Br J Nurs. 2017 Apr 27;26(8):S18-S22. doi: 10.12968/bjon.2017.26.8.S18.
Weston V1, Nightingale A2, O’Loughlin C3, Ventura R3.
1 Lead Nurse Infection Prevention and Control and IPS IV Forum Co-ordinator, St Helens and Knowsley Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, Whiston Hospital.
2 Senior Lecturer in Perioperative studies, Edge Hill University, St Helens Road, Ormskirk, Lancashire.
3 IV Access Specialist Nurse, Aintree University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Liverpool.
Vascular access is an important component of health care but is not without associated risks, some of which can be life-threatening. The Vessel Health and Preservation (VHP) framework was developed with the intention of providing frontline staff with a resource to assist in assessing and selecting the best vascular access device to meet individual patient needs and to preserve veins for future use. This article examines the impact of the introduction of the framework into a haematology ward in an acute hospital in the North West of England during a 3-month pilot study. The results indicate that the VHP framework gave nursing staff more autonomy to choose the appropriate vascular access device for their patients and improved staff knowledge around pH and osmolality of intravenous drugs. However it is clear that more in-depth evaluations need to be conducted to assess the impact of VHP on patient care and outcomes.