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When Time Is Critical: The Role of Patient Movement in the Treatment of Sepsis

Posted 15 October 2021

Sepsis poses a significant healthcare challenge, especially in rural areas of the country. If not treated quickly and efficiently, it can result in organ failure, tissue damage, and, ultimately, death. Two hundred and seventy thousand people die from sepsis each year in the United States – approximately one death every 2 minutes.1 So to provide the level of supportive care necessary to treat sepsis and prevent a patient from going into shock or dying, healthcare providers need to:

  • Recognize sepsis in a patient as early as possible
  • Provide the required level of supportive care
  • Rapidly coordinate and transport patients when necessary

The not-so-subtle impact of medical transportation  when treating sepsis

When a patient suffering from sepsis arrives in the ER, the hospital may not have the level of supportive care needed for treatment, depending on the patient’s severity and the hospital’s facilities or equipment. But much like a heart attack or trauma sustained from a life-threatening injury, the speed and level of treatment in the initial hours after a diagnosis are paramount. In other words, how fast healthcare providers can get a sepsis patient access to the treatment they need will undoubtedly impact that patient’s outcome.

And many times, especially in smaller, more rural communities where greater distances separate healthcare facilities, this means arranging the proper medical transport to the right healthcare location as soon as possible. Because for every hour that treatment is delayed, a patient’s risk of death increases by almost 8%.2

Treating sepsis like the medical emergency that it is 

Once a sepsis diagnosis has been determined – whether it’s made by the healthcare team at the hospital or the first responders on location – there’s little time to assess the level of care needed. There’s even less time to figure out where that level of care can be provided and subsequently coordinate the appropriate transport, be it by ambulance, fixed wing, or helicopter. That means decisions are made quickly. And when a decision is made to transfer a patient, then transportation arrangements must be made efficiently and effectively to save precious time.

However, the fastest mode of transportation must also be weighed against the patient’s most urgent needs. Will a certain transport have the necessary equipment? Can transport and the destination hospital be able to accommodate a patient’s comorbidities? These are only some of the factors that must be taken into consideration – all the while, the clock continues to tick.

How to choose clinically justified medical transport for sepsis patients 

We can help healthcare providers save precious time when arranging medical transport for sepsis patients. Mission Control is our SaaS platform that equips providers and nurses with the tools and data necessary for selecting the appropriate medical transport method. The Mission Control team seamlessly and efficiently handle transport logistics, communicates with all stakeholders, and analyzes transport and facility resource utilization. Sepsis patients get to the treatment they need faster — and healthcare providers see improved patient outcomes.

Learn more about how Mission Control can help you improve the patient outcomes for sepsis patients here.


  1. Here’s Why Now Is the Time to Learn About Sepsis.
  2. Treatment.

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