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Quality Corner: Improving Sepsis Care in a Critical Access Hospital

Sepsis is a life-threating condition that leads to the deaths of more than 210,000 people across the nation every year. Amanda Karrels, RN, CPHQ, Clinical Coordinator at Sturgis Hospital, recently won the Quality Showcase Winner award from Monument Health. Amanda discovered that while providers where delivering excellent care, they did not always order the sepsis bundle at the appropriate time or use the sepsis documentation. To make sure that caregivers and providers were ordering the bundle when appropriate, Amanda put together a team to collect feedback and deliver targeted education about the importance of the sepsis bundle.

Amanda’s goal for this project was to provide consistent high-quality care to patients with sepsis including both those who were admitted to the Sturgis Hospital and those who were transferred to a higher level of care by following the Sepsis Bundle Management Protocols. Some action steps Amanda and her team put into place included: a formal performance improvement project using the “Plan, Do, Check, Act” methodology, provider and nurse peer feedback on chart reviews and great care, regular reporting of data to medical and nursing staff, targeted education during meetings, creation of reference sheets for the Emergency Department and Urgent Care, and continued measurement and participation in the HQIC database for reporting sepsis patients.

Amanda and her team had amazing results! They started the project in July and within 5 months they had 100% compliance for all the sepsis measures. Amanda says the key to her success was open communication, education and demonstration to our providers, and their collaboration and willingness to improve in this measure. The SDAHO quality team continues to witness quality staff at hospitals across South Dakota that go above and beyond to improve patient outcomes at their facilities. Congratulations Amanda for the hard work and dedication to quality work in your facility.  



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