Essential prerequisites for administering blood products to a patient

A certified nursing assistant or a qualified nurse should be aware of the normal procedure for administering blood products to a patient.  Any mistake in doing the routine things might complicate the problems.  The following tips will be of use to a nurse in preparing and administering blood products to a patient

  • Check and recheck the physician’s instruction before administering blood product to a patient
  • Then, check the expiry date of the blood product that is meant for administering to the patient
  • Recheck the physician’s instruction and the expiry date of the blood product with the help of another nurse in the ward; because any slip either in deciding the correct patient, the correct blood product and the validity of the product might lead to unnecessary or unwanted problems
  • Make sure that the blood product is meant for that particular patient only by rechecking the ID marked in the order and that of the patient are the same.
  • The cna should explain to the patient what he or she is going to do and also ask the patient to alert the nurse if the patient experiences any symptoms of unusual sensation that might occur during the process of infusing blood.
  • It is the responsibility of the nurse to check all the vital signs before starting infusion of blood.  If any abnormality is found in the vital signs, the physician should be intimated immediately before starting to infuse blood.
  • If the blood transfusion has to take place immediately, it is advisable that the blood product is slightly warmed by making use of any one of the approved blood warmers.
  • The nurse should also ensure that the IV line through which the blood infusion takes place is present, and the IV line should not have been infiltrated before commencing blood infusion.
  • Any solution found in the IV line should be immediately cleared off using about 0.9% of normal saline.
  • If, as a nurse, you are using any sort of pump to administer blood product to the patient, then ensure that information provided are in line with medical requirements.
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