Introduction:Vascular access is the most common invasive procedure performed in health care. This fundamental procedure must be performed in a safe and effective manner. Vascular access devices (VADs) are often the source of infections and other complications, yet there is a lack of clear guidance on VADs for health providers across different settings. A Best Practice Guideline (BPG) was developed by the Registered Nurses? Association of Ontario (RNAO) to provide evidence-based recommendations on the assessment and management of VADs.Methods:RNAO BPGs are based on systematic reviews of the literature following the GRADE approach. Experts on the topic of vascular access were selected to form a panel. Systematic reviews were conducted on six research areas: education, vascular access specialists, blood draws, daily review of peripheral VADs, visualization technologies, and pain management. A search for relevant research studies published in English limited to January 2013 was applied to eight databases. All studies were independently assessed for eligibility and risk of bias by two reviewers based on predetermined inclusion and exclusion criteria. The GRADE approach was used to determine certainty of the evidence.Results:Over 65,000 articles were screened related to the six priority research questions. Of these, 876 full-text publications were examined for relevance, with 174 articles designated to inform nine recommendations in the BPG on the subject areas of: comprehensive health teaching, practical education for health providers, blood draws, daily review of peripheral VADs, visualization technologies, and pain management. In June 2021, the RNAO published the BPG on vascular access, which included the recommendations and other supporting resources.Conclusion:The vascular access BPG provides high quality guidance and updated recommendations, and can serve as a primary resource for health providers assessing and managing VADs.

Year of Publication
The Journal of Vascular Access
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