Best Ways to Prepare Patients for Injection

Injections are a common and effective way of delivering medications or vaccines to patients. However, injections can also cause pain, anxiety, and complications if not done properly. Therefore, healthcare providers need to follow evidence-based practices and guidelines to prepare patients for injection and ensure their safety and comfort. This article will discuss some of the best ways to prepare patients for injection, such as:

  • Checking the patient’s identity, allergies, and medical history
  • Choosing the right type, size, and technique of injection
  • Educating and communicating with the patient
  • Reducing pain and anxiety
  • Preventing infection and needlestick injuries

Checking the Patient’s Identity, Allergies, and Medical History

Before administering any injection, the healthcare provider should verify the patient’s identity, allergies, and medical history. This is to ensure that the patient is receiving the correct medication, for the correct reason, and at the correct time. It is also to prevent any adverse reactions or complications from the injection. The health care provider should:

Choosing the Right Type, Site, and Technique of Injection

The type, size, and technique of injection depend on the medication, the patient’s condition, and the health care provider’s preference. There are four main types of injections: subcutaneous, intramuscular, intradermal, and intravenous. Each type has different advantages, disadvantages, and requirements. The health care provider should:

Educating and Communicating with the Patient

The healthcare provider should educate and communicate with the patient before, during, and after the injection. This is to inform the patient about the purpose, benefits, and risks of the injection, and to obtain their consent and cooperation. It is also to reduce the patient’s anxiety and pain and to enhance their satisfaction and adherence. The health care provider should:

  • Provide information to the patient about the medication, the injection procedure, and the expected outcomes and side effects. Use simple and clear language, and avoid medical jargon. Use visual aids, such as leaflets, diagrams, or videos, if available.
  • Ask the patient if they have any questions or concerns, and answer them honestly and respectfully. Address any myths or misconceptions that the patient may have about the injection, such as the fear of needles, the transmission of infections, or the development of autism.
  • Involve the patient in the decision-making process, and respect their preferences and choices. For example, ask the patient if they have a preferred site or arm for the injection, or if they want to watch or look away during the injection.
  • Obtain the patient’s verbal or written consent before administering the injection. Explain that the patient has the right to refuse or withdraw consent at any time and that this will not affect their care or treatment.

Reducing Pain and Anxiety

Pain and anxiety are common and unpleasant experiences for patients who receive injections. Pain and anxiety can affect the patient’s physical and psychological well-being, and can interfere with the effectiveness of the injection. Therefore, the healthcare provider should use various strategies to reduce pain and anxiety, such as:

Preventing Infection and Needlestick Injuries

Infection and needlestick injuries are potential complications of injections that can harm both the patient and the healthcare provider. Infection can result from the contamination of the medication, the equipment, or the site of injection. Needlestick injuries can result from the accidental puncture of the skin by a used needle, which can transmit blood-borne pathogens, such as hepatitis B, hepatitis C, or HIV. The health care provider should:

  • Follow the standard precautions and infection control measures, such as washing hands, wearing gloves, and using sterile equipment.
  • Clean the site of injection with an antiseptic solution, such as alcohol or chlorhexidine, and allow it to dry before the injection.
  • Avoid touching the needle or the cleaned site of injection with bare hands or unsterile objects.
  • Dispose of the used needle and syringe in a puncture-resistant sharps container immediately after the injection. Do not recap, bend, or break the needle.
  • Report any needlestick injuries to the supervisor or the occupational health department as soon as possible. Seek medical attention and follow the post-exposure prophylaxis protocol.

Conclusion

Injections are a common and effective way of delivering medications or vaccines to patients. However, injections can also cause pain, anxiety, and complications if not done properly. Therefore, healthcare providers need to follow evidence-based practices and guidelines to prepare patients for injection and ensure their safety and comfort. Some of the best ways to prepare patients for injection are:

  • Checking the patient’s identity, allergies, and medical history
  • Choosing the right type, size, and technique of injection
  • Educating and communicating with the patient
  • Reducing pain and anxiety
  • Preventing infection and needlestick injuries

By following these steps, healthcare providers can improve the quality of care and the patient experience, and prevent harm and errors.

References

118.3 Evidence-Based Practices for Injections – Nursing Skills – 2e 2Injection Techniques Clinical Skills Guidance – The University of Glasgow 3How to Give an Intramuscular Injection – Verywell Health 44 Ways to Give an Injection – wikiHow 5Autologous blood transfusion | BJA Education | Oxford Academic : [5 Ways To Prepare for Your COVID-19 Vaccination – Verywell Health] : [Reducing pain and anxiety associated with injections – PubMed] : [Safe injection practices | CDC]