What Does an Intravenous Therapy Nurse Do?
Intravenous Therapy Nurses, or IV Nurses, are specialists in the administration of medications, fluids, blood products, and nutritional therapies via intravenous (IV) lines. They possess expertise in the insertion of peripheral IV lines, the management of central lines, and the administration of IV medications. These nurses assess the patient's IV needs, monitor for potential side effects or complications, and ensure the proper function of the IV access devices.
A comprehensive knowledge of vascular anatomy, aseptic techniques, and fluid and electrolyte balance is essential for IV Nurses. They must also be proficient in using various types of IV equipment and infusion pumps. Their role is critical in maintaining patient hydration, administering antibiotics, managing pain, providing chemotherapy, and supporting other complex medication regimens.
IV Nurses work in various healthcare settings including hospitals, outpatient clinics, long-term care facilities, and home health services. They often provide education to patients and other healthcare staff on safe IV care practices. Due to the nature of their work, they play a significant role in preventing infections and other complications related to intravenous therapy.