Why have you personally gotten so involved in the effort to fight sepsis?
Throughout my career I have seen patients who have sepsis. As an ICU nurse you can see the devastation that it brings not only to the patient but to the patient's family members. Back eight years ago, I decided I wanted to do something more than teach nurses about sepsis or implement sepsis screening protocols. I want to engage on the national level and local community level, on improving community awareness of sepsis.
I had met many people who had lost people to sepsis, including young children. Or they had significant changes to their lives, such as loss of limbs, due to sepsis. I wanted to educate families that when a family member is sick, they should tell their provider, "I am concerned about sepsis." If it is recognized quickly, there are good outcomes for the patient.
I started the Illinois Sepsis Challenge 5K Run and Walk six years ago. It just took place the last Saturday in July. Myself, the nurses that work for me in my department, and my family all put the program together. All proceeds benefit the Sepsis Alliance. They create programs and materials for providers, videos, ads, pocket cards, etc. Being a board member for the Sepsis Alliance, over the last five years I have spoken nationally on sepsis at different events.