Dr Tom Frieden, Director at the CDC – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and thus one of the top public health officials in the United States, supports the initiative of World Sepsis Day. As new Ambassador he states the importance of increasing public awareness for sepsis and his willingness to help spreading the word.
“Sepsis can be devastating to patients and their families. Even survivors of sepsis can suffer life-long impacts of their illness,” said CDC Director Tom Frieden, M.D., M.P.H. “While we need to increase awareness and early detection of sepsis to protect patients and save lives, we also need to understand the causes of sepsis so that we can prevent it whenever possible.”
In 2011, a report by the CDC stated that the number of hospitalizations for sepsis in the US more than doubled between 2002 and 2008; and that in 2008 more than 120,000 Americans died from sepsis.
Sepsis is what happens when the body’s response to an infection spins out of control, destroying its own organs and tissues. This leads to shock, organ failure and death. It is among the leading causes of death in the United States and around the world, taking more lives than heart attacks or the most-common cancers. The sooner treatment begins, the better the chances of survival for sepsis patients.
Unfortunately, this and many other aspects of sepsis remain poorly understood by doctors and medical professionals. Moreover, the term sepsis is largely unknown to the general public.
The CDC announced its aim to implement the term “sepsis” on the A-Z-index of their website, and will consult with research centers and relevant New York State agencies on the regulations governing those changes.
Background Information Sepsis and World Sepsis Day
Worldwide, sepsis is one of the most common deadly diseases. Globally, approximately 25 million people suffer from sepsis. About 8 million of these people die; 20% of sepsis survivors struggle with cognitive and physical impairments. With proper hygiene, better prevention, early detection and immediate treatment, mortality and impairments can be significantly reduced. This would save up to 800,000 lives each year.
To address the issue of sepsis and decrease its burden worldwide, a number of international federations of medical societies and individual national professional societies took the initiative to create the Global Sepsis Alliance (GSA). In 2012 the GSA, a registered charity and non-profit organization, initiated the first World Sepsis Day, taking place every year on September 13.
World Sepsis Day is supported by leading sepsis experts from all over the world and a number of highly renowned Ambassadors such as Sir Liam Donaldson, Chair of the World Alliance for Patient Safety of the WHO, Didier Pittet from Geneva, leader of the international campaign of the WHO “clean care is safer care”, and Reinhold Messner, the world’s most famous mountaineer.
The main targets to be achieved by 2020, set out in the World Sepsis Declaration, are as follows:
– Reduce the incidence of sepsis through effective prevention strategies
– Increase sepsis survival rates for children and adults in all parts of the world
– Raise awareness and increase understanding of sepsis among healthcare professionals and the general public
– Provide better access to suitable rehabilitation services for people everywhere
– Track and measure the global burden of sepsis and the positive impact of sepsis control and management interventions
The head office for World Sepsis Day is hosted by the publicly funded Center for Sepsis Control and Care at Friedrich Schiller University in Jena, Germany.
World Sepsis Day Head Office
Center for Sepsis Control & Care
Friedrich-Schiller University of Jena
Erlanger Allee 101
07747 Jena // Germany