David Fitzpatrick and colleagues review an online survey of how nurses and doctors perceive the use of a pre-hospital sepsis screening tool by ambulance clinicians
Many hospitals struggle to implement the full sepsis care bundle, but research suggests that many patients with sepsis are transported to hospital by ambulance. In 2011, the Scottish Ambulance Service introduced a pre-hospital sepsis screening tool (PSST) to expedite sepsis identification and care delivery. However, ambulance clinicians have reported varying degrees of interest and enthusiasm from hospital staff during handover. Therefore, an online survey was set up to investigate medical and nursing staff perceptions and experiences of the introduction of a PSST. This article discusses the results, which show that participants perceive the PSST reduces time to treatment, improves continuity of care, benefits patients and is accurately applied by ambulance clinicians, but which also highlight problems with communication. The delivery of in-hospital and pre-hospital sepsis care is challenging, but simple measures such as improving and standardising communication and alert systems between ambulance services and receiving hospitals could improve the clinical effects of a PSST.
Emergency Nurse. 22, 1, 18-24. doi: 10.7748/en2014.04.22.1.18.e1294Correspondence
This article has been subject to double blind peer reviewConflict of interest
Received: 21 February 2014
Accepted: 13 March 2014
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