Sepsis severity and cost of care linked to timing of diagnosis
Using retrospective observational analysis of de-identified data, researchers set out to characterize the burden, outcomes and costs associated with sepsis patient care in U.S. hospitals. The study featured database information for patients over 18 years old with a hospital discharge diagnosis code of sepsis between January 1, 2010, and September 30, 2016. The authors also analyzed hospital billing records.
In total, researchers evaluated records for approximately 2.5 million patients, with a mean age of 65 years. They found an overall mortality rate of 12.5%, with higher mortality rates occurring in more severe sepsis cases. Not only did mortality rates rise with sepsis severity (5.6% for patients with sepsis without organ dysfunction compared to 34.2% for patients with septic shock), but also costs increased significantly. When sepsis was present at admission, related costs were $18,023 versus $51,022 for cases where sepsis was not present at admission. The authors conclude that methods to improve early identification of sepsis may help to reduce the severity and economic impact of sepsis in the U.S.