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Shropshire hospitals bid to cut sepsis deaths

Telford | News | Published:

Health officials at Shropshire's two main hospitals say they have improved the ways patients with blood poisoning are screened and diagnosed.

Princess Royal Hospital, Telford, left, and Royal Shrewsbury Hospital

There are around 150,000 cases of sepsis in the UK every year and approximately 44,000 deaths. At least four patients at Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust die each month from the condition.

It is hoped that the improvements, learnt as part of a five-year partnership with Virginia Mason Institute in Seattle, will significantly reduce the number of people who die from Sepsis at SaTH. Sepsis arises when the body's response to an infection injures its own tissues and organs.

It leads to shock, multiple organ failure and death, especially if not recognised early and treated promptly.

Staff nurse Viola Jones said: "When challenged to improve screening and recognition of sepsis we found some people didn't have a clear understanding of what Sepsis is. To combat this we produced a simple leaflet that explains what sepsis is that comes with an informative quiz to ensure the information learnt in the leaflet is retained. Staff are encouraged to submit their answers and are then presented with a certificate of achievement.

"The information leaflet has proved a huge success and we have been asked to share it with The UK Sepsis Trust and a number of other hospital trusts. Every member of staff on the Acute Medical Unit AMU has completed the quiz and we hope to roll it out to every employee in the near future. The leaflet has helped empower staff and make them more aware of Sepsis, which as a result improves screening and recognition of Sepsis for our patients."

Dr Edwin Borman, Medical Director at SATH, said: "Sadly, in our hospitals, around four patients a month die from Sepsis, along with other cases where the patient does not reach us in time. We want to reduce that number by at least half and believe that we can do so by increasing awareness of the condition and improving treatment."

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