Since the launch of a new sepsis programme at Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) in September 2016, the organisation has implemented a number of initiatives aimed at boosting care services for all patients diagnosed with sepsis.

Sepsis is a medical emergency and a life-threatening condition that arises when the body’s response to a severe infection damages its own tissues and organs. If not recognised early and treated promptly, sepsis can lead to shock, multiple organ failure, and death. Those who survive sepsis are more likely to develop long-term complications including limited exercise tolerance and a decline in cognitive function.

HMC’s sepsis programme involves collaboration between the Critical Care Center and the offices of the Chief Medical Officer, Chief Nursing Officer, and Chief Quality Officer.

Several HMC departments are also involved in the preparation, development, and delivery of the sepsis programme, including the Hamad Healthcare Quality Institute, Nursing Informatics, the Clinical Information System, the Hamad International Training Center, Health Information and Communication Technology and teams from each facility.

Dr Ibrahim Mohamed Fawzy, Director of the Critical Care Center and Deputy Medical Director of the Ambulance Service at HMC, highlighted the benefits of the sepsis programme.

Our commitment to providing the very best care for patients with sepsis has been an ongoing priority for many years at HMC and the launch of the sepsis programme has enabled our care teams to work within an evidence-based framework to address this large scale condition.’

Sepsis was discussed at the recent World Health Assembly Committee A meetings held in Geneva chaired by Dr Hanan Mohamed Al Kuwari, Qatar’s Minister of Public Health.  Delegates agreed on a resolution to improve the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of sepsis. The resolution encourages governments around the world to strengthen policies and care processes in relation to sepsis.

In support of this resolution, HMC will hold a Sepsis Symposium to provide continuing professional development for healthcare professionals in Qatar. The Fourth Qatar National Sepsis Symposium will be held in Doha on 16 September 2017.

Dr Fawzy explained how the HMC programme has been the catalyst for the formation of a dedicated steering committee for sepsis which oversees the delivery of care across all HMC facilities.

Operating under the steering committee are three work streams, each providing expertise into specific population groups: paediatrics, neonates and maternity care. The formation of these committees means that HMC has a unified and consistently high-quality approach to sepsis care right across our hospital network.’

HMC Sepsis Programme Chair Dr Ahmed Labib said that education for both healthcare providers and the public is central to the success of the sepsis programme.

We have organised a number of educational activities in the past year aimed at ensuring that the skills and knowledge of our clinical teams are of the very highest international standards. These activities include the 3rd World Sepsis Day Symposium, various sepsis symposia across HMC facilities, and several events as part of Infection Control Week.’

Dr Labib also noted that a new e-learning package for sepsis is currently in development which is being designed in collaboration with Hamad International Training Center. To be launched later this year, the package will provide a dedicated sepsis resource for doctors and nurses at HMC.

Dr Labib explained that they are committed to raising awareness among the general public so that they can recognise the early signs of sepsis.

Shivering, extreme pain or discomfort, pale or discoloured skin, loss of appetite, tiredness, and shortness of breath are all potential warning signs for sepsis. If any patients experience one or more of these signs they should inform their doctor immediately.’

Moving forward with this programme, HMC aims to establish, for the first time, the Qatar National Sepsis Programme by reaching out to Primary Health Care Centers and the Ambulance Service. This will ensure any patients with sepsis will have access to the highest standards of care at any public healthcare facility within Qatar.

Visit the HMC website for more information about the Qatar National Sepsis Programme.