An article released by Joint Commission Resources details a program designed to improve sepsis care and reduce mortality implemented at various hospitals and care facilities in Texas.

Joint Commission Resources today released the March 2016 issue of The Joint Commission Journal on Quality and Patient Safety. The issue features an article, “The Sepsis Early Recognition and Response Initiative (SERRI),” by Stephen L. Jones, MD, MSHI, and colleagues, on the implementation of a program to improve sepsis care and reduce mortality at Houston Methodist Hospital and the 14 other facilities in the Texas Gulf Coast Sepsis Network.

Sepsis is a leading cause of death in the United States. To address this critical patient safety issue, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) now requires hospitals to report their performance on a composite process of care measure for severe sepsis and septic shock in 2016. To help meet the requirements, the site-specific implementation incorporated four key elements of SERRI:

  • Leadership
  • Education of bedside nurses and second responders
  • Incorporation of a five-item bedside systemic inflammatory response system/sepsis screening tool into electronic health record systems
  • Audit and feedback of process and outcome data

The elements were modified to accommodate differences in mission, staffing, clinical processes and medical record systems among the facilities. By January 2015, except for two new sites that joined in mid-2014, all acute care SERRI sites were screening more than 80% of inpatients whose stay was sepsis-associated. In addition, screening by site had reached 89 to 98% of sepsis-associated stays in the post-acute care sites.

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