Global HealthNoncommunicable DiseaseWiRED Module

September is Sepsis Awareness Month

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September is Sepsis Awareness Month

WiRED’s Modules Teach Sepsis A to Z

By Allison Kozicharow and Meghan Spirito; Edited by Elizabeth Fine

Any infection can lead to sepsis — a life-threatening emergency — yet few people know what it is.

Sepsis is a complication of infection that can lead to tissue damage, organ failure and death. The condition constitutes a global healthcare problem, and despite advances in modern medicine such as vaccines, antibiotics and intensive care, it is the primary cause of death from infection, especially in underserved countries.

Populations in at-risk communities often have little if any information about sepsis. WiRED International offers a general Sepsis Module and a Maternal Sepsis Module (part of our Mother and Child Health Series) in order to educate health workers and all audiences about this dangerous and relatively unknown health concern.

Although the COVID-19 pandemic is currently top of mind, it is important to remember the impact of other health conditions and diseases that still affect people worldwide. WiRED’s materials offer health information free of charge that teaches people how to avoid infections, practice good hygiene and know the signs and symptoms of medical conditions such as sepsis. The World Health Organization estimates that sepsis affects more than 30 million people globally. September is Sepsis Awareness Month — a good time to learn about sepsis through WiRED’s modules.

The Relationship between COVID-19 and Sepsis

Sepsis and COVID-19 share many functional changes and clinical features. One study examined how sepsis care, which has a well-established history, can apply to COVID-19 management. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that sepsis can result from COVID-19.

The Global Sepsis Alliance explains further:

Now that more scientific data are available on COVID-19, the Global Sepsis Alliance can more definitively state that COVID-19 does indeed cause sepsis. Signs of multi-organ injury typical of sepsis occur in approximately 2-5% of those with COVID-19 after approximately 8-10 days. Many patients affected by COVID-19 will die from sepsis and its complications. It is therefore vital to know and recognize early signs of sepsis, and initiate prompt treatment when diagnosed. Timely intervention saves life and organ function.