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G.G. Northington
When to dc an IV/PICC?

I work at a LTAC hospital where patients usually have a 21 day minimum stay. The majority of our patients have PICC lines--my question is--when should we discontinue the line?  I know that we should discontinue the access as soon as therapy is complete--but some of our patients stay a little while longer while waiting on placement (nursing home, rehab, home with home health,etc) or waiting on culture results.  How many facilities are taking out the PICCs and inserting PIV for those few remaining days?  I am concerned because we have had 2 positive blood cultures from patients that have had their initial treatment complete, but for some reason or the other were not discharged before spiking a fever and positive cultures and now prolonging their stay for another round of IV abx treatment.--and a new PICC.

Thanks for your help--G.G.

 Take out these catheters

 Take out these catheters as soon as therapy is finished. CDC Guidelines states, "Promptly remove any intravascular catheter that is no longer essential." Category 1A, their highest rank. Waiting around and leaving these catheters "just in case" presents a danger to your patients, as you have already seen. 



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

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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