Developed By: Committee on Quality Management and Departmental Administration
Last Amended: December 13, 2020 (original approval: October 23, 2019)
The administration of prescribed medication is a component of the practice of medicine. In the medical practice of anesthesiology, physician anesthesiologists personally administer medications and may delegate the administration of medications by some routes to nurses, nurse anesthetists, anesthesiologist assistants or other assistants as permitted by federal and state statute and regulations.
Routes of medication administration include:
Oral, Nasal, Conjunctival, Sublingual or Buccal, Rectal, Vaginal, Topical, Subcutaneous, Transcutaneous, Inhaled, Intramuscular, Intravenous, Intraarterial, Intraosseal, Epidural, Subarachnoid, Perineural
All medication administration via parenteral routes should follow the guidelines of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Safe Injection Practices to Prevent Transmission of Infection to Patients1 and labeling guidelines2 set by the American Society of Anesthesiologists.
Administration of medications includes the preparation of the medication from the packaged form into a form suitable as individually required by the needs of patients, including aseptically drawing up fluid medications into syringes, reconstituting and diluting sterile products, as well as preparing fluids in bags or bottles by attaching tubing for patient use. These activities are distinct from compounding and not subject to compounding regulatory guidance. Compounding does not include mixing, reconstituting, or other such acts that are performed in accordance with directions contained in approved labeling provided by the product’s manufacturer and other manufacturer directions consistent with that labeling.
1 Safe Injection Practices to Prevent Transmission of Infections to Patients. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. https://www.cdc.gov/injectionsafety/ip07_standardprecaution.html. Published April 1, 2011. Last accessed May 9, 2019.
American Society of Anesthesiologists Committee on Equipment and Facilities. ASA Statement on Labeling of Pharmaceuticals for Use in Anesthesiology. Approved by ASA House of Delegates on October 27, 2004; last amended October 28, 2015.