Determination of an acceptable practice standard for peripheral intravenous (PIV) insertion as well as insertion success rates of inpatient medical/surgical registered nurse (RN) staff at Children's Hospital, Omaha, NE, was examined. The prospective study consisted of a non-randomized sample of 249 total i.v. placements. The inpatient medical/surgical registered nurse (RN) staff and patients were used as study participants. The data were collected on three separate occasions over 20 months by self-report. The cumulative insertion data revealed 53% successful PIV cannulation on the first attempt, 67% within two attempts, and 91% within four attempts. Additionally, the medical/surgical RN staff successfully placed 85% of the medical/surgical PIVs. As a result of this study, the standard of practice is now defined as no greater than four attempts at insertion by RN staff. Future data should be collected in order to substantiate a defined standard for PIV placement.