West Midlands Ambulance Service launch drive to cut deaths from Sepsis

One of the 47 new ambulances, carrying the Sepsis message.

The Chief Executive of West Midlands Ambulance Service has launched 47 brand new ambulances, each of which carry details of the condition and its symptoms.

It's hoped that making this information available to the public will mean more people spot the condition early and seek treatment. Anthony Marsh, West Midlands Ambulance Service Chief Executive, said:

“For a condition that takes 44,000 lives every year, it is astonishing how few people know what it is. That’s one of the reasons we want to help highlight the dangers of SEPSIS to the public.”
Unveiling the vehicles was Melissa Mead, who has campaigned to raise awareness of the condition after her one-year-old son William tragically died after a range of health providers failed to spot the condition. She was accompanied by Dr Ron Daniels, Chief Executive of the UK Sepsis Trust.
Sepsis, or blood poisoning, is the reaction to an infection in which the body attacks its own organs and tissues. If not spotted and treated quickly, it can rapidly lead to organ failure and death.  The numbers are staggering – every year in the UK, 250,000 people are affected by sepsis; 44,000 people die and 60,000 suffer permanent, life-changing after-effects. It’s more common than heart attacks and kills more people than bowel, breast and prostate cancer and road accidents combined.
Last year new guidelines on sepsis were issued to the NHS which were developed by the UK Sepsis Trust in partnership with NHS England, the Department of Health and Public Health England. West Midlands Ambulance Service is the first Trust to put the messaging on it’s vehicles. Mr added:

“I am delighted that Melissa and Dr Daniels have come along to help us unveil these posters. Our staff know better than most just how important it is to recognise the condition and to act quickly to help save lives. We have issued guidance to all of our frontline staff on what to look out for, based on the work of the charity and its research.  

"In many respects putting this poster on the side of our ambulances is one way that we can say ‘thank you’ for their help. If it saves even one life then it has been worth it, but because these vehicles will be based across the West Midlands we hope as many people as possible will see the information and take note of the warning signs, so that many more lives can be saved.
“We want everyone to know the phrase: ‘Just ask; could it be sepsis? It’s a simple question but it could save a life.’”
Melissa Mead, Ambassador for the UK Sepsis Trust, said: “It has been a pleasure from start to finish to collaborate with WMAS. Their passion and determination to help raise awareness of sepsis has been unwavering. This messaging will benefit all of those who read it, from the young to the old.

"There is no greater platform.”


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