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WellSpan Health has won a prestigious award from two national health care standards organizations, the National Quality Forum (NQF) and The Joint Commission.

WellSpan, the parent organization of WellSpan Ephrata Community Hospital, received The 2019 John M. Eisenberg Patient Safety and Quality Award for its Central Alert Team, which started in 2017 and works to quickly detect and treat sepsis.

The organizations hand out three awards annually, for individual, local and national achievements. WellSpan received the local award. Past recipients included Mayo Clinic, New York Presbyterian Hospital and UPMC, which received the award in 2004. 

The Sepsis Central Alert Team is a group of registered nurses working from a remote "bunker" who continuously monitor patients for signs of sepsis at five WellSpan hospitals. When the electronic health record system detects symptoms of sepsis in a patient’s vital signs, the team contacts the patient’s physician or nurse.

The system estimated that the team has saved 350 lives so far, and said its flagship hospital in York has a sepsis survival rate in the top 1% of its peers nationally.

Modern Healthcare story on WellSpan: "Using remote surveillance, interventions to treat sepsis patients early"