11.6 Checklist for Oxygen Therapy

Use the checklist below to review the steps for “Managing Oxygen Therapy.”

View an instructor demonstration video on Administering Oxygen[1]:


Disclaimer: Always review and follow agency policy regarding this specific skill.

  1. Verify provider order or protocol.
  2. Gather supplies: pulse oximeter, oxygen delivery device, and tubing.
  3. Perform safety steps:
    • Perform hand hygiene.
    • Check the room for transmission-based precautions.
    • Introduce yourself, your role, the purpose of your visit, and an estimate of the time it will take.
    • Confirm patient ID using two patient identifiers (e.g., name and date of birth).
    • Explain the process to the patient and ask if they have any questions.
    • Be organized and systematic.
    • Use appropriate listening and questioning skills.
    • Listen and attend to patient cues.
    • Ensure the patient’s privacy and dignity.
    • Assess ABCs.
  4. Perform a focused respiratory assessment including airway, respiratory rate, pulse oximetry, and lung sounds.
  5. Employ safety measures for oxygen therapy.
  6. Connect flow meter to oxygen supply source.
  7. Apply adapter for tubing.
  8. Connect nasal cannula tubing to flow meter.
  9. Set oxygen flow at prescribed rate.
  10. When using a nasal cannula, place the prongs into the patient’s nares and fit the tubing around their ears. When using a mask, place the mask over the patient’s mouth and nose, secure a firm seal, and tighten the straps around the head. If using a non-rebreather mask, partially inflate the reservoir bag before applying the mask. Place the patient in an upright position as clinically appropriate.
  11. Evaluate patient’s response to oxygen therapy including airway, respiratory rate, pulse oximetry reading, and reported dyspnea.
  12. Institute additional interventions to improve oxygenation as needed.
  13. Adapt this procedure to reflect variations across the life span.
  14. Assist the patient to a comfortable position, ask if they have any questions, and thank them for their time.
  15. Ensure safety measures when leaving the room:
    • CALL LIGHT: Within reach
    • BED: Low and locked (in lowest position and brakes on)
    • SIDE RAILS: Secured
    • TABLE: Within reach
    • ROOM: Risk-free for falls (scan room and clear any obstacles)
  16. Perform hand hygiene.
  17. Document the assessment findings. Report any concerns according to agency policy.

  1. Open RN Project. (2021, November 11). Administering oxygen [Video]. YouTube. Video licensed under CC-BY-4.0. https://youtu.be/m5nRt4_Re-E


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Nursing Skills - 2e Copyright © 2023 by Chippewa Valley Technical College is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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