Should new grad be able to start IV at work? - page 3

hi i graduated in may of this year and i learned how to start an iv in a lab in school where we practiced with fake arm, never start an iv on a real patient in a real world. at work, where i... Read More

  1. by   hisblueskies
    Don't be afraid to try - it's the only way you will gain experience. If you can't get it after 2 attempts find another nurse to try. Also remember that some nurses are much better at starting IV's than other nurses. I had classmates that had no difficulty gaining access to those little veins while the rest of us struggled. They say that experience makes it easier but personally I have a theory that some nurses will never be that good at starting them while other nurses are great at it.
  2. by   bluesnurse
    Quote from RNperdiem
    I also bow down to the amazing IV skills of the paramedics I have encountered. I saw a paramedic a couple of weeks ago put an IV into a convulsing 5 year old in the back of a dimly lighted ambulance and made it look easy.
    "Dimly lit" ... that was the key for me. I was scared to death of IV's for the longest time, and couldn't hit the side of a barn most times. What really made it "click" for me was when I went to night shift. I'd always try to keep the lights at a minimum when working with drowsy/sleeping pts. That's when I discovered that (at least for me), IV starts are best done by "feel."

    Now, I won't hesitate to feel around for as long as it takes to find a vein. I'll tell my patients I'm not going to stick them unless I'm confident there's something there, and they don't mind the wait because it is almost always worth it.

    Bottom line ... just DO it! No one is perfect; we all have great days and embarrassing misses. Put on your nursing face, project confidence, and get to know which of your co-workers are the best back-up if you're having a bad day.

    I love starting IV's now -- it is such a rush when someone says, "Wow, I didn't even feel that!" But it's just a skill. Practice, practice, practice, and act as if you are 110% confident. Soon you will be. Good luck!
  3. by   Virgo_RN
    I'm coming into this discussion late, and I have not read all the responses, so please forgive me if what I am about to say has already been covered.

    There will come a time when your coworkers will not be so forgiving if you are not able to start your own IVs. You should do what you need to do in order to get checked off on that skill.
  4. by   KenyaNurse
    you are not stupid and it is scary for the first time. my advice to you let all the nurses on your floor know that you need to perfect this skill and whenever a pt nees an IV they will ask you to do it practice practice makes perfect
  5. by   MissMonica
    I had a similar problem as a new grad: Started in postpartum, which means zero IV start experience, then went to med/surg, which meant 20 IV starts a day! (exaggerating a little) But I was an "experienced RN" so I was embarassed to admit I wasnt good at starting IVs. I felt panicked when my pt's IV infiltrated or the site was due to be changed on my shift. My solution: After a little while of getting to know the staff, I figured out who the down-to-earth, supportive few nurses were and I asked to start any IVs their pt's needed with their supervision at the bedside. We would discuss the step-by-step process just before we went in the room and then go in there like I was pro while the experienced nurse observed and offered any suggestion if needed. After I did a few I got better and better and now I feel very confident. Now everyone comes to me for their IVs!!! I can get it almost every time.


    Side piece of advice: Take your time and look for a good vein YOU feel comfortable trying. Remember the pt. wants to be stuck as little as possible so they will almost always help you find a good one or patiently wait while you check both arms carefully. If I look for 3-4 minutes and cant find a vein I can get, I SPEAK UP and do not blindly stick someone just to see if I can.

    Best wishes to you in your career!
  6. by   Erin92185
    Hey there- Big picture here. I had a nursing instructor tell us, "A monkey can start an IV, I want you to know why a patient would need one." That's it, it is more important to know why. We went to school to become critical thinkers. About starting one. Remember, we all have a 1st one. You know how to do it, you just have to do it. I myself am a new nurse and was nervous at 1st. But, put on your game face and poke, even very skilled nurses miss. It is always better to try, remember, courage is realizing there is something more important than the fear.