IV Nurse Day - January 25th
Celebrating IV Nurse Day by discussing what they do, where they work, online resources available, certification, etc. These RNs are responsible for each step of infusion therapy: IV placement, site reaction and treatment, monitoring patient status and knowledge of multiple IV therapies.
Happy IV Nurse Day! Thanks to infusion specialty nurses, patients are able to receive a wide array of much needed intravenous medication. They are also responsible for maintaining central venous catheters, monitoring patient status during infusion therapy and step in quickly during a drug reaction. The art of placing an IV catheter is certainly a learned skill that takes some practice. Not everyone is able to place a difficult IV and it can be stress inducing depending on the urgency or delicacy of the clinical situation. Today we celebrate your steady hands!
Having a great IV nurse available on the floor is an invaluable resource. We’ve all met those colleagues who could get blood out of a rock if they needed to. Need to place the tiniest IV catheter in a very active baby or the largest size imaginable in an adult headed for CT? IV nurses are there when you need them and hardly bat an eye at the task.
Infusion nurses can work in a variety of clinical settings. Outpatient infusion clinics and specialty MD offices often utilize infusion nurses. Many hospitals I’ve worked in have an IV team dedicated to the most difficult insertions. They have been able to find veins and place a rock solid IV in the strangest places! Home infusion nurses need to be extremely flexible (having to work with whatever conditions are provided at the patient's home) and have added responsibility and autonomy as they are usually practicing solo.
Placing a great IV is always the goal, but in reality sometimes the best placed IV’s can still go south. Patients accidentally dislodging the catheter, irritating medications, and weak vein walls can all lead to unfortunate infusion site issues. Administration of vesicant medication requires additional attention and technique - ensuring blood return is present much more often in order to prevent serious tissue damage. Infusion nurses do their best to prevent these unfortunate events. They are able to discern between a potential flare reaction, infiltration and extravasation. These RNs are also are well versed on the treatments required for such issues - sometimes using elevation, hot/cold compresses and even administration of antidotes may be needed.
IV nurse day was established January 25th, 1981 and continues to be celebrated by those in the infusion specialty around the country. The Infusion Nurses Society, established in 1973, offers memberships and support to those working in the area of infusion therapy. You can also visit their IV Nurse Day store to scoop up a thank you gift for that special IV nurse or celebrate with your colleagues in matching gear. The theme for 2017’s IV Nurse Day is, "IV Nurses: Outstanding Skills. Outstanding Care".
If you’re not yet a practicing RN (or work as an RN in a different specialty) but IV placement and infusion nursing interest you, there are plenty of resources available online. This nursing blog has tons of great articles and information for everyone - everything from an IV checklist to coverage of the most recent annual Infusion Nurses Society meeting coverage. There a plethora of youtube videos on many infusion related nursing skills - anything from why you’re missing IV’s to calculating IV drip rates (just google video search ‘IV nurse’). Allnurses also has a forum dedicated to infusion/intravenous nursing; here you can find information and discussion topics related to best practice, CVC/PICC line maintenance, IV placement tips, salary, certification and much more.
If you are already practicing in the area of infusion therapy and would like to take your knowledge further, the Infusion Nurses Society also offers a Registered Nurse of Infusion certification (CRNI®). Having additional certification not only serves as a testimony to your advanced skills but can potentially provide an increase in wages depending on employer. The Infusion Nurses Society website also has pamphlets and published papers explaining the importance and benefits of certification - created to assist nurses in earning support from their current employers in obtaining the certification. As with any additional certification, it conveys a level of skill mastery and can only increase your marketability.
Per the Infusion Nurses Society, “As the official IV Nurse Day proclamation reads, ‘recognition is long overdue for the nurses who practice IV therapy’. We couldn’t agree more. Get out there and enjoy your day!”.
About Us. (n.d.). Retrieved January 20, 2017, from
CRNI® Certification|Resources. (n.d.). Retrieved January 20, 2017 from
IV Nurse Day. (n.d.). Retrieved January 23, 2017, from http://www.nursetogether.com/event/iv-nurse-day
Membership Benefits. (n.d.). Retrieved January 20, 2017, from
About Ashley Hay, BSN, RN
Over 10 years of nursing experience in several areas of Pediatric & Adult Oncology including clinical research, chemotherapy, transplant, hematology, proton therapy, GI surgery, wound care, post anesthesia recovery, etc.
Ashley Hay, BSN, RN has '10' year(s) of experience and specializes in 'Oncology'. Joined Aug '16; Posts: 65; Likes: 219.Jan 25That's my mistake- I assumed by saying nurses (as it is called national IV Nurses day) I was including LVNs (licensed vocational nurse). I'm sorry if I offended you (maybe I'm just in the dark here). As an LVN do you not refer to yourself as a nurse?