Guidelines for Procedures by Medical Students:
Students are frequently involved in the performance of procedures on patients. Usually, these procedures are of negligible risk and require little supervision once an appropriate level of competence has been achieved. Other procedures, however, carry significant risk of harm and must always be closely supervised by an individual competent to perform the procedure. The paragraphs that follow distinguish between these two categories of procedures and describe the type of supervision required.
Those procedures carrying significant risk include any procedure requiring written consent from the patient as well as central venous line placement, external or internal jugular vein puncture, joint aspiration, and arterial line placement. Any student performing one of these procedures must be directly observed by a competent supervisor. The supervisor must be present and must be prepared to take over in the event of any difficulty.
Less rigorous supervision is required for those procedures carrying minimal risks, which are listed below. Medical students should be observed by a qualified supervisor to assure that they are competent before performing any of these procedures. A Qualified supervisor must be readily available while these procedures are being performed.
1. arterial puncture
2. peripheral intravenous line placement
3. intramuscular injection
4. insertion of nasogastric tube
5. bladder catheterization
6. suturing of skin
7. incision and drainage of superficial abscesses