The UK Sepsis Trust An awareness campaign to improve public recognition of sepsis will be launched across the UK this year, carried out by the Department of Health and Public Health England.
Working in collaboration with the UK Sepsis Trust, the initiative aims to better public understanding of the blood poisoning condition that requires quick diagnosis and treatment to effectively combat.
Approximately 150,000 adults and children in the UK are affected by sepsis annually, with around 44,000 of those dying each year. If not identified and treated quickly, survivors of sepsis can be left with life-changing disabilities.
According to a report released by the Parliamentary Health Service Ombudsman in 2014, better sepsis care could save 13,500 lives every year and save the NHS £314m annually.
The public awareness drive – called Just ASK: could it be sepsis? – hopes to equip the general public with knowledge of the condition so that they might recognise it and prompt healthcare professionals (HCPs) to fast-track diagnosis of the time-sensitive illness.
Similarly, the national campaign will partner with Health Education England to prompt HCPs – through THINK: could it be sepsis? – to actively check for the condition when assessing patients.
A leaflet entitled ‘Spotting sepsis in children’, containing sepsis facts and a checklist, will play a central role in reaching parents, and was developed from a resource trailed in the South West by NHS England in response to the death of a young boy from sepsis in 2010.
Dr Ron Daniels, chief executive of the UK Sepsis Trust, said: “Better public awareness will mark a huge step forward for sepsis care in the UK, and the pledge must lead the way for further investment in educating health professionals and supporting those affected by the condition.”