Sepsis nurse seeks more recruits for UK-wide forum
Jacqui Jones wants to create a wider network of nurses to help reduce avoidable sepsis deaths
The first sepsis nurse in the UK to be appointed by an NHS trust wants more nurses to join the UK Sepsis Nurse Forum so they can share expertise and best practice.
Jacqui Jones, a sepsis nurse at South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, chairs the UK Sepsis Nurse Forum which has 66 members.
She and fellow sepsis nurse, Paul Drew, have been recruiting sepsis nurses to the forum since it started in 2013 and she is keen to expand the membership because she believes a united group can help prevent more sepsis deaths.
She said: ‘The work we have done has meant patients with sepsis can be more easily identified and the care and support they need to make a full recovery can be delivered.
‘The resources we share are invaluable and the support we give each other is vital. We are able to share experiences and what has worked, what hasn't and how we can improve.’
Sepsis occurs when an infection causes the body’s immune system to go into overdrive, setting off a series of reactions which can lead to organ failure and even death.
There are about 123,000 sepsis cases each year in England and NHS England published a plan last December to help healthcare professionals recognise and treat the condition.
NHS England’s national medical director Sir Bruce Keogh said that in many cases sepsis is avoidable and when it does occur it is often treatable if it is identified quickly.
Ms Jones, who is believed to have been the only sepsis nurse in the UK between 2010 and 2012, has also called for regional sub-groups of the forum after setting one up in the north east.
Sepsis nurses could meet on a monthly basis in their region and then report to the national forum, she said.
The nurse, who works at The James Cook University Hospital, added that staff should be given education and resources so they are able to recognise and treat sepsis in time.
Sepsis must be high on the healthcare agenda and investment is needed to sustain and continue to make improvements, she said.