Clinical Staff at Unity Hospice Wisconsin Advocate for the Macy Catheter

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In a series of recently released video testimonials, Unity Hospice staff explain how incorporating the Macy Catheter into their plan of care has reduced nursing time and burden, allowed for increased caregiver involvement, decreased cost, and shortened time to palliation.

Hospi Corporation recently released the final of three testimonial videos featuring Medical Director Dr. Amy James, MD, Home Care Nurse Tara L. Kerscher, RN, Inpatient Residence Nurse Ida A. Fameree, RN, and Nursing Educator & AHA BLS Instructor Angie L. Ott, RN, CHPN.

All three testimonials cover how medication administration via the Macy Catheter compares to other methods such as CADD pumps and sublingual administration.

Clinical Efficacy

Imagine that you’re a part of a team of nurses who have been titrating doses for hours without achieving the desired symptom management. Doses finally become maxed out and the subcutaneous site integrity won’t hold, but the patient is still suffering.

The first time Tara L. Kerscher, RN used the Macy Catheter, she was in this exact situation. After she inserted the device as a last resort, the patient was comfortable in just fifteen minutes.

“In hindsight, had we started right away with the Macy Catheter, it would have been a much quicker visit and much more peaceful and comfortable for the patient.”

In Rectal Catheter Decreases Cost and Nursing Time, Unity staff describe how using the Macy Catheter sooner than as a last-ditch effort can help patients avoid hours of uncontrolled symptoms. Inpatient Residence Nurse Ida A. Fameree, RN describes the Macy Catheter as an “excellent symptom management tool” and Unity’s preferred method.

Operational Improvements

Most oral medications can be crushed and administered via a Macy Catheter. Therefore, switching to the rectal route doesn’t require the time, money, and frustration associated with switching a medication.

Why not just administer the medications sublingually? In Rectal Catheter Decreases Cost and Nursing Time at Unity Hospice, Tara L. Kerscher, RN explains that sublingual administration presents risk for aspiration and obscures how well the medication is working and in what dosing.

CADD pumps work well, but they’re pricey and create a new set of problems.

“We were using subcutaneous CADD pumps, which was an easy way to get access but much more technologically challenging.

“When you think about CADD pumps, talk about delay… Do they have the medication? Do they have the volume? How do you get it? What pharmacy? Here, we’re using contingency that we have and a Macy that we have. I’m not having to send a prescription for anything else to the pharmacy, so our time to initiate something is as minimal as it can be.” -Dr. Amy James, MD

Overall, Unity staff clarify that because the Macy Catheter facilitates rapid symptom management via administration of medications already at the bedside, the device ultimately saves the agency time and money while still improving patient care.

Nurse and Family Empowerment

Rectal Catheter Empowers Both Nurses and Families touches on how the Macy Catheter allows for increased caregiver involvement. Although initial placement of the administration device is quick, painless, and non sterile, it does have to be completed by a licensed clinician. However, subsequent re-insertions and medication administration can be conducted by a loved one since the Macy Catheter is easy for families and caregivers of all ages to use.

“Once it’s in place, the families can take over a lot of the medication management and reinsertion. I think it also empowers our families. They feel like they’re really providing a benefit by being at the bedside.” -Tara L. Kerscher, RN

Amidst a nationwide nurse staffing shortage, nurse empowerment (and therefore retention) is also a vital outcome of establishing a new standard of care.

Work stress accumulates when nurses’ efforts to care for their patients require painful, invasive, or slow-acting methods.

While “chasing symptoms” requires a hefty amount of nursing time, delivery wait times and delivery fees, triaging, and potential delay in symptom management, the Macy Catheter allows for quick palliation of symptoms using oral medications already at the bedside.

“Having the Macy Catheter available gives the nurses the opportunity to do their job in the field in a quicker manner… It gives job satisfaction to the hospice nurses because they know they can do what they set out as their mission to do.” -Dr. Amy James, MD

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