New York State Sepsis Initiative Reduces Pediatric Death Risk by 40%

In 2013, New York State (NYS) began requiring hospitals that care for patients with sepsis to implement and follow evidence-based clinical practice protocols for the identification and treatment of this life-threatening condition. Hospitals must submit data to NYS on their sepsis protocol adherence and clinical outcomes. This state-based program is the first of its kind in the nation.

In a study recently published in JAMA, researchers at the University of Pittsburgh examined the outcomes of children treated for sepsis in 54 NYS hospitals. They found that completion of a sepsis protocol within one hour decreased the odds of death by 40%. However, as reported in this UPMC press release about the research, “When only parts of the protocol were completed within an hour – for example, giving fluids but not testing for infection or giving antibiotics – the patients did not fare better. The finding held only if the entire protocol was completed in an hour.”

Patient Safety & Quality Healthcare (PSQH) magazine asked the study’s senior author Christopher W. Seymour, MD, about the best use for the findings. Seymour says, “Hospitals will need to look at their own practices and figure out how they could best provide timely care to pediatric patients with sepsis.  Being able to promptly recognize sepsis, or a patient who is at risk of developing sepsis is Part 1.  Part 2 is making sure you have the equipment and institutional policies and expertise to be able to execute bundled care within the given time frame.”

MLMIC supports the continued efforts of New York hospitals to rapidly recognize and treat sepsis and improve clinical outcomes.