Improving sepsis outcomes at Michigan Medicine

March 11, 2019  //  FOUND IN: Strategy & Leadership

Sepsis is a potentially life-threatening condition that occurs when an infection someone already has, such as in the skin, lungs, urinary tract or elsewhere, triggers a chain reaction throughout the body and injures other tissues and organs. Without treatment, sepsis can rapidly lead to tissue damage, organ failure and death.

According to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), more than 1.7 million adults in the U.S. develop sepsis each year, and nearly 270,000 Americans die as a result of sepsis. The CDC also estimates that one in three patients who die in a hospital have sepsis.

Teams across the organization are working to improve sepsis outcomes for patients at Michigan Medicine, where sepsis is the third most frequently coded diagnosis.

As part of improvement efforts, two units in University Hospital will be piloting the following changes starting this week:

  • Initiating nurse-driven sepsis assessment and identification screening tools
  • Launching Epic Predictive Model, which will help identify patients with sepsis more quickly
  • Developing a series of BPAs and notification mechanisms to alert clinicians when a patient screens positive for suspected sepsis
  • Utilizing a sepsis order set that contains all elements of the Hour-1 Bundle
  • Providing feedback and data to evaluate and adjust the process as necessary

Improvement efforts will be tracked by the Quality Department and changes will be made to the interventions based on feedback from faculty and staff.

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