Great Western Hospital's sepsis team scoops national patient safety award

Posted: December 8, 2015

Health Business Awards winners

A team of nurses, doctors and pharmacists who tackle the life-threatening condition of sepsis at Great Western Hospital in Swindon have won a national award in recognition of their lifesaving work. 

The multidisciplinary team were given Patient Safety accolade at the 2015 Health Business Awards, which were held in London on Thursday 3 December.

The Patient Safety Award is awarded to the NHS trust which has "made great strides in providing a safe hospital environment for patients and has taken action to reduce hospital acquired infections and mortality rates."

Speaking before being announced as winners, Nic Lythell, Specialist Sepsis Nurse, said: "We are delighted to have been nominated for the Patient Safety Award. 

"Sepsis is one of our Trust's safety priorities and we work hard to identify and treat sepsis as quickly as possible and before life-threatening damage has been caused.

"The fact that more and more patients are surviving sepsis is testament to the vital work that we are doing. Speed really does save lives."

Sepsis, previously known as septicaemia or blood poisoning, is the body's reaction to an infection where it attacks its own organs and tissues.

It can start from any minor infection, such as a chest or urine infection or an infected bite or wound and is difficult to diagnose.

HB Awards logo 300The sooner treatment begins, the better the outcome and if not treated within six hours, it can be fatal. Over 37,000 people lose their lives to sepsis each year in the UK.

Sepsis is one of the Trust's Sign Up to Safety priorities and since 2013, staff have been working hard to adopt international best practice in diagnosing, treating and caring for patients with signs of sepsis.

Between May 2014 and March 2015, 830 patients were identified with severe sepsis at GWH - a third more than had been expected.
Currently, 80 per cent of sepsis patients now survive, which is significantly better than the national average of 65 per cent.

The annual Health Business Awards showcases success stories from within the health sector, while also celebrating the significant contributions made each year by organisations and individuals that work inside and alongside the NHS. 

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