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Public urged to be sepsis aware

A patient who developed the life-threatening condition sepsis is appealing for the public to learn more about it.

Martin Davies, 65, developed the condition following surgery.

He’s supporting World Sepsis Day on 13 September and efforts at Poole Hospital to raise awareness of the condition. Martin, 65, developed sepsis after undergoing surgery at the hospital for a bowel condition in 2008.

The Sepsis Trust charity estimates that of the 150,000 patients who develop sepsis each year, 44,000 die. Early recognition of the condition and treatment is vital in reducing this number.

martin davies“I was in intensive care after the operation and things were improving, but then I developed sepsis,” said Martin, pictured right.

“I was in intensive care for three weeks, and spent a total of six weeks in hospital.

“My life was saved by the NHS and I had tremendous treatment at Poole Hospital – from the clinicians, nurses, microbiologists, everyone involved in my care.

“I’d never heard of sepsis before I developed it, but have since learnt a lot about it.

“More people die from sepsis than prostate, bowel and breast cancer put together each year – it’s vital that public awareness is raised about the condition.

“It could save lives.”

Laura Smith is the hospital’s lead nurse for sepsis and part of a team tasked with improving the detection and treatment of patients with sepsis.

laura smith dave williams simulationJoined by Dave Williams, the hospital’s simulation lead, Laura will be in the dome entrance of the hospital on Wednesday (13 September) from 8am-4pm giving out information and demonstrating how simulation training using a special manikin helps teach staff about the signs to look for.

Figures for August show that nearly nine out of 10 (89 per cent) of patients were treated with potentially life-saving antibiotics within an hour of arriving at Poole Hospital. A recent survey by the BBC found the national average to be around 63 per cent.

“Sepsis is a serious condition, and raising public awareness of the symptoms is an important way in which we can help reduce the number of deaths each year,” said Laura.

“By improving awareness, as well as how the NHS treats patients with suspected sepsis, we really can save lives.”

Visit the NHS Choices website for a list of symptoms to look out in both children and adults, as well as actions to take if you are concerned.

Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Longfleet Road, Poole, Dorset BH15 2JB. Tel: 01202 665511

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