Intravenous (IV) therapy is a method of transferring liquid pharmaceuticals directly into patients' veins. Many nursing programs include IV therapy training as part of the clinical courses. However, IV therapy certificate programs are available for medical professionals looking for refresher courses or entry-level training in the practice. Many schools offering such programs also require students to be CPR certified.
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Certificate in IV Therapy
IV therapy certificate programs are offered by community colleges, vocational schools, and health science centers. They are often only available for working healthcare professionals, including licensed practical nurses, registered nurses, and certified medical assistants. Certification requirements for IV therapists vary by state, but students should ensure that any program they choose meets state training requirements.
Some degrees or certificate programs that might act as educational prerequisites are available for medical assistants, nurses, and physicians' assistants. Many schools offering such programs also require students to be CPR certified and provide evidence of personal liability insurance. Other common requirements include a drug screening and background check.
Most IV therapy certificate programs are comprised of one or two courses incorporating both the theory and practical practices of intravenous therapy. Specific topics covered in those courses include:
- IV therapy skills
- IV therapy equipment
- Overview of IV medications
- IV therapy and patient care
Popular Career Options
A certificate in IV therapy alone does not provide students with the requisite training necessary to enter into a career as a healthcare professional. It is instead designed as a supplementary certificate, often intended for those individuals who were not trained in IV therapy practices during previous training programs. An intravenous therapy certificate can be useful for:
- Licensed practice nurses
- Registered nurses
- Medical assistants
- Psychiatric technicians
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, registered nurses were projected to see a 16% growth in employment opportunities from 2014-2024. The average wage for these workers was $71,000 in May 2015.
Different states have their own regulations for intravenous therapy training and certification. For example, California's Board of Vocational Nurses and Psychiatric Technicians offers a list of accredited locations where LPNs and psychiatric technicians can enroll in approved IV certificate programs. Other IV certificate programs offer graduates with certification in the practice.
IV therapy training programs are appropriate for certified healthcare professionals interested in continuing education. Students in an IV therapy training program learn how to use IV equipment and document the administration of IV therapy.