Timing of Intravenous Therapy, Venepuncture and Cannulation Education for Nurses
Internationally it is becoming more acceptable for nurses to carry out intravenous (IV) therapy, venepuncture and cannulation. There does not appear to be consensus about when nurses should undergo this education either nationally or internationally. The aim of this research project was to try and identify when IV therapy, venepuncture and cannulation education should take place and also to identify what different District Health Boards (DHBs) and nursing schools in New Zealand consider should be included in undergraduate nursing curricula related to IV therapy, venepuncture and cannulation. An email survey method was employed, which returned 36 responses. Descriptive statistics were used to analyse these responses. This research project has utilised an exploratory descriptive approach to examine perceptions of registered nurses, who are employed in hospitals and schools of nursing, about whether nurses in New Zealand should be prepared to administer intravenous therapy, undertake venepuncture and cannulation prior to, or following, registration. Participants were asked to share their personal beliefs, thoughts and understanding about the topic. Benner's framework of Novice to Expert was used as a theoretical framework for this study. The major findings that emerged from this study were that IV therapy should be a core component of undergraduate study and that there should be a national education and training programme. There was however, no agreement about the timing of venepuncture and cannulation education and training. The findings of this study indicated that education and competency are an issue which needs to be addressed by the different health providers and associated educators. This would lead to the development of a nationally agreed framework, with agreed standards.