Patient group directions: The application and integration of knowledge in advancing nursing practice

Martin Christensen


Background: The introduction of Patient Group Directions (PGD) has changed significantly the way in which nurses can now administer prescription only medicines as a one-off for patients requiring this level of service. PGD’s are a written authority to administer drugs to patients that are not identified at the time of treatment.

Aim: The aim of this project was to develop a PGD for use within an Outreach team to administer colloid boluses to patients presenting with hypovolemia.

Method: Using a case exemplar this paper will discuss the development of a PGD using aspects of transitional change theory to highlight the potential barriers that were encountered.

Implications for Practice: The implications for this PGD are wide reaching. First it now enables members from the nursing Outreach team to administer colloid fluid boluses to a prescribed patient cohort without the need for prescription. Second, it ensures the deteriorating patient has interventions initiated in a timely and appropriate manner to reduce inadvertent admission to high care areas. Last, it will improve inter-professional team-working and communication so much so that collaborative patient care reduces health costs and identifies earlier those patients requiring substantially greater nursing and medical input.

Conclusion: The experience of developing a working PGD for fluid administration has meant that the Outreach team is able to respond to patients in a more effective way. In addition, it is the experience of developing this PGD that has enabled the team to contemplate other PGD’s in the execution of Outreach work.

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Journal of Nursing Education and Practice

ISSN 1925-4040 (Print)   ISSN 1925-4059 (Online)

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