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Can a medical assistant or EMT assist with administering IV medications in an outpatient office?

Question:

Dear Nancy,

In an outpatient family practice office, does an IV medication for osteoporosis have to be administered by an RN, NP, PA or MD only? Is a medical assistant/EMT who has been trained in phlebotomy able to assist with these IV medications under NP or MD supervision?

Jack

Nancy Brent replies:

Dear Jack,

The administration of medications, including IV medications, is controlled by the state practice acts. A medical assistant or EMT administering an IV medication would need some statutory or rule (or case law) authority to do so. Most often, medical assistants are not given authority in state statutes or otherwise to administer intramuscular or IV medications.

In regard to EMTs administering IV medications in a family practice office, remember EMTs are trained to provide care in the field and during transport to a medical facility under the direction of a licensed physician or other authorized healthcare provider in the state medical emergency system. The care they provide in this manner is vitally important. Whether those skills can be used to provide care in a family practice office, or an ED, or any other healthcare setting, is the question.

Checking with your office’s legal counsel probably would be the best and quickest way to obtain an answer about this issue that is specific to your state’s applicable laws.

Cordially,
Nancy,

By | 2011-05-11T00:00:00-04:00 May 11th, 2011|Categories: Blogs, Nursing careers and jobs|0 Comments

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