Those of us in the healthcare industry understand how potentially devastating sepsis can be. In fact, it’s the number one cause of death in U.S. hospitals. But not all of us know that these deaths are preventable 80% of the time — a truth that has been borne out in some amazing clinical successes.
Anyone involved in patient care knows how serious sepsis can be. It affects some 1.5 million patients a year and is the number one cause of 30-day unplanned hospital readmissions.1,2 Far less apparent is the impact of Severe Sepsis/Septic Shock (SEP-1) performance measure compliance on preventing these costly and potentially life-threatening return visits. Less obvious, that is, until now.
Some of you may recall attending the recent CMS educational webinar held at the end of February 2018 during which they reviewed the 5.3A Protocol. But with all the new information being presented it was easy to overlook a very important point — one that could have a huge impact on patient health, the reputation of hospitals, as well as individuals charged with sepsis management.
CMS has announced that, starting in July of this year, SEP-1 overall hospital performance will be publicly reported beginning with the July 2018 Hospital Compare release.
When sepsis sets in, minutes count before shock and even death become a real possibility. But now there’s an innovative solution to help healthcare organizations detect signs of sepsis early and prevent potentially devastating complications.
Sepsis is a life-threatening medical emergency, and the leading cause of death in U.S. hospitals. It can escalate very quickly — patient mortality increases by 8% every hour treatment is delayed1. We're hosting a webinar to show how your hospital can detect and treat sepsis early, and save patient lives. You can register here.
When I was at the Fall CHIME conference in San Antonio, I attended a presentation by a customer of ours (Licking Memorial Health Systems in Ohio) on the topic “Leveraging Actionable Data to Combat Sepsis." With four excellent sessions to choose from, I attended this session because I was interested in the topic and because we offer multiple solutions to help with sepsis management. I always like to hear the customer perspective whenever possible, but I had no idea of what I was really walking into that day.
Treating patients with sepsis is challenging enough without confusion about which protocol to use or whether you are following it correctly. Clinicians depend on clarity as they care for critically ill patients. When guidelines are replaced or revised, those changes need to be incorporated into their workflows. Those decisions, however, aren’t always made with awareness of the work required to implement them, by people further down the food chain.
Years ago, I was working on an oncology unit when I picked up a nosocomial infection which morphed into sepsis. Halfway through a twelve-hour shift, I dropped to my knees and couldn’t walk. My blood pressure was dropping, I had chills and was shaking uncontrollably. My temperature was 104.3F, which made my head feel like it was going to explode. Luckily, I made it to the emergency room (with help from some coworkers and a shaking wheelchair).
We may be living in an era of medical miracles, but when it comes to sepsis, we’ve got a long way to go. It’s the most expensive condition in the U.S. healthcare system, with a human and financial cost that’s mind-boggling to me.
Many hospitals are gearing up to start another reporting period for electronic Clinical Quality Measures. As you may know, with proposed CMS changes released in April, the requirements were reduced for 2017 reporting. The final rule is not out, but historically CMS follows through with proposed rules, so we can plan for these changes.