SCOPE OF THIS CHAPTER
This procedure should be followed when anyone has a gastrostomy (PEG) feeding tube in situ and forms part of the infection prevention and control procedures.
Enteral feeding is necessary for people who cannot eat normally. Liquid feed is given through a fine tube that enters the body in one of three ways:
- Through the nose into the stomach (naso-gastric feeding);
- Directly into the stomach (gastrostomy or PEG feeding);
- Directly into the small bowel (jejunostomy feeding).
Enteral feeding poses an increased risk of infection and care must be taken to protect people from this risk.
2. Procedural Steps
|Feed should be stored according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Any feed that has been improperly stored must be disposed of.
|Hands should be cleaned thoroughly before preparing the feed or touching the equipment.
|Equipment should be handled as little as possible.
|The insertion site or stoma (the place where the tube enters the body) should be cleaned every day with water and dried well.
|To prevent blockage, the enteral feeding tube should be flushed with fresh water before and after feeding or administering medication. Enteral feeding tubes for people whose immune systems are not functioning properly (who are immuno suppressed) should be flushed with either cooled freshly boiled water or sterile water.
|Prior to connecting an administration set, hands should be washed and dried thoroughly and sterile gloves worn.
|The administration set should be checked thoroughly to make sure packaging has not been damaged and sterility compromised.
|Contaminated or non-sterile items should not be brought into the sterile field.
|Minimal handling should be used to connect the administration set to the feeding tube.
|A pack of pre-packed feed can be used for up to 24 hours in a feeding session. Feeds that have been prepared on site should not be used for more than four hours in a feeding session.
|After each session, the bags and administration sets should be disposed of as household rubbish.