1. Section Editor(s): Alexander, Mary MA, RN, CRNI(R), CAE, FAAN

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When you read INS' mission statement, you'll see the first statement is "INS sets the standard for excellence in infusion nursing by developing and disseminating standards of practice." As the global authority in infusion nursing, INS has taken the lead in educating infusion nurses and advocating for patient safety. The newly revised Infusion Nursing Standards of Practice is the result of our efforts.

Mary Alexander, MA, ... - Click to enlarge in new windowMary Alexander, MA, RN, CRNI(R), CAE, FAAN INS Chief Executive Officer

We recognize that the Standards are essential to nursing practice and therefore must be current, relevant, and evidence-based. Therefore each of 67 standards is ranked based on available and retrievable evidence and research. You will be able to apply the Standards to your practice regardless of the setting.


INS last revised the Standards of Practice in 2006. Yet the speed with which technological advances and new research change our specialty creates the need for new standards about every 5 years. So, not long after publication of the last Standards, we began planning for the production of the 2011 version. It was decided early on that the strength of evidence would be ranked in the new Standards.


We spent a great deal of time forming a Standards of Practice committee that would bring numerous years of nursing knowledge and experience, as well as many years of infusion nursing expertise. We chose nurses who have cared for all patient populations in a variety of practice settings along the continuum of care. We asked Lisa Gorski, MS, HHCNS-BC, CRNI(R), FAAN, an INS past president, to chair the committee.


The committee met many times, in person and by phone, for more than a year. After much research and writing, numerous discussions, and many deadlines later, the committee completed their work, earning my sincere thanks and appreciation for their thoughtful reviews and unique perspectives.


In addition to adding new standards, revising others, and enhancing the infusion-related complications section, the committee developed a key feature of this edition-ranking of the strength of body of evidence. While evidence that is research based is preferred, the research on a particular topic or issue may be limited. Thus the committee developed the strength of the body of evidence with rankings that range from research supported by randomized controlled studies, to well-designed clinical trials, to consensus reports and generally accepted practices that do not have a research base. In fact, when limited research is identified to support a particular practice, it underscores an opportunity-the need for more research.


As important as the research is, however, the publication of data and outcomes is just as important. The published information is needed to validate existing practice or guide us in creating new practice models. So, as the leader in the infusion nursing specialty, INS is pleased to offer you this new resource as the new "gold standard" in infusion nursing. It's yet another example of how we continue to "Set the Standard for Infusion Care."


Mary Alexander