Researchers Say PIVC Management is Ambiguous and Fragmented in Many Hospitals

Blanco-Mavillard, et al. (2022) observe that peripheral intravenous catheters (PIVC) are commonly used in hospital worldwide; however, PIVC are not exempt from complications. Catheter-related bloodstream infections (CRBSI) increase morbidity and mortality rates, and costs for the healthcare organization. PIVC care is shaped by the complex mix of professional and organizational culture, such as knowledge gaps, low perception of impact of PIVCs on patient safety, or lack of hospital guidelines.

The researchers sought to explore determinants of decision-making about the prevention of PIVC-BSI among nurses in Spanish hospitals.

They conducted a descriptive qualitative study with semi-structured interviews in three public hospitals, the Balearic Islands Health Care Service in Spain. They considered hospital ward nurses working routinely with inpatients at any of the three hospitals for enrolment in the study. They approached relevant informants to identify suitable participants who recruited other participants through a ‘snowball’ technique. Fourteen inpatient nurses from the hospital took part in this study between September and November 2018. The researchers employed several triangulation strategies to underpin the methodological rigor of their analysis and conducted the member checking, showing the information and codes applied in the recording of the interviews to identify the coherence and any discrepancies of the discourse by participants.

The researchers identified four major themes in the analysis related to determinants of care: The fog of decision-making in PIVC; The taskification of PIVC care; PIVC care is accepted to be suboptimal, yet irrelevant; and chasms between perceived determinants of poor PIVC care and its solutions.

The clinical management of PIVCs appear ambiguous, unclear, and fragmented, with no clear professional responsibility and no nurse leadership, causing a gap in preventing infections. Furthermore, the perception of low risk on PIVC care impact can cause a relevant lack of adherence to the best evidence and patient safety. Implementing facilitation strategies could improve the fidelity of the best available evidence regarding PIVC care and raise awareness among nurses of impact that excellence of care.

Reference: Blanco-Mavillard I, et al. What fuels suboptimal care of peripheral intravenous catheter-related infections in hospitals? A qualitative study of decision-making among Spanish nurses. Antimicrobial Resistance & Infection Control. Vol. 11, article number 105 (2022).