Cannulation – A step-by-step procedural guid


In order to ensure patient safety and comfort, all clinicians performing intravenous cannulation must ensure proficiency in their technique. Competency is essential.

This module is the last in the series of 5 modules on venepuncture and cannulation. The 5 modules are:

  • Indications and vein selection
  • Equipment selection
  • Special considerations for infants and children
  • Finding a vein
  • Venepuncture – A step-by-step procedural guide
  • Cannulation – A step-by-step procedural guide

This module provides a step-by-step guide on how to perform intravenous cannulation, common complications, and the appropriate interventions when complications do arise.


Prior to undertaking cannulation, clinicians should check local policies and access the appropriate practical training and competency assessments. Only those deemed competent should perform intravenous cannulation.

Learning Objectives

At the end of this module participants will be able to:

  • Describe the step-by-step procedure for performing intravenous cannulation.
  • Identify how the five moments of hand hygiene are applied to cannulation procedures.
  • List the possible complications of intravenous cannulation and understand what to do if they should arise.

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