ED teams that study skills together, succeed together. Interprofessional learning for focused ultrasonography for difficult PIVC insertion

Ms Kathleen Dyer1, Ms Rebecca Elmore1, Dr Georgia Livesay1,2, Dr Amy Johnston1,3

1Princess Alexandra Hospital, Department Of Emergency Medicine And Sonmsw University Of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia, 2University of Queensland, School of Medicine, Brisbane, Australia, 3University of Queensland, School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work, Brisbane, Australia

Increasing numbers of ED patients with complex clinical presentations and high acuity can place significant demands on ED staff. Often patient diagnosis and management demands insertion of peripheral intravenous cannulas (PIVCs) that can challenge clinicians. Evidence suggests that the use of ultrasound can enhance PIVC insertion, decreasing unsuccessful attempts, and increasing staff confidence and patient safety and satisfaction [1]. Nurses, doctors and medical students have been successfully trained to use ultrasonography effectively [1]. However, research literature calls for a standardized approach to the professional development and training of advanced care ED nurses around the use of focused ultrasonography. This presentation will set out how the use of inter-professional learning; the reuse of a training package developed for medical staff has effectively enabled a range of nursing staff to engage with, and undertake ultrasonography to insert difficult PIVCs in a busy tertiary teaching ED in a collaborative and inter-professional manner. Inter-professional collaboration is often a hallmark of ED treatment. Teamwork continues to be proposed as a solution for many challenges presented by increasingly complex healthcare processes in order to best support patient-centred excellent in care provision. Establishing the benefits and boundaries of fellowship in learning is just one way this ED is building a stronger work ethos and integrated services.

[1]. Varndell et al., 2018 Nurse-performed focused ultrasound in the emergency department: A systematic review. Australasian Emergency Care.


This project was developed and is presented by an interprofessional team of innovative ED staff with a keen interest in providing ED patients with the best possible care processes. They work as part of a dedicated and committed group of ED staff to ensure best possible processes are developed, trialled, implemented and then evaluated in the ED space.