If I Could Change One Thing to Improve Sepsis Care

Session Description: 

It is frequently said that many roads lead to sepsis. It is critical to improve sepsis care to decrease morbidity and mortality for the estimated 1.7 million adults in the U.S. who develop sepsis every year. Team collaboration is a key component of sepsis care, with a focus on early recognition and treatment. Learn from five healthcare providers in various clinical roles and practice settings across the continuum of care as they share one thing they would change to improve sepsis care. Each speaker will share their answer to this important question in a 10-minute presentation. 

This course was originally recorded in September 2020 as part of the 2020 Sepsis Alliance Summit.

Target Audience

Nurses, physicians, pharmacists, emergency responders, healthcare management teams, and other healthcare staff may benefit.

Learning Objectives

At the end of the presentation, the learner should be able to:

  • Identify current opportunities for improvements in sepsis care.
  • Discuss ideas to improve sepsis care across the continuum of care.
  • Apply experiences and evidence presented to make changes in individual clinical practice.
Course summary
Available credit: 
  • 1.25 Participation
  • 1.60 RN CE Contact Hours
    Provider approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing, Provider Number CEP17068.
Course opens: 
Course expires: 


Infection Control Officer, Jefferson Health New Jersey

Dr. Cindy Hou is an infectious diseases specialist and serves as the Infection Control Officer for Jefferson Health New Jersey and Jefferson Medical Group. Locally, she is the physician lead for the hospital’s Antimicrobial Stewardship Committee, Infection Control Committee, Infection Prevention Task Force and Sepsis on the Floors Task Force. In 2018, she was the recipient of a national award as a Hero of Infection Prevention in Patient Safety from the Association of Professionals in Infection Control (APIC), and in 2019, she became the first infectious diseases physician to serve on the national Sepsis Alliance’s Advisory Board. Dr. Hou graduated from Yale University. She received her MA and MBA from Boston University, and D.O. from the University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine. She is fellowed by the American College of Osteopathic Internists, the American College of Physicians, and the Infectious Diseases Society of America.

Rommie Duckworth, BS, LP

EMS Coordinator, Ridgefield Fire Department

Rom Duckworth is a dedicated emergency responder, author, and educator with more than thirty years of experience working in career and volunteer fire departments, hospital healthcare systems, and private emergency medical services. Recipient of the American Red Cross Hero award, Sepsis Alliance Sepsis Hero award, and the EMS 10 Innovators award in addition to numerous awards and citations for excellence in education and dedication to service, Rom is currently a career fire Captain and paramedic EMS Coordinator for Ridgefield (CT) Fire Department and Founder of the New England Center for Rescue and Emergency Medicine. An Advisory Board member for the Sepsis Alliance, Rom is the author of chapters in more than a dozen EMS, fire, rescue, and medical textbooks as well as over 100 published articles in fire and EMS journals, magazines, and websites. Rom is an international leader in emergency services education.

Bridget Gallagher, GNP, MSN

Vice President, Americare

Ms. Gallagher is an accomplished home care professional with over 25 years of experience. As  Vice President of Americare Inc, she oversees all aspects of both the Licensed Home Care Agency as well as Americare Therapy Services Program. Throughout her career, she has displayed an unwavering commitment to Community Based Services. Being a true New Yorker all her life, she received her BSN and MS in Nursing Administration and Advance Practice Nursing: Elderly degree from New York University. Ms. Gallagher has served on the Home Care Association Board of Trustees. She was also on the American Telemedicine Association Executive Board Committee and the Leading Age Home and Community Based Services Cabinet. She has been awarded by the Advance Magazine for Nurses as the Best Nurse Manager in 2002, the Home Care Association Advocacy/Giraffe Award in 2011, and the Leading Age Carl S Young Advocacy Award in 2012, and the HCA Ruth F. Wilson Award in 2015.

Mark Smaili, Pharm.D.

Inpatient Pharmacist (Pediatric and Neonatal Medicine), Kaiser Permanente Santa Clara Medical Center

Mark Smaili, Pharm.D., is a Clinical Pharmacist who specializes in Emergency Medicine at Mills Peninsula Medical Center in Burlingame, CA, and Neonatal and Pediatric Medicine at Kaiser Permanente Santa Clara Medical Center in Santa Clara, CA. Mark received his Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences and Doctorate of Pharmacy from University of the Pacific. He completed his Pharmacy Practice Residency at Stanford Healthcare. As one of the pioneering members of the Emergency Department Pharmacist Program at Mills Peninsula Medical Center, Mark is deeply involved with the Sepsis Committee, Stroke Committee, and Emergency Department Partnership Council. Mark has collaborated with multiple departments on quality improvement projects and endeavors to advance patient care and safety. He has provided presentations to Physicians, Pharmacists, Nurses, and additional Ancillary Staff. Additionally, he precepts Pharmacy Students and Residents that rotate at Mills Peninsula Medical Center and Kaiser Permanente Santa Clara Medical Center. His areas of interest include Emergency Medicine, Neonatology, Pediatrics, and Infectious Disease.

Christa Schorr, DNP, MSN, RN, NEA-BC, FCCM

Associate Professor of Medicine and Clinical Nurse Scientist, Cooper University Healthcare

Christa is a Clinical Nurse Scientist at Cooper University Hospital and Associate Professor of Medicine at Cooper Medical School at Rowan University. She has practiced clinically, directed critical care quality improvement and clinical research. Christa received a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Thomas Jefferson University, Master of Science in Nursing and Doctorate of Nursing Practice degrees from Drexel University. Dr. Schorr has lectured nationally, internationally, and has authored or co-authored over 180 peer-reviewed articles, book chapters and abstracts. Working with the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, her team developed content for the Surviving Sepsis Campaign (SSC) performance improvement software, used worldwide. She served as faculty for Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM) SSC Collaboratives and NJ, RI and MD statewide collaboratives. Currently she is the SSC Guidelines Committee Group Head for long-term outcomes and goals of care, serves as the Vice-Chair for the Thrive Patient and Family Committee and is the SSCM’s Quality & Safety Committee liaison to the CDC Heathcare Infection Control Practices Advisory Committee.

Provider approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing, Provider Number CEP17068 for 1.6 contact hours.

Other healthcare providers will receive a certificate of attendance for 1.25 contact hours.

Medical Disclaimer

The information on or available through this site is intended for educational purposes only. Sepsis Alliance does not represent or guarantee that information on or available through this site is applicable to any specific patient’s care or treatment. The educational content on or available through this site does not constitute medical advice from a physician and is not to be used as a substitute for treatment or advice from a practicing physician or other healthcare provider. Sepsis Alliance recommends users consult their physician or healthcare provider regarding any questions about whether the information on or available through this site might apply to their individual treatment or care.

Available Credit

  • 1.25 Participation
  • 1.60 RN CE Contact Hours
    Provider approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing, Provider Number CEP17068.
Please login or register to take this course.

This activity includes:

  • Pre-test
  • Downloadable slides
  • Pre-recorded presentation
  • Post-test (80% passing rate)
  • Evaluation

All components must be completed to earn a certificate of attendance. This course can be completed at your convenience.