In a proposal released with the 2013 State of the State address, New York state Governor Andrew Cuomo called for the statewide establishment of standardized, evidence-based protocols to facilitate rapid and accurate diagnosis and treatment of sepsis in all New York hospitals.

According to the proposal, adoption of such protocols could save 5,000-8,000 lives every year in the state of NY, and reduce many other tragic and costly consequences of sepsis. Examples of hospital systems where implementation of such proposals met with great success include California’s Kaiser Permanente where mortality was reduced by over 40%, saving over 1,400 lives since 2008, Utah’s Intermountain Healthcare sepsis initiatives which reduced mortality from 25% to 9% saving 85 lives and $38 million dollars per year, and New York’s United Hospital fund and the Greater NY Hospital Association which experienced an 18% reduction in sepsis mortality at over 50 hospitals that piloted evidence-based sepsis management protocols from 2011 to 2012, according to the report.

According to the proposal released by Governor Cuomo’s office, to fight sepsis effectively based on current evidence and best practices, hospitals should undertake all of the following measures:

  1. Establish a process for screening patients in all hospital settings to facilitate early recognition of patients with possible sepsis.
  2. Commence a countdown clock once possible sepsis has been documented.
  3. Establish clear time-based goals for providing treatment once sepsis has been identified aiming for administration of antibiotics within 1 hour, and full protocol implementation within at least 6 hours.


New York will be the first state in the US to require all hospitals to adopt best practices for the early identification and treatment of sepsis. Governor Cuomo will direct the NY Department of Health to propose regulations that will require every hospital in the state to identify and implement a sepsis recognition and treatment protocol that aligns with proven best practices and is approved by the Department of Health.

The complete recommendations of the Governor’s Office 2013 New York State of State Report (NY Rising) may be found on the New York Governor’s website here.