Sepsis tools

On this page you will find standardised sepsis tools that have been developed in consultation with NSW Health frontline clinicians and other experts.

The sepsis pathways align with the relevant Between the Flags (BTF) Standard Observation Charts and support clinicians to 'Recognise, Resuscitate and Refer' for initial sepsis management.

Sepsis pathways

Adult: use for adults 16 years and older
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Paediatric: use for infants and children less than 16 years of age
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Maternal: use for women from 20 weeks gestation to 6 weeks post-partum
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Newborn: use for the episode of care associated with the newborn's birth (use the paediatric pathway for readmission after birth)
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The sepsis pathways and label are available for purchase in printed form. NSW Health staff can order and print forms via Stream Solutions (a division of Toll) and more information is available on the HealthShare Intranet.

Sepsis pathway label

The CEC can provide permission to non-NSW or private health service organisations to use the sepsis pathways under copyright. All requests require completion of a formal copyright request form.

Digital pathways

The digital eMR adult sepsis pathway has been developed by NSW eHealth, the Clinical Excellence Commission (CEC) and Western Sydney local health district (LHD) in consultation with a multidisciplinary Expert Advisory Group.

The eMR sepsis pathway is an electronic solution for alerting, escalation, diagnostics and prescribing to guide and support clinicians in the emergency and inpatient settings.1,2,3,4. This is an important transition from the paper-based sepsis pathway to a digital pathway to provide consistent, safe, and reliable sepsis care.

A trial of the adult pathway was completed at Prince of Wales Hospital in 2021. The Sydney Children's Hospital Network is leading work on a digital paediatric sepsis pathway.

Antibiotic guidelines

For guidance on antibiotic use, please refer to Therapeutic Guidelines: Antibiotic and/or locally endorsed guidelines when treating adult, paediatric, neonatal, or maternity patients with suspected or confirmed sepsis.

Newborn antibiotic guideline for early and late onset of sepsis

Use this guideline for the selection and administration of antibiotics for newborns during the birth episode of care (under review).

Download PDF


Adult sepsis antibiotic administration table

Use this administration table to guide the reconstitution and administration of intravenous antibiotics for sepsis in adults.

Download PDF

Blood culture guidance

Use these blood culture guidance documents to assist with when and how to take blood cultures.

Select the relevant guidance for blood culture sampling.

Adult
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Paediatric
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Neonatal
Download

References

  1. Li, L, Walter, S.R, Rathnayake, K, et al., 2018, 'Evaluation and optimisation of risk identification tools for the early detection of sepsis in adult inpatients', Report to the Clinical Excellence Commission (CEC), NSW, Australia. Australian Institute of Health Innovation, Macquarie University, Sydney.
  2. Li, L, Rathnayake, K, Green, M et al, 2019, 'Improving the Performance of Clinical Decision Support for Early Detection of Sepsis: A Retrospective Observational Cohort Study', Studies in health technology and informatics, 264, 679–683.
  3. Shetty, A, Murphy, M, Middleton-Rennie, C, et al., 2021, 'Evaluation of an augmented emergency department electronic medical record-based sepsis alert', Emergency Medicine Australasia, Oct;33(5):848-856.
  4. Ackermann, K, Baker, J, Green, M, et al., 2022, 'Computerized Clinical Decision Support Systems for the Early Detection of Sepsis Among Adult Inpatients: Scoping Review', Journal of Medical Internet Research, 24(2).