Sepsis toolkit

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Course: Clinical toolkits
Book: Sepsis toolkit
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Date: Thursday, 7 July 2022, 2:17 AM


Provides a collection of tools, knowledge, and current guidance to support the identifying and appropriate management of patients with sepsis.

About the toolkit

Sepsis is a rare life threatening condition that can develop rapidly from what might be otherwise innocuous infections. Recognising it at an early stage among the huge number of ordinary infections can be a challenge even to experienced clinicians.

Sepsis affected 123,000 people in England in 2014, resulting in approximately 37,000 deaths. 70% of cases derived from an infection developed in the community. It is estimated that there is potential to reduce deaths by up to 10,000 per annum by the optimisation of care.

Clinical resources and guidance for practices

The Sepsis Trust has created a range of resources to support clinicians in delivering the NICE guidelines. Similarly, GP clinical systems are being equipped to support clinicians by including the physiological values considered abnormal in the NICE Sepsis Guidelines.

NICE Guidance


Further Guidance

Sepsis Trust decision support tools

The following resources are based upon the NICE Sepsis Guidance CG51

Top Tips for GPs and primary healthcare professionals

The top tips list was produced by participants at the RCGP Sepsis London workshop in November 2016.

Background information

National Early Warning Scoring system. Suggested by NCEPOD Report and others for potential use in General Practice, this has the value of providing a baseline recording of physiological variables and communicating risk and concern to secondary care colleague regarding sick adults. Its use as a screening tool in Primary Care is not established.

A Free NEWS 2 calculator can be downloaded on apple and android, which can consider hypercapnia both on and off supplemental oxygen 

GP Clinical Systems

It is noted that all GP clinical systems have aide memoire and templates for the recording of physiology useful in the documentation patients who are unwell with infection. Although there has been no formal college input to the construction of these it is advised that clinicians consider use them. Their use is important not only in documenting the severely unwell with sepsis but also when recording when the signs of sepsis were absent, and that appropriate safety netting has been given.

Ultimately it is hoped that these systems will also support the production of early warning scores, admission leaflets and patient / parent advice leaflets.

Quality Improvement

To access shared learning networks to assist you in applying practical QI methodologies to better treat this clinical area, join our QI Ready platform.

National reports and legislation

Below are some of the most significant national reports and documents relating to sepsis.

Significant national reports

International Definitions and NICE Guidance

Strategic Guidance

Patients and carers resources

Recognising Sepsis

This is a challenge for trained clinicians as the signs and symptoms can be varied and subtle at the onset of sepsis. Patients, parents and carers often ask what they should look out for.


Treating your infection without antibiotics Leaflets (with Safety netting advice) - Full range of leaflets in multiple languages can be found at the Target Antibiotic toolkit under leaflets to share with your patients.


Mobile Apps

Charitable Organisations

Meningitis Charities

Training and appraisal resources

Sepsis care and identification has been a focus of much attention with new definitions and guidelines. It is important that clinicians keep up to date.

Guidance for GPs:

At the national summit for the sepsis clinical priority in November 2018, we launched the booklet: Sepsis: Guidance for GPs (470 KB PDF), written by the RCGP Sepsis Clinical Priority team with support from Health Education England. It gives information on sepsis epidemiology, top tips for sepsis aware consultations and Sepsis leads, and clinical scenarios. The booklet is aimed to be used alongside e-learning and presentations to share sepsis learning across practices. The guidance booklet will be developed into a Train the Trainer PowerPoint presentation pack, allowing GPs to carry out workshops locally based on the findings and formats of the regional workshops undertaken by the sepsis clinical priority project over the last four years.


There are scheduled events hosted by regional faculties, which feature sepsis treatment.  

E- learning

Practice Resources

Reception Staff Training. This package from Hartlepool & Stockton Health GP Federation has been developed to assist practices in reception staff training in identifying areas of concern when taking calls from patients. It covers Chest Pain, Stroke symptoms (FAST), Breathlessness and Sepsis. It is ideally delivered by a trained practice lead for sepsis.


Building Sepsis Aware Communities

Just Say Sepsis! Sepsis, Physiology and Communication

Suspect Sepsis? Communicating with Ambulance Services

Sepsis: Spreading the news

Sepsis: Listen to us part 1

Sepsis: Listen to us part 2


Information for commissioners

The RCGP is currently working with Health Education England, NHS England and others to try and identify the areas of sepsis care which need to be in place to operationalise the recent guidance and strategic planning to create a uniform pathway for the recognition, diagnosis and definitive treatment of sepsis.