VOL: 99, ISSUE: 28, PAGE NO: 34
Lise Nielsen, RGN, is assistant practice and development nurse, Peterborough District Hospital and Assistant Project Manager, Department of Clinical Microbiology and Health Protection Agency Collaborating Centre, Peterborough District Hospital
Peripheral intravenous cannulation is second only to diagnostic venepuncture as the most commonly performed procedure in the UK (Dougherty, 1996). It has become commonplace to administer drugs intravenously and well over 50 per cent of patients may receive IV intervention during their hospital stay (Clayton, 1999). According to Wilkinson (1996) 63 per cent of surgical patients in Europe will have an IV cannula inserted and at least 70 per cent of patients in acute care will receive IV therapy for at least part of their hospitalisation.