Use of a protocolized approach to the management of sepsis can improve time to first dose of antibiotics

Pamela S. Tipler, Jeremy Pamplin, Vincent Mysliwiec, David Anderson, Cristin A. Mount*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Purpose: The Surviving Sepsis Guidelines established recommendations for early recognition and rapid treatment of patients with sepsis. Recognizing systemic difficulties that delayed the application of early goal-directed therapy, the Emergency Department and Critical Care leadership instituted a sepsis protocol to identify patients with sepsis and expedite antibiotic delivery. We aimed to determine if the sepsis protocol improved the time to first dose of antibiotics in patients diagnosed with sepsis. Materials and methods: We performed a retrospective chart review of patients with sepsis comparing the time from antibiotic order placement to the first dose of antibiotic therapy over a 3-year period. Patients who received vancomycin and ciprofloxacin underwent additional subgroup analysis, as these antibiotics were made available by protocol for use without infectious disease consultation. Results: The average time to first dose of antibiotics for the presepsis protocol group was 160 minutes, and the average time for the sepsis protocol group was 99 minutes. Fifty-eight patients received vancomycin, and 30 received ciprofloxacin, with a decrease in time of 65 minutes and 41 minutes, respectively. Conclusions: Initiation of a sepsis protocol, which emphasizes early goal-directed therapy, can improve time to administration of first dose of antibiotics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)148-151
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Critical Care
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2013


  • Antibiotics
  • Bundles
  • Sepsis


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