Tangent Medical Blog

NovaCath: Addressing the Challenges of IV Catheter Failures

Posted by Curtis Bloch

May 7, 2015 2:55:29 PM

Accepted_but_Unaccepted_Peripheral_IV_Catheter_FailuresUnacceptable IV Catheter Failure Rates
For several decades, short-peripheral IV catheter failures and their related complications have been a topic of discussion. An estimated 75% of U.S. hospitalized patients require an IV catheter, and complication rates are routinely found to range from 35-50%. The implications for patients, clinicians, and the healthcare system have yet to be addressed although they have been discussed and debated. A central challenge has been a lack of hard evidence and agreement as to the underlying mechanisms related to IV catheter complications as well as new technology.

Advancing Clinical Practice Through Education
The May/June 2015 edition of The Journal of Infusion Nursing is a must read for those with a desire to improve IV therapy. The article “Accepted but Unaccepted: Peripheral IV Catheter Failures”1 is an excellent well-documented article on IV complications to date.

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Topics: Challenges, Best Practice, Healthcare Worker Safety, Patient Satisfaction, PIVC Complications

Changing a Needleless Connector Shouldn’t Be This Hard!

Posted by Edie Chevalier, BSN

Oct 1, 2014 3:11:00 PM

Needleless_connector_problemLast week I had the opportunity of being in an account where every PACU across this health system receives their patients from the OR with the IV line directly connected to the catheter hub. They then have the tedious post-op task of reconfiguring the set up to ensure every patient goes to the floor with an extension set and needleless connector between the hub and the IV line.  Like the vast majority of needleless connectors used today, these were fused to the end of their extension tubing. There are a number of clinical situations that require the needleless connector to be removed – e.g., before or after a blood specimen has been collected; blood has been infused through it; a specialty tubing is required (OR or Radiology). When the connector is fused to the tubing, the entire extension set needs to be swapped out.

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Topics: Blood Exposure, Best Practice, Closed system, Touch Contamination, IV Catheter Safety, Needleless Connector

Knowing your IV Catheters III: The Next Generation of Safety

Posted by Elyse Kemmerer White

Sep 16, 2014 2:57:00 PM

NovaCath_IV_Catheter_SafetyAs we discussed in our last two posts, IV catheter technology has been evolving over time to meet increasing demands for improved safety.

OSHA holds a clear mandate to hospitals for protection of their employees:  “eliminate occupational exposure or reduce it to the lowest feasible extent.” (OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens Standard (29 CFR 1910.1030 (d)(2)(i)) ) Eliminating occupational exposure to blood or reducing it to the lowest feasible extent is best achieved by using passive needle safety technology together with a closed IV catheter system, which offers complete blood control through the insertion and dwell time of that catheter.

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Topics: Blood Exposure, Closed system, Blood Control, Healthcare Worker Safety, IV Catheter Safety, OSHA Compliance

Knowing your IV Catheters II: Blood Containment vs. Blood Control

Posted by Elyse Kemmerer White

Sep 12, 2014 8:41:00 AM

blood_containment_IV_catheterThis is the second in a series of three blogs providing an overview of how peripheral IV catheter technology has evolved to meet increasing demand for safer medical devices that improve overall healthcare worker (HCW) safety. In our last blog, we discussed how the first generation of safety IV catheters focused largely on protecting HCWs from accidental needlestick injuries.  This blog will focus on how recent advancements in blood containment technologies have made improvements in overall HCW safety.

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Topics: Blood Exposure, Closed system, Blood Control, Healthcare Worker Safety, Multi-Access, IV Catheter Safety

Knowing your IV Catheters I: Standard Safety

Posted by Elyse Kemmerer White

Sep 9, 2014 10:51:00 PM

IV_CatheterThis is the first in a series of three blogs that explores the history of the peripheral IV catheter and how this technology has evolved over time to meet increasing demands for improved safety. Today, we will address straight safety IV catheters, and in subsequent posts will go on to straight safety IV catheters with blood containment and will conclude the series with closed IV catheter systems.
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Topics: Healthcare Worker Safety, IV Catheter Safety

NovaCath: Designed to Dwell

Posted by Elyse Kemmerer White

Sep 4, 2014 5:46:00 PM

blog-1In our last blog, we highlighted a recent JAVA article that calls out the importance of minimizing catheter movement at the insertion site to improve clinical outcomes for patients with peripheral IV catheters. We included a video that showed how NovaCath’s Advanced Catheter Stabilization can prevent catheter migration, or pistoning, of the catheter in and out of the insertion site during movement of the body part to which the catheter is affixed.

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Compliance: IV Catheter Stabilization

Posted by Elyse Kemmerer White

Sep 2, 2014 4:03:00 PM

IV_Catheter_StabilizationA recent paper published in the Journal of Vascular Access summarizes a panel discussion of infection prevention experts on the topic of improving peripheral IV outcomes. Among the key strategies identified, the panelists agreed on “the importance of stabilization to prevent movement in the insertion site and subsequent infiltration/extravasation and phlebitis.”

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Topics: Standardizing IV Practice, IV Stabilization, catheter migration

OSHA and Healthcare Worker Safety: Common Myths

Posted by Elyse Kemmerer White

Aug 15, 2014 3:14:00 PM

OSHA_Healthcare_Worker_SafetyIn 2010, OSHA released a Request for Information (RFI) on occupational exposure to infectious agents in settings where healthcare is provided. Although there are more than 16 million people who work in the broadly-defined healthcare industry, with 4.6 million of those in hospitals, OSHA received exactly 502 responses to its RFI.

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Topics: Healthcare Worker Safety, OSHA Compliance

IV Catheter Safety: A Seat Belt Analogy

Posted by Elyse Kemmerer White

Jul 31, 2014 7:06:00 PM

The other night I IV_Catheter_Safety_Analogywas watching a re-run of the entrepreneurial TV show Shark Tank and discovered a brilliant innovation in car safety called LifeBelt. We all know the statistics associated with unbuckled passengers. It’s not pretty: 43,000 people are killed in auto accidents each year in the United States; 63% of them were not wearing seat belts (data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration).

The inventor of LifeBelt came up with a way to add a sensor to every seat belt in a car. If the seat belt is not buckled, the car doesn’t start. What a clever invention and added layer of security. Without such a technology, the decision to use, or to not use, a seat belt is up to individual drivers and passengers each and every time they enter a vehicle.

This of course, makes me think of all the optional safety features currently available for IV catheters

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Topics: IV Catheter Safety

IV Infiltration: A Personal Story

Posted by Edie Chevalier, BSN

Jun 25, 2014 10:57:00 AM

IV_InfiltrationEarlier this week, my brother had to be taken to his local hospital Emergency Department for a suspected infection. He was accompanied by my sister because he is developmentally disabled and cannot communicate verbally. After being seen by a physician, he was prescribed IV fluids and IV antibiotics. After the IV antibiotics were nearly infused, alarms began to sound and my brother grew visibly uncomfortable. Despite the presence of alarms, no one stopped in to check on his IV. As it turns out, the entire bag of antibiotics had infiltrated into the tissue surrounding the insertion site.

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Topics: IV Stabilization, IV Infiltration


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