HAP Sepsis Conference Highlights New Research, Best Practices
September 06, 2018
Dr. Amy Boutwell (Penn Medicine) Dr. Mark Mikkelsen, Janette Bisbee (HAP), Dr. Thomas Stoner (UPMC Pinnacle), Tish Poserina (St. Mary Medical Center), and Karen Danes (Highmark) participate in a panel discussion about the importance of effective communication in caring for sepsis patients at HAP’s 2018 sepsis conference.
Yesterday, sepsis researchers and experts, as well as clinical staff from across the state met in Harrisburg for The Hospital and Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania’s (HAP) 2018 Sepsis Conference. The statewide conference attracted approximately 200 attendees for a day of presentations and discussions about the latest research and collaborative solutions to prevent, detect, and treat sepsis.
Sepsis is the body’s life-threatening, toxic response to infection that can lead to tissue damage, organ failure, and death; and, every second counts when a patient presents symptoms. The 2018 conference theme, “Mission Possible: Early Sepsis Detection → Patient Dialogue → Successful Discharge,” emphasized topics of interest to hospitals working to reduce sepsis mortality. The program included presentations about pediatric and maternal sepsis, life after sepsis, the value of patient communication in sepsis care, and best practices to reduce sepsis readmissions.
“Sepsis is the leading reason for hospital readmissions, but statistics and patient charts do not tell clinicians everything they need to know about how it presents in patients,” said Michael J. Consuelos, MD, HAP’s senior vice president, clinical integration.
“We heard repeatedly from conference presenters and attendees that the voice of the patient is key to identifying and treating sepsis. They know why they came back to the hospital; they know how they feel. As hospitals work to lower sepsis mortality and readmission rates, the simple act of asking questions and listening to patients remains a foundational tool to help us identify and treat sepsis.”
Through HAP’s Hospital Engagement Network (HEN 2.0), HAP and participating Pennsylvania hospitals worked collaboratively since 2015 to prevent sepsis after surgery and sepsis mortality, using the latest approaches and new tactics. HAP’s Hospital Improvement Innovation Network (HIIN) hospitals continue work to decrease severe sepsis and septic shock mortality, prevent post-operative sepsis, lower readmissions following a sepsis discharge, and improve sepsis recognition for pediatric sepsis patients in emergency rooms.
During last year’s sepsis conference, HAP launched ExSEPSIS—Exiting in Excellent Care!—an initiative to promote collaborative hospital work to reduce readmission following a sepsis discharge. ExSEPSIS teaches hospitals how to formulate a plan to prevent sepsis readmissions.