Sepsis Awareness Month

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1 Aon Kenya Insurance Brokers Ltd Aon Hewitt Healthcare Division Sepsis Awareness Month Issue 11 September 2015 In this Issue 2 Getting to understand Sepsis 3 Stages in Sepsis Advancement 4 Diagnosis & Treatment September is Sepsis Awareness Month and this is usually marked on the 13th. It is an initiative of the Global Sepsis Alliance (GSA) to promote sepsis awareness internationally. Sepsis colloquially known as blood poisoning is common and often deadly. It remains the primary cause of death from infection, despite advances in modern medicine like vaccines, antibiotics, and intensive care. Sepsis is a global health problem that affects both the undeveloped and developing world. Global Sepsis Alliance: Goals for all countries Place sepsis on the development agenda. The Declaration will increase the political priority given to sepsis by raising awareness of the growing medical and economic burden of sepsis Ensure that sufficient treatment and rehabilitation facilities and well-trained staff are available for the acute and long term care of sepsis patients Support the implementation of international sepsis guidelines to improve earlier recognition and more effective treatment of sepsis and enable adequate prevention and therapy for all people throughout the world Mobilize stakeholders to ensure that strategies to prevent and control the impact of sepsis globally are targeted at those who are most in need Involve sepsis survivors and those bereaved by sepsis in planning strategies to decrease sepsis incidence and improve sepsis outcomes at local and national levels Risk. Reinsurance. Human Resources.

2 What is Sepsis? According to Medicine net, blood poisoning is a nonspecific term used mainly by nonmedical individuals that describes, in the broadest sense, any adverse medical condition(s) due to the presence of any toxic agent in the blood. Usually, the layperson using the term blood poisoning is referring to the medical condition(s) that arise when bacteria or their products (or both) reach the blood. Blood poisoning is not a medical term and does not appear in many medical dictionaries or scientific publications. However, when it is used, the correct medical term that most closely matches its intended meaning is sepsis. Many medical authors consider the terms blood poisoning and sepsis to be interchangeable, but the trend in the medical literature is to use the term sepsis. Sepsis is a serious illness that is very difficult to predict, diagnose, and treat. Patients who develop sepsis have an increased risk of complications and death and face higher healthcare costs and longer treatment. Causes A bacterial infection anywhere in the body may set off the response that leads to sepsis. Common places where an infection might start include the: Bloodstream Bones (common in children) Bowel (usually seen with peritonitis) Kidneys (upper urinary tract infection or pyelonephritis) Lining of the brain (meningitis) Liver or gallbladder Lungs (bacterial pneumonia) Skin (cellulitis) For patients in the hospital, common sites of infection include intravenous lines, surgical wounds, surgical drains, and sites of skin breakdown, known as bedsores or pressure ulcers. PREVENTION OF SEPSIS Sepsis is always caused by an infection, most often by bacteria, but sometimes by fungi or protozoa (such as malaria). That means that preventing infection is one of the best ways to prevent sepsis. For centuries, our natural immune system has served to protect us from severe infections. Many of the advances in modern medicine actually weaken our immune system, paving the way for severe illnesses like sepsis. These include cancer-fighting (chemotherapeutic) agents; some medicines used to treat severe rheumatism, gastro-intestinal illnesses, or to suppress the body s rejection of a new organ following an organ transplant; as well as long-term use of medicines that weaken the immune system, like cortisone. People with diabetes or chronic liver or kidney diseases are also at greater risk. In addition, more and more older people are having major operations, which further weaken their immune systems and put them at risk of developing infections and sepsis. Sepsis Awareness Month Aon Hewitt

3 Stages In Sepsis Advancement Diagram Portraiying Sepsis Progression Risk factors for sepsis The very young and the elderly are at greatest risk People who are very ill due to an infectious agent People in an intensive-care unit People with weakened or compromised immune systems People with devices such as IV catheters, breathing tubes, or other devices People with extensive burns or physical trauma People with weakened immune systems People with chronic illnesses, such as diabetes, AIDS, cancer, and kidney or liver disease Signs and Symptoms Palpitations Fever or very low temperature Fast breathing Sweating Rash Confusion Disorientation Low blood pressure Skin rash Light headness Delirium Bruising/bleeding Sepsis Awareness Month Aon Hewitt

4 Diagnosis This is done through clinical evaluation and blood tests (Full blood count, Kidney function tests, Liver function tests ect). For confirmation and selection of treatment blood cultures to detect the offending bacteria are done. Treatment Sepsis is a serious infection and most of the patients are hospitalized for treatment. Appropriate antibiotics are usually given in combinations of two or three. Organ function support is also given and this may include hydration through intravenous fluids and fever lowering drugs. Outcome (Prognosis) Sepsis is often life threatening, especially in people with a weakened immune system or a long-term (chronic) illness. Damage caused by a drop in blood flow to vital organs such as the brain, heart, and kidneys may take time to improve. There may be long-term problems with these organs. Not all patients survive an episode of sepsis. Oxygen may be given if the airways are compromised. Other medical treatments include: Medicines that increase blood pressure Dialysis if there is kidney failure A breathing machine if there is lung failure Mortality rate; Pancreaitis Sepsis 30%, Severe Sepsis 50%, Septic Shock80% Sepsis Severe Sepsis Burns Infection Septic Shock SIRS Trauma Other Relationship of Infection, SIRS, Sepsis, Servere Sepsis & Septic Shock Prevention The risk of sepsis can be reduced by getting all recommended vaccines. It is mandatory for people whose spleen has been removed. In the hospital, careful hand washing can help prevent infections that lead to sepsis. Prompt removal of urinary catheters and IV lines when they are no longer needed can also help prevent infections that lead to sepsis. Early treatment of infections and infection sites e. g wounds and burns, low immunity, diabetic and elderly patients. Source NIH: National Institute of General Medical Sciences Sepsis Fact Sheet Sepsis Awareness Month Aon Hewitt

5 Key Contacts Joseph Mwagi Wellness Manager Mary Wanjiku Wellness Officer Regina Mulei Wellness Officer - CDM About Aon Kenya Aon Kenya is a leading provider of insurance broking, risk management and human capital consulting solutions. We are part of Aon plc (NYSE: AON), a global giant in the insurance arena with more than 60,000 colleagues worldwide across 600 offices, in over 120 countries. We unite to provide our clients with distinctive client value via innovative and effective risk management and workforce productivity solutions. We stand ready to draw on our international network and the knowledge of our local experts to give you the best advise, proven solutions and attentive service. Risk. Reinsurance. Human Resources.

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