Defining Sepsis

What is sepsis?
Sepsis is the body’s overwhelming and life-threatening response to an existing infection. It is essentially a chain reaction, where the body’s normal response to fight an infection becomes out of balance. It is a serious, life-threatening medical emergency that can lead to tissue damage, organ failure, and death.
Who gets sepsis?
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC), at least 1.7 million adults in America develop sepsis each year. Sepsis is a leading cause of death in the U.S. and survivors may experience physical, psychological, and cognitive side effects after recovery.
Where can I find more information about sepsis?

The Sepsis Alliance website includes information on sepsis for providers, patients, and families. You can find resources for sepsis survivors and caregivers, free clinical resources for improving sepsis care in your medical facility, and tools to get involved raising sepsis awareness.

Registry Basics

How soon will we have a national sepsis registry?
Creating an integrated National Sepsis Registry will depend on a collaborative approach between health care providers, insurers, researchers, patients, and government. The NSRI is engaging each of these critical stakeholders as we define the design and implementation plan for a National Sepsis Registry.


Who would run a sepsis registry?

It’s too soon to say how the National Sepsis Registry would operate, and who would run it. NSRI is drafting a Pathway to a National Sepsis Registry that will help answer this and other questions.

Will registries require more paperwork by doctors and nurses?
No. The design of a National Sepsis Registry will leverage data that are already collected and recorded, much of which are already submitted to various organizations and authorities.
Are legislative and regulatory changes needed to create and run a sepsis registry?
Yes. Federal funding and legislation is needed to enable the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to fund states’ existing sepsis-related data reporting tools, used to establish reporting standards. U.S. Representative Mikie Sherrill (D-N.J.) announced her intention to propose legislation to help CDC and states fund the backbone of a National Sepsis Registry.

Data Collection

Don’t we already track the quality of care delivered to sepsis patients?
Medicare and a number of states require reporting of some sepsis-related information, usually in summary form. These data are useful in the aggregate but are not helpful to understand which patients are more likely to get sepsis and which treatments work best. A National Sepsis Registry would leverage and integrate these and other existing sepsis tracking tools.
What organizations would report data to the sepsis registry?

It’s too soon to know the best approach to combine and integrate sepsis data from different organizations, in different parts of the country, into a National Sepsis Registry. There are a number of different models, and NSRI is drafting a Pathway to a National Sepsis Registry that will help answer this and other questions.


What’s the role of NSRI?
Our role is to champion the creation of a National Sepsis Registry. To accomplish this, NSRI is engaging stakeholders on the design and implementation plan for a National Sepsis Registry, pursuing pilots and initiatives, and promoting necessary legislation and regulation.
How does NSRI relate to Sepsis Alliance?
In 2020, Sepsis Alliance founded NSRI as a independent, consensus-driven, multi-stakeholder initiative, governed by stakeholders, with a mission to create a National Sepsis Registry.

Get in Touch. Get Involved.

We are seeking interested experts and organizations to guide and support creation of a National Sepsis Registry. We have a variety of workgroups and Advisory Boards where we need your help.

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