Clinicians can save patient lives through education, earlier detection, and management by being more aware of sepsis. The Sepsis Coordinator Network is an online resource for all healthcare professionals who wish to improve sepsis care in their facilities.
By Marijke Vroomen Durning, RN (Director of Content, Sepsis Alliance)
Sepsis and septic shock are getting more attention than ever before. Efforts from organizations like Sepsis Alliance have resulted in an increased rate of sepsis awareness among both the general public and healthcare professionals. However, increased awareness doesn’t save lives unless concrete action is taken. And this can’t be done without education about preventing, identifying, and managing sepsis.
Over the past several years, nurses have reached out to Sepsis Alliance for support in caring for their patients with sepsis. Many of the nurses are sepsis coordinators, others work with patients who have sepsis and have recognized the need for more education and sepsis guidelines and protocols. In response to the many requests, this past May, Sepsis Alliance launched the Sepsis Coordinator Network.
The Sepsis Coordinator Network is an online resource for all healthcare professionals who wish to improve sepsis care in their facility. While the majority of network members are nurses, any professional is welcome to join, and members do not need to be sepsis coordinators.
The network is still in its infancy, with much room to grow. It offers resources such as access to webinars and other information about sepsis and sepsis management. However, the strongest part of the Sepsis Coordinator Network is its real-time forums, where members can ask questions and discuss issues relating to sepsis. Current discussions include questions about how facilities are marking Sepsis Awareness Month, sepsis screening every shift, and using predictive software to identify patients who may develop sepsis, among many.
The forums are private, with posts appearing in real time. Only members of the network can access the forms and member information. The goal is to give members a safe space to discuss not only how to promote sepsis care, but how to deal with sensitive issues that might present in their workplace. For example, how might a nurse convince an reluctant administration to provide resources for a sepsis team? What type of job description should they write up for a sepsis coordinator? How can a sepsis team work with staff members who are not on board with the program? These problems are faced by nurses who, until now, had nowhere to turn to for answers.
The need for the network became obvious very quickly once it was launched. In fewer than four months, over 1,000 people from all 50 states joined. These members represent almost 1,000 hospitals and facilities, and over 300,000 patient beds.
Now that the Sepsis Coordinator Network has been established and is up and running with the help of some dedicated volunteers, the next step is to continue growing, adding information and educational resources. The network’s content is community-driven, responding to the needs and requests of its members.