With the implementation of the new sepsis coding methodology -- the use of Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (SIRS) codes and the reporting of organ failure -- the number of cases reported as sepsis has increased. This is good in terms of more specificity in those instances where patients are admitted with the above. Sepsis is a life-threatening condition and can be more severe when the body uses its antibodies to fight off the more severe condition of sepsis when it relates to SIRS and organ failure. Having the ability to reflect more accurately what is going on with sepsis patients allows for the healthcare industry to provide ways to combat these cases. It doesn't mean that our healthcare services have quality issues. Capturing the data accurately reflects what is really going on with the patient who has a case of severe sepsis.
Lenore M. Whalen Registered Health Information Technician Health information management consultant Mesquite, Texas