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What sepsis is:

  • Sepsis is a toxic response to infection that is attributed to killing more than 270,000 Americans every year; more than breast cancer, lung cancer, and prostate cancer combined (CDC, 2020). Approximately 1.7 million adults in America develop sepsis and 1 in every 3 patients who dies in an American hospital is attributed to sepsis (CDC, 2020).
  • Sepsis is a medical emergency that can occur to anyone, anytime, and requires early detection and treatment. Sepsis develops when the chemicals in the immune system releases into the bloodstream to fight an infection cause inflammation throughout the entire body instead.
  • It arises when the body’s response to an infection injures its own tissues and organs. It may lead to shock, multiple organ failure, and death, especially if not recognized early and treated promptly.

What causes sepsis and who is at risk?

  • Any type of infection can cause sepsis at any time to anyone. However, some individuals are at higher risk such as those who are very young, elderly (65+), those taking medications that affect their immune system, and individuals with chronic disease.

What are the signs and symptoms of sepsis?

  • Confusion or disorientation.
  • Shortness of breath.
  • High heart rate.
  • Fever, shivering, or feeling cold.
  • Extreme pain or discomfort.
  • Clammy or sweaty skin.

How Can I prevent Sepsis?

  • Practice good hygiene: handwashing, keeping cuts clean until healed, dental hygiene.
  • Prevent Infections: Take to your doctor or nurse about how to prevent infections such as taking good care of chronic conditions and getting all recommended vaccines.
  • Know the signs and symptoms!
  • Take antibiotics as directed: Take antibiotics only for bacterial infections as prescribed by your doctor. Do not stop antibiotics just because you feel better, make sure to continue entire dose of antibiotics to prevent antibiotic resistance.
  • Act fast: If you believe your or someone you know has sepsis, seek medical care immediately. Sepsis is a medical emergency and time matters!

What is offered at PVHMC:

  • Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center is accredited as a national facility by the joint commission for the identification and treatment of sepsis. PVHMC doctors and nurses are trained to immediately recognition sepsis upon emergency department triage and intervene with evidence-based intervention upon detection. PVHMC is a national leader in providing a multifaceted approach to well-rounded sepsis care from the emergency department throughout the hospital.

How does PVHMC set the bar?

  • At PVHMC, we have a system in place to rapidly identify and treat septic patients within minutes of arrival. Early identification and treatment are based upon the most up-to-date evidence-based practice that is reviewed by a team of medical professionals to ensure all patients always receive the highest quality of care.
  • A “gold alert” is activated throughout the hospital upon initial sign of a septic patient. This alert allows all departments to be aware that a septic patient is present and will require rapid care. The patient will be brought within the main ED and a multitude of medical professionals from nurses, doctors, phlebotomists, and radiology technicians will be at bedside ready to provide rapid treatment. The patients care will be closely monitored from triage until hospital discharge to ensure that the signs of sepsis are caught and taken care of through early identification and treatment.

For more information visit the following: CDC and Sepsis alliance