New York State Public Health Law requires that nasogastric tubes for patient feeding must be the smallest possible and not exceed 12 Fr in diameter unless medically indicated.*
In addition, the feeding tube must be made of a soft, flexible material and specifically manufactured for nasogastric feeding.*
In the United Kingdom, administering enteral therapy into a misplaced feeding tube is considered a Never Event.*
Never events are defined as ‘serious incidents that are wholly preventable because guidance or safety recommendations that provide strong systemic barriers are available at a national level and should have been implicated by all healthcare providers’.*
|NHS England Patient Safety Domain. Revised never events policy and framework; 2015. https://www.england.nhs.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/never-evnts-pol-framwrkapr.pdf. Accessed 20 May 2019.|
Of the 1.2 million small bore feeding tubes placed, about 0.1-0.3% of patients die as a result of blind misplacement.*
About 1.2–2 percent of small bore feeding tubes that are placed blindly at the bedside enter the airway undetected. *
* Krenitsky, J. Blind Bedside Placement of Feeding Tubes: Treatment or Threat? Practical Gastroenterology. 2011; March, 32-42.|
There are nearly 249,000 adult patients who rely on home enteral nutrition.*
This accounts for 60% of home care patients with enteral access devices. *
Mundi, M. S., Pattinson, A. , McMahon, M. T., Davidson, J. and Hurt, R.
T. (2017), Prevalence of Home Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition in the
United States. Home Nutrition Support, 32: 799-805.