Newswise — CHICAGO, Aug. 26, 2014 – Sepsis is the tenth leading cause of death in the United States, and new research published in the Journal for Healthcare Quality (JHQ) shows that educating clinicians about expediting diagnosis and administration of antibiotics can reduce sepsis patient mortality and lower hospital costs. JHQ is the peer-reviewed publication of the National Association for Healthcare Quality (NAHQ,

Researchers at Detroit Medical Center reported the results of the implementation of an initiative called the Surviving Sepsis Campaign,, an international effort to formulate guidelines to improve sepsis treatment and reduce mortality through sustainable change and physician education. The clinical goals were to optimize timeliness of antibiotic administration and create a better continuum of care from the emergency department to acute and critical care settings.

Four hospitals in the Detroit Medical Center system participated in the study and 150 patients met the eligibility criteria. The intent of the study was to learn if sepsis education resulted in improved frequency and timing of interventions.

Results of the sepsis education effort showed improved frequency of blood culture testing before antibiotic administrations and significant improvement – a 50 percent reduction -- in the time to antibiotic treatment from a mean of 182 minutes to 92 minutes.

“While guidelines provide a roadmap for patient care, successful implementation relies on consistent patterns of clinician practice to achieve optimal outcomes,” said lead author Maria Teresa Palleschi, RN, DNP, Detroit Medical Center. “Educating staff is essential to the process of improving patient outcomes, and the results of our study showed the relationship between education and sampling of lactate and blood cultures as well as timeliness of antibiotic administration.”

About the Journal for Healthcare QualityThe Journal for Healthcare Quality (JHQ) is the first choice for creative and scientific solutions in the pursuit of healthcare quality. JHQ is peer reviewed and published six times a year. JHQ publishes scholarly articles targeted to leaders of all healthcare settings, leveraging applied research and producing practical, timely, and impactful evidence in healthcare system transformation covering topics in: quality improvement, patient safety, performance measurement, best practices in clinical and operational processes, innovation, leadership, information technology, spreading improvement, sustaining improvement, cost reduction, and payment reform.

About NAHQFounded in 1976 and covering a full spectrum of healthcare specialties, the National Association for Healthcare Quality (NAHQ) is an essential and interactive resource for quality and patient safety professionals worldwide. NAHQ’s vision is to realize the promise of healthcare improvement through innovative practices in quality and patient safety.

NAHQ’s 12,000-plus members and certificants benefit from cutting edge education and NAHQ’s unique collective body of knowledge, as well as opportunities to learn from a diverse group of professionals. These resources help assure success for implementing improvements in quality outcomes and patient safety, navigating the changing healthcare landscape, and serving as the voice of quality. Visit to learn more.


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