The Surviving Sepsis Campaign (www.survivingsepsis.org) has updated its best clinical practices for patients with severe sepsis or septic shock.6 Sixty-eight international experts worked to update the campaign’s 2008 guidelines. For example, the update includes a strong recommendation for the use of crystalloids (e.g. normal saline) as the initial fluid resuscitation for patients with severe sepsis.
The campaign, a collaboration of the Society of Critical Care Medicine and the European Society of Intensive Care Medicine, estimates 400,000 lives could be saved per year worldwide if 10,000 hospitals were committed to its recommendations and if even half of eligible patients were treated in conformance with the campaign’s quality bundles. The campaign also tries to develop strategies for improving the care of septic patients in settings where healthcare resources are limited.
Larry Beresford is a freelance writer in Oakland, Calif.