Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has developed a dedicated team to focus on a life-threatening condition.
The sepsis team at Lancashire Teaching Hospitals has been established with a focus on teaching and educating staff on wards about identifying and treating sepsis.
Sepsis is a rare, but serious complication of an infection. Sepsis can be triggered by an infection in any part of the body. The condition may develop when you are already in hospital, for example, if you have recently had surgery or have to stay in hospital for a long time.
Everybody is potentially at risk of developing sepsis; however certain people are more vulnerable such as those who have a medical condition which weakens their immune system e.g. leukaemia or HIV, are pregnant, or are genetically prone to infections.
Primarily, the team has focused on developing a sepsis screening and action tool, which has been deployed throughout the organisation, and the team are ensuring that all teams are fully trained to use this and use it consistently with all relevant patients.
This includes use of a flow chart to help assess a patient correctly. This then leads to implementation of the sepsis six pathway when sepsis is suspected (administer oxygen, take blood cultures, give IV antibiotics, give IV fluids, check serial lactates and routine bloods, and measure urine output).
Since the team started work, sepsis screening has doubled. The team is now developing sepsis mandatory training and sharing best practice throughout the NHS.
Emma Duane, Lead Sepsis Nurse at Lancashire Teaching Hospitals said: “As a team, we are very passionate about the management of sepsis, which can often be very difficult to diagnose. What makes our team so unique is that we have a clear, common goal to “reduce morbidity and mortality from sepsis”, and we recognise that no one person can achieve this goal alone.”