Knowledge and skills associated with medication administration via enteral tubes

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The aim of this study was to evaluate drug administrations via enteral tubes by nurses in intensive care units” Sari et al (2018).

Abstract:

Background: Medication administration via enteral tubes is a complex and key application for which nurses in intensive care units are responsible.

Aim: The aim of this study was to evaluate drug administrations via enteral tubes by nurses in intensive care units.

Methods: This research was conducted using a descriptive and cross-sectional research design. The study was conducted with 289 nurses at intensive care units in hospitals in İzmir, Turkey. The data of the study were collected with the ‘Sociodemographic Information Form’ and the ‘Enteral Medication Administrations Questionnaire’, which was designed in accordance with the literature and consists of questions on interventions before, during and following medication administrations via enteral tubes.

Results: It was found that more than half the nurses (62.3%) use nasogastric tubes for medication administrations and that all of them use the enteral way for the administration of medications in the form of tablets, while 58.8% use this method to administer the medications in the form of enteric-coated tablets. It was determined that approximately half the nurses (52.6%) apply more than one medication separately, and a majority (84.1%) use tap water to wash the enteral tube.

Conclusions: Enteral medication administration practices are inconsistent. Some nurses use unsafe practices and may therefore compromise patient care.

Relevance to clinical practice:  Conduction of education programmes on medication administration via enteral tubes for intensive care unit nurses is important in improving nurses’ knowledge.

Reference:

Sari, D., Kadifeli, D., Akbiyik, A. and Taşkiran, N. (2018) Intensive care unit nurses’ knowledge of medication administration via enteral tubes. Nursing in Critical Care. February 8th. [epub ahead of print].

DOI: 10.1111/nicc.12335

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