CATalyst for Change: How Members of WellSpan’s Central Alert Team (CAT) Are Revolutionizing Sepsis Care


  • Caitlyn Allen, MPH Patient Safety Authority



In the United States, almost 1 million patients with sepsis are admitted to hospitals annually, and the cost of managing sepsis admissions is higher than any other disease state. Early identification and treatment are critical for survival, though both are notoriously difficult as symptoms are often nonspecific.

Four years ago, WellSpan Health asked, “What if there were a way to provide real-time, meaningful clinical decision support to bedside providers to identify sepsis sooner and start lifesaving treatment?” Meet Margaret D’Ercole, Patricia Everett, Dana Gaultney, Angela Mays, Brenna Simcoe, and Cynthia Yascavage, who share how their Central Alert Team decreased mortality rates, increased bundle compliance, and proved there is a better way.

Author Biography

Caitlyn Allen, MPH, Patient Safety Authority

Caitlyn Allen ( is director of Engagement for the Patient Safety Authority and managing editor for Patient Safety, the PSA’s peer-reviewed journal. Before joining the PSA, she was the project manager for Patient Safety at Jefferson Health, where she also was the only nonphysician elected to serve on the House Staff Quality and Safety Leadership Council. Previously, Allen also was a project manager and patient safety officer for Wills Eye Hospital.


Paoli CJ, Reynolds MA, Sinha M, Gitlin M, Crouser E. Epidemiology and Costs of Sepsis in the United States—An Analysis Based on Timing of Diagnosis and Severity Level. J Crit Care Med. 2018;46(12):1889-1897. doi:10.1097/ccm.0000000000003342

Gold background with a computer with a Dr. on it, and a cell phone with a nurse in a mask, linking to another computer with an image of a nurse and Doctor tending to a patient in a bed.



How to Cite

Allen, C. (2021). CATalyst for Change: How Members of WellSpan’s Central Alert Team (CAT) Are Revolutionizing Sepsis Care. Patient Safety, 3(3), 74–79.
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