Doha, 14 September 2023: The Qatar National Sepsis Program is marking World Sepsis Day with an educational symposium for healthcare professionals and a poster display activity engaging hospital staff across Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC). The aim is to instill greater awareness of important clinical protocols relating to sepsis prevention, diagnosis and treatment.
Sepsis is a critical medical condition that occurs when the body's response to an infection spirals out of control, leading to organ dysfunction and failure. It is a silent but deadly killer, claiming millions of lives each year around the world. However, with increased awareness, early detection, and prompt treatment, many of these lives can be saved.
Dr. Abdulsalam Saif, National Sepsis Lead, and Division Head of the Medical Intensive Care Unit at HMC, explained that anyone with an infection can get sepsis, but that there are some people more at risk: “Some people are more likely to get an infection that could lead to sepsis, for instance people who have recently had surgery or a serious illness, women who have just given birth, had a miscarriage, premature babies or older adults, and people with chronic diseases such as diabetes, as well as people with a weakened immune system, such as those having chemotherapy treatment or who recently had an organ transplant. It is vital that good medical systems are in place to monitor these patients in hospitals – but also family members looking after a patient at home should not ignore the symptoms of sepsis.”
The signs and symptoms of sepsis include:
Slurred Speech or Confusion
Extreme Shivering or Muscle Pain/Fever
Passing No Urine All Day
It Feels Like You‘re Going to Die
Skin Mottled or Discolored
Dr. Abdulla Al-Ansari, Chief Medical Officer at HMC explained the significance of the Qatar National Sepsis Program: “This Program is a collaboration with the Ministry of Public Health, Sidra Medicine, Primary Health Care Corporation and others that have joined HMC in the global fight against Sepsis. The national sepsis prevention efforts, which are guided by the Qatar National Sepsis Program, are essential to the comprehensive approach to reduce the risks of Sepsis. We have significant changes in implementing prevention and management strategies to reduce the risks of hospitalized patients getting sepsis and ensure timely intervention for patients who become septic. By working together can we ensure a more unified, evidence-based approach to help those people more at risk.”
Ms. Mariam Al-Mutawa, A/Chief Nursing Officer at HMC, said that nurses play a significant role in identifying patients with sepsis: "Because nurses generally spend a longer time with their patients, their unique role lends itself well to monitoring patients. We have invested a lot in training, particularly front-line nurses, in understanding the pathology of this condition, and targeted screening is already integrated as part of routine patient assessments and patient care rounds. This ultimately resulted in well-trained nurses across the system being able to competently apply the sepsis six bundle within the targeted golden hour.
The Sepsis Six Care Bundle, originally developed by the UK Sepsis Trust, refers to a set of six critical tasks (including oxygen, cultures, antibiotics, fluids, lactate measurement and urine output monitoring) that should be instituted for the patient within one hour by frontline staff. The Sepsis Six Care Bundle has been shown to significantly reduce the relative risk of death when delivered to patients with severe sepsis within one hour.
“Apart from imbedding the updated Sepsis Six bundle within our clinical practice, we have also arranged for the modification of alert notification for staff to be more specific and therefore more efficient. We continue our staff and public education efforts with the aim that more knowledge will help ensure better patient care and outcomes,” added Dr. Abdulsalam.
World Sepsis Day is observed around the word annually on September 13 to raise awareness about this life-threatening condition that affects millions of people worldwide. In 2023, this important global health initiative continues to shed light on sepsis, its prevention, early recognition, and treatment, under the theme "Stop Sepsis Save Lives”. This effort is supported by practical education and awareness programs. One of these events is the well-established Qatar National Sepsis Symposium, now in its tenth year, that is scheduled on 14 September and is a key professional education highlight of the year.