Despite evidence that depot medication is more safely administered by the dorso-gluteal route we have completed research showing that nurses are reluctant to change practice. This paper describes practitioner research into nurse’s behaviour when giving depot medication. The presentation will consider implications for teaching nurses about best practice. We hope to engage people in discussion about why teaching techniques may fail to cause nurses to change behaviour and we hope to develop ideas about developing effective clinical education.
Nursing practice and practitioners have long advocated for the use of intramuscular (IM) injections in administering medicines to mental health patients, (Walsh and Brophy 2010). Continuous development in nursing practice supported by theoretical and empirical research is crucial to upholding consistency in efficacy of care and the avoidance of unnecessary harm to our service users.
There are several clinical areas within our workplace where depot medication is administered. Anecdotal evidence within the Trust suggested that most nurses used the dorsogluteal injection route. Apart from this being a dangerous site, due to the potential risks of nerve injury ((Mishra and Stringer 2010; Kaya et al 2015), medication may not reach the gluteal musculature and becomes deposited into the fatty tissue where painful nodules may develop. Patient choice could also be ether limited or absent and suggests a lack of considered thought regarding potentially compromised injection sites.