at the completion of treatment, placing patients at risk of avoidable harm from serious complications including local and systemic infection. This study aims to report the proportion and accuracy of health care staff/students awareness of the presence of their patient's PIVC.
METHODS: We asked staff/students to recall the presence or absence of a PIVC in a patient under their care, as well as details of the date of insertion and PIVC location. We recorded concordance of responses with direct observations. To achieve this, face-to-face interviews were conducted with clinical staff/students at 2 adult hospitals.
RESULTS: Overall, 90% (n = 216) of staff responses (94% of nurses, 100% of nursing students, 76% of medical staff) correctly identified the presence/absence of a PIVC. Clinicians correctly identified the PIVC location 55% (n = 71) of the time.
CONCLUSIONS: Health care services must recognize the implications of this lack of awareness and implement and evaluate tailored quality improvement efforts to address this.