Date of Graduation

Winter 12-15-2017

Document Access

Project/Capstone - Global access

Degree Name

Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)



Sepsis is a potential life-threatening emergency that can become fatal if left unidentified and treated. The body immediately initiates an inflammatory response cascade throughout the body. If sepsis is left untreated, it can rapidly lead to organ failure and death. In an effort to reduce the number of patients who decline due to sepsis in the hospital, effective and efficient sepsis protocols need to be implemented. This life-threatening condition affects millions of Americans annually making it essential for nursing practices, knowledge, and the understanding of sepsis to be current. Assessment of the microsystem was done using the 5 P’s Assessment tool: purpose, patients, professionals, process, and patterns.

In an effort to understand barriers, a root cause analysis was done to identify any discrepancies with compliance in the usage of the sepsis screening tool. In order to ensure nurses are correctly documenting the sepsis screenings in a timely manner, CNL students worked with the Director of the Sepsis Committee to develop a “Sepsis Screening Observation Checklist.” Additionally, a chart review audit was done by utilizing a “Sepsis Chart Screening Data” tool in which CNL students were able to review electronic medical records (EMR) of 100 patients on five different units. Furthermore, CNL students assessed knowledge of sepsis through a questionnaire.

Results showed that nurses felt that vitals signs were reported in a timely manner 50% of the time. Results also concluded the greatest contributor to delays in treatment of sepsis are labs and only 38% of nurses feel adequate educational resources are provided in regards to sepsis. It is imperative for nurses to have the proper knowledge and understanding of sepsis as it is vital in early identification of sepsis. Additionally, early and appropriate interventions are essential in ensuring patient safety is top priority.

Available for download on Tuesday, December 21, 2027

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