In the past, I was always afraid of needles. Whenever there’s a routine health check up at school and flu shots are being given, I would do everything I can to avoid getting the shots. And yet, I still get the shots anyway. When I discovered my passion for care giving, I decided to get rid of my fear of needles. But still, there are times when I’d squirm whenever I see one of my elderly patients getting an IV for their medical condition.
Now, since we are talking about IV’s, I’m pretty sure you’re familiar with the traditional needle IV’s. I really hate it because it prevents you from moving your hand. If you do, the needle will get dislodged and the nurse will have to take it out and re-insert the needle IV port into your hand again! Good thing though that a few years later, the needle-less IV ports were now available. When I got sick a few times as an adult, the hospital where I was admitted to already has needle-less IV’s. When I started working as a caregiver for sick seniors, my task was making sure that the IV ports were clean and disinfected before the nurse can use it for the patient.
So why use needle-less IV ports? Studies show that needle IV ports have high infection risks amongst senior patients, especially since their immune system is already weak enough to cause a simple bacterial infection to spread at a rapid rate. Needle-less IV ports, backed up with good sanitary practices, is a good pain-free way to have your elderly patient get their needed IV medication. Needle-less IV ports are also good for cleaning and disinfecting, since it helps avoid accidental needle sticking. In the old days, when needled IV ports are being discarded, there’s a chance that a health worker might get pricked by a needle that came from a sick person. In fact, 50% of all infections are This is one important reason why a lot of hospitals are now getting the needle-less IV ports.
Most of the new IV’s are using ports that have anti-microbial coatings, which protect both the senior patient and the caregiver from any harmful pathogens that may attempt to infect both the caregiver and the patient. Also, needle-less IV’s are not that painful when given to patients. Comfort matters a lot for senior citizens since their skin is a lot sensitive compared to younger people. Right now, I haven’t seen hospitals use the traditional needle IV ports, so if ever your elderly parent gets hospitalized or needs an IV therapy, talk to your doctor about getting a needle-less IV port.
About the Author:
Jessica Greenberg is a caregiver from San Diego, California. She is striving to promote better health practices for those who wish to learn efficient ways on taking care of the elderly. When she’s not busy working, you’ll see her eating a healthy snack near a fresh vending machine.