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Grant to help fight sepsis

From left: Tim Leddy; Joyce Infante, director of development and communications at VNS; Mary Gadomski, director of business development and community relations at VNS; and William T. Smith, president and CEO of Aging in America Inc.

White Plains-based Visiting Nurse Services in Westchester Inc. (VNSW) has been awarded a $25,000 grant from Aging in America Inc. to support the integration of a sepsis screening, education and intervention tool into its clinical practice. The funding will enable the nonprofit agency’s home care workforce to screen more than 10,000 patients in their homes annually as part of its best practices in patient care. 

The VNSW Foundation Inc. provided a matching grant of $25,000 to underwrite staff training in identifying and managing sepsis in the home and in utilizing the screening tool for optimal patient outcomes.

Sepsis is the body’s extreme response to an infection. It happens when an infection you already have triggers a reaction throughout your body. Instead of just attacking the infection, your body attacks its own organs. Infections that most frequently develop into sepsis include staphylococcus, E coli and some types of streptococcus. 

The Centers for Disease Control reports that there are about 1.5 million cases of sepsis in the U.S. each year with 250,000 ending in death. About one-third of the deaths occur in hospitals. 

VNSW President and CEO Tim Leddy said, “With the majority of our patients at high risk for developing sepsis, this is a pivotal moment for our agency to step in with early intervention tools to stem the tide of this serious condition at the point of care at home.”

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