World Sepsis Day – Far West LHD raising awareness

It is World Sepsis Day (WSD) tomorrow (Saturday, 13 September) and the Far West Local Health District is promoting the awareness of sepsis with a number of staff activities next week.

World Sepsis Day (WSD) is an initiative of the Global Sepsis Alliance to raise awareness of sepsis which is one of the most common deadly diseases. It is one of the few conditions to strike with equal ferocity in resource-poor areas and in the developed world.

In the developed world, sepsis is dramatically increasing by an annual rate of between 8-13 % over the last decade, and now claims more lives than bowel and breast cancer combined. Reasons are diverse, but include the aging population, increasing use of high-risk interventions in all age groups, and the development of drug-resistant and more virulent varieties of infections. In the developing world malnutrition, poverty, lack of access to vaccines and timely treatment all contribute to death.

“Despite its remarkable incidence, sepsis is practically unknown to the public and is often misunderstood as blood poisoning,” said Ms Linda Sorum, Director Clinical Governance, Far West LHD.

“Sepsis arises when the body’s response to an infection injures its own tissues and organs. It may lead to shock, multiple organ failure, and death, especially if not recognised early and treated promptly,” she said.

Sepsis remains the primary cause of death from infection despite advances in modern medicine, including vaccines, antibiotics, and acute care with hospital mortality rates between 30 and 60%.

“The goal is to reduce sepsis incidence 20% by 2020. The Far West Local Health District is actively working towards this using a number of strategies including the Clinical Excellence Commission’s SEPSIS KILLS program,” said Ms Sorum.

Staff will be taking part in a number of activities in the District on Monday, 15 September to raise awareness about sepsis and promote the SEPSIS KILLS program as well as celebrate the gains against this deadly disease.

You will find information about sepsis and the program at your local health facility or at the Clinical Excellence Commission website at



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