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Evidence-based quality improvement project for determining appropriate discontinuation of peripheral intravenous cannulas
  1. Alyce A Schultz, RN, PhD, FAAN,
  2. Paulette Gallant, RNC, BSN
  1. Maine Medical Center, Portland, Maine, USA

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In 2003, the Honour Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International and Nursing Spectrum sponsored an “Innovations in Clinical Excellence” contest to recognise exemplars of evidence-based nursing practice. The following is 1 of 5 winning entries, which is published with permission of the Honour Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International.


With the increased acuity of today’s patients, the number of patients receiving intravenous (IV) therapy is much higher than the 25 million estimated over a decade ago by Maki and Ringer.1 Performing venipuncture for the purpose of inserting a peripheral IV line is painful to the patient and costly to the institution. In many instances, patients have several unsuccessful attempts before a peripheral line is successfully inserted. Current hospital policy was recently changed from 72 to 96 hours of dwell time based on recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). As in our previous policy, IV cannulas must be replaced at least every …

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