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Flushing of all catheter types

Hi all,

My CNO has me on a wild goose chase for flushing information.

She read an article that said the routine flushing of lines was not necessary.  Is anyone else familiar?

How often do you all flush peripheral lines?  Central?  Are the nurses "routinely" flushing lines every shift or just before and after meds?

Do you use Heparin for CVCs?

 As always thanks for your help.

Where in the world did she

Where in the world did she get a crazy idea like that!! First you need to show her the INS standards of practice on flushing as this is how your nurses would be measured in a court of law. I have not seen anything even suggesting that flushing is not necessary, so I would insist that she show this to you. Flushing is mandatory for many reasons - prevent drug incompatiblity, assessing patency of the line, maintaining patency of the line, etc. 

 All catheters, PIV and CVC must be flushed before and after each use. When not in use for regular meds, they are flushed at least once per day in a hospital setting. You will not find any studies to support the exact volume of flush solution, heparin concentration, etc. 

Heparin can be eliminated ***if*** you are using a technology - either in the catheter or added on to the catheter hub - with instructions for saline-only flushing. Otherwise heparin is still indicated as the final flush. If a patient develops HIT, use saline-only with one of the saline-only technologies. Lynn 

Lynn Hadaway, M.Ed., RN, BC, CRNI

Lynn Hadaway Associates, Inc.

126 Main Street, PO Box 10

Milner, GA 30257


Office Phone 770-358-7861

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