Sepsis early warning technology could save thousands of lives

Sepsis early warning technology could save thousands of lives
An early warning system for sepsis patients could save thousands of lives, a study by Imperial College London has found.

An early warning system for sepsis patients could save thousands of lives, a study by Imperial College London has found.
Researchers found a 24 percent drop in the number of patient deaths who were at risk of sepsis when they used the new digital alert technology at several NHS hospitals in London, according to Iran Daily.
The early warning system alerts doctors as soon as they look at a patient’s electronic records, flagging that the patient is at risk of the deadly illness and could require immediate treatment.
Sepsis occurs when the immune system damages tissues and organs as it responds to infection in the body.
The mortality rate for sepsis patients in hospitals is around 18 percent and accounts for around 48,000 deaths in the UK every year.
The researchers suggested the new technology could help drop the mortality rate below 15 percent, potentially saving thousands of lives including babies and older patients who are particularly at risk.
The study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association, involved over 21,000 patients who were deemed to be at risk of contracting the life-threatening illness.
The lead author of the research, said, "Sepsis can be deadly if it's not diagnosed and treated quickly.
“However, symptoms can be hard to spot and are similar to other conditions such as flu or a chest infection, which can result in delayed diagnosis and treatments.
“Our study showed for the first time that robust analysis of a digital alert system was associated with improvements in outcomes for patients and the system presents an opportunity to improve care for patients who may have sepsis."
This comes after the Royal College of Nursing earlier this year urged health chiefs to introduce early warning systems for sepsis amid feats that cases are being missed by the NHS.
The alert system monitors several of the key indicators of sepsis in patients, such as low blood pressure, high glucose levels and high white blood cell counts, alerting the doctor once three of these criteria are met.
Early recognition and intervention of sepsis is crucial, using antibiotics in order to prevent the rapid deterioration which it causes.
The study also showed that patients with the alert system had a 35 percent increased chance of receiving timely antibiotics compared to a group of patients who did not have the technology in place.

Nov 23, 2019 11:21