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New national clinical guideline on adult sepsis published

By Catherine Reilly - 13th Sep 2021

Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly has welcomed the publication of a new and fully updated national clinical guideline to help healthcare professionals recognise and treat sepsis and septic shock in patients. Today is World Sepsis Awareness Day.

This initiative was led by a group from the HSE National Clinical Programme on Sepsis and supported by the Department’s Clinical Effectiveness Unit. The guideline was quality assured by the National Clinical Effectiveness Committee (NCEC) and developed in line with international best practice.

Minister Donnelly said the guideline built on work over recent years to improve sepsis management. “I see the publication of this guideline as a further advance in improving the standard and consistency of care for patients with sepsis across the country. “

Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan said: “Sepsis is a global public health crisis and a leading cause of preventable mortality, with 20 per cent of all deaths worldwide associated with sepsis. Vigilance and rapid response saves lives and protects quality of life in survivors. It is gratifying that we have seen a 26.5 per cent reduction in age-adjusted mortality in Ireland since 2011 and I commend the HSE National Sepsis Programme on this achievement.

“I greatly welcome this latest national clinical guideline, which was developed by a multi-disciplinary guideline development group, led by Dr Vida Hamilton and supported by the HSE National Sepsis Programme. It takes the best international clinical evidence and provides updated recommendations for the recognition and care of adult and maternity patients with sepsis and septic shock in Ireland.

“It has been quality assured by the National Clinical Effectiveness Committee in line with international best practice and has undergone public consultation and international expert review.”

Chief Nursing Officer Ms Rachel Kenna said: “The development and implementation of NCEC National Clinical Guidelines is only possible with the expertise and commitment of clinicians at the front line. This latest guideline covers the very important topic of sepsis and septic shock. We know that well developed and implemented clinical guidelines can help improve care and outcomes for patients and their families.

“This World Sepsis Day, I am pleased to welcome this new and updated guideline on sepsis in adults and maternity patients and the HSE’s plan for the sepsis in children. I see these as key tools to help staff at the front line manage this complex condition.”

The guideline is available at the following link –

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