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Reducing Sepsis Mortality in Ohio Through Early Recognition, Appropriate Intervention

The OHA Board of Trustees identified reducing sepsis mortality in Ohio as one of the key focus areas for OHA and Ohio hospitals. Sepsis is the body's overwhelming and life-threatening response to infection that can lead to tissue damage, organ failure and death. In other words, it's your body's over active and toxic response to an infection. Sepsis impacted an estimated 41,000 Ohioans in 2017. Early recognition and treatment can reduce the morbidity and mortality of sepsis. 

OHA Sepsis Initiative Physician Advisor

OHA is honored to have James O'Brien, MD, MS, serve as a physician champion to the OHA’s statewide Sepsis Initiative. O’Brien is vice president of Operations and Population Health at OhioHealth. He graduated from Ohio State University College of Medicine and competed his internship and residency in internal medicine at Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, where he also served as chief medical resident.

He completed a fellowship in the Division of Pulmonary Sciences and Critical Care Medicine and obtained a Master of Science degree in Basic Biomedical Science from the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center. O’Brien has lectured extensively on sepsis and serves on the national board of the Sepsis Alliance. Leading efforts to decrease severe sepsis and septic shock through early recognition and intervention is a passion of O’Brien’s demonstrated by his strong commitment to patient safety and quality.

OHA Statewide Initiative - Focusing on Early Recognition and Early Intervention

The OHA statewide Sepsis Initiative comprises more than 124 hospitals committed to reducing sepsis mortality in Ohio. Since OHA's initiative launched in fall 2015, an estimated 4,869 lives have been saved.

For hospitals participating in the initiative, below are links to the gap analysis and sepsis bundle components that will be measured. 

OHA's quality programs team has compiled professional literature on sepsis. Click here to view the information. 


OHA's quality programs team offers no-cost educational opportunities for member hospitals and clinical teams to gain insight into new trends and methods to treating sepsis.

All calls are 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. OHA records all the education sessions and coaching calls for hospitals. See the archive below.

Session topics and dates are subject to change. Email OHA's Dorothy Aldridge for call-in information and check out OHA's events calendar for updated schedules.

OHA SOS "Signs of Sepsis" Campaign

OHA launched a statewide campaign, SOS - Signs of Sepsis, to educate public, caregivers and health care providers across the continuum of care about early recognition of the signs of sepsis and early intervention. 

More than 87 percent of cases arrive at the hospital door, while sepsis emerges in the balance of patients affected after they arrive at the hospital for the original ailment, such as pneumonia.

The OHA SOS campaign focuses on those who can speed the recognition of sepsis throughout the continuum of care including caregivers, first responders and home health providers, hospital ERs and long-term care facilities.

Signs of Sepsis (Sepsis Alliance's TIME Campaign)

T – Temperature higher or lower
I – Infection
M – Mental decline 
E – Extremely ill 

OHA SOS Campaign Toolkit

Access OHA's member and partner toolkit materials:

Campaign Partners

We are proud to work with the following organizations to promote the signs of sepsis: To join OHA's campaign contact Jim Guliano, vice president of Quality Programs, OHA by email.