The latest change to take place in the NICU is the adoption of ENFit® for smoother enteral connections. ENFit® products differ from their predecessors because they have specialized ends that ensure they can only be used for enteral access, and can only be connected to other ENFit® products. Preventing misconnections is critically important when it comes to improving patient outcomes in the NICU. A 2006 study published in Pediatrics found that 56 percent of the adverse events and misconnections that occurred in the NICU could have been prevented.
By transitioning to ENFit®, hospitals are making concerted efforts to prevent adverse events in the future and improve patient safety. Of course, making the transition to ENFit® is easier said than done. Successful implementation takes time and a strategic, systematic approach. That approach begins with NICU nurses and nurse managers embracing ENFit®.
3 Ways NICU Nurses Can Prepare for the Transition to ENFit®
The time to start transitioning to ENFit® is now — medical device suppliers will soon begin phasing out legacy products altogether in favor of newer enteral connectors. By preparing for the shift early, NICU nurses can help ensure the transition goes as smoothly as possible. With that goal in mind, here are three ways NICU nurses can prepare for the transition to ENFit®:
1. Familiarize yourself with ENFit® products and the changes it will bring.
Give yourself time to get used to all of the changes that come with the new ENFit® products. All NICU nurses on staff should educate themselves on all products involved in the ENFit® connection system, including feeding sets, feeding tubes, and enteral-specific syringes. Make sure you aren’t modifying or adapting the devices in any way, since that can defeat their safety system.
2. Adapt your processes to include the new enteral connectors and engage in training.
Nurse managers should create a transition team that evaluates the hospital’s current protocols and adjusts them to include the new ENFit® products. Nurses should also review pharmacy medication preparation and delivery processes to make sure they incorporate new ENFit® syringes.
Additionally, all NICU nurses should engage in thorough ENFit® training as soon as the first connectors arrive. This training should emphasize the importance of using ENFit® connectors to improve patient safety and include explanations of how feeding sets will change. The training should also incorporate both demonstrations and hands-on practice so NICU nurses feel confident by the time they connect their first ENFit® product to a patient.
3. Engage in medical supply chain management.
Adopting ENFit® means bringing in new inventory. To prepare for this, audit and consolidate your existing enteral devices and try to reduce your existing inventory of devices with older connectors. As you continue the transition, try to avoid overstocking on devices that will become obsolete as soon as your hospital fully adopts ENFit®.
Preparing for ENFit® with Kentec Medical
Nurses play a critically important role when it comes to making the transition to ENFit® successful. The phasing out of legacy systems in favor of ENFit® connectors might seem daunting, but the team at Kentec Medical is ready to help NICU nurses learn more about ENFit® products and assist with the transition process, including the supply chain management aspect.
At Kentec Medical, we know that unmatched customer service is the key to delivering value, improving health outcomes in the NICU, and providing better patient experiences. We’re here to guide you through your transition to ENFit® and ensure your NICU nurses are ready to embrace the latest enteral connectors available.
Contact us today to learn more about how Kentec Medical can help you prepare for the transition to ENFit®.