With sepsis highlighted as a global threat by the United Nations World Health Assembly in 2017, and rates of sepsis increasing in Queensland, the Clinical Excellence Division is working with key stakeholders to develop ways for clinicians to better identify and treat the potentially deadly condition.

Our Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Service (PSQIS) has developed the Recognise Early Symptoms Initiate Sepsis Treatment or RESIST Sepsis program for sepsis and launched it at their Sepsis Forum on 30 May, 2017. The program will use a phased approach, starting with adult emergency departments where around 80 per cent of all sepsis episodes present. Gold Coast University Hospital is the pilot site for a new sepsis pathway and an early recognition and escalation bundle of care will be tested using improvement methodology from the Institute for Healthcare Improvement.

The resources will be used in conjunction with PSQIS's Queensland Adult Deterioration Detection System (Q-ADDS) and the Children's Early Warning Tool (CEWT) for paediatrics. The systems help clinicians to identify a deteriorating patient and ways to escalate their care. The charts were designed in conjunction with clinicians and feature a simplistic and user-friendly design. The resources are used in almost all Queensland Health facilities and will be rolled out electronically as part of the Digital Hospital Program. Queensland Health also recently signed an agreement with the United Nations to allow the use of Q-ADDS in UN-operated facilities all over the world.

A special working group of content experts has also been developed to drive the paediatric sepsis agenda in Queensland. Paediatric sepsis presents its own challenges, with infants and children known to be at greatest risk of developing the condition. The first Statewide Paediatric Sepsis Forum was held on 21 August, 2017, uniting leaders in the field to demonstrate and discuss challenges, gaps, and strategies in preventing, recognising and treating children with sepsis. Discussions from the day are guiding the development of a Paediatric Sepsis Clinical Pathway by the Healthcare Improvement Unit under the stewardship of the statewide sepsis steering committee and the paediatric sub-committee. This resource will be used in conjunction with CEWT.

This document provides a summary of our work in the field of sepsis.

Last updated: 1 December 2017