About us

Sepsis (also known as blood poisoning) is the immune system’s overreaction to an infection or injury. It is a rare life-threatening condition that can develop rapidly from what might be otherwise innocuous infections. Recognising it at an early stage among the huge number of ordinary infections can be a challenge even to experienced clinicians. 

Aims of the project

Sepsis is an important topic for general practice and the whole health community - it is judged that between 70 and 80 percent of cases are derived from the community and general practice, and affects all age groups with higher levels in the very young and elderly. Because of this, the Royal College of General Practitioners created the Sepsis Clinical Spotlight in 2016 and Clinical Priority in 2017. The programme of work is delivered in partnership with Health Education England and NHS England. 
The Sepsis Clinical Priority Project coordinates and focuses general practice efforts to improve outcomes from sepsis, particularly to collaborate with health professionals to reduce mortality from the illness. 

The project will achieve this by raising awareness of sepsis and the appropriate action GPs could have an impact upon this condition, reducing the burden for the individuals, their families and the wider NHS. The project coordinates GPs, ambulance and secondary care to assess and treat suspected cases of sepsis, as well as influence public messaging on the illness.

Key outputs

Forthcoming work 


Recent outputs:

Clinical news articles

Clinical team

Dr Simon Stockley

Simon is a GP Partner at Eaglescliffe Medical Practice with interests in infectious diseases, pre-hospital and emergency care. He has recently hung up his blue lights and sirens after 30 years of supporting ambulance services in a voluntary capacity. This work led him to develop expertise in medical emergencies, emergency planning and business continuity, covering areas such as pandemic influenza, sepsis, and Ebola.

He has represented the RCGP on national groups and committees for over fifteen years and is a member of NHS England’s Cross Systems Sepsis Board. For the last four years he has been helping guide policy, strategy and training for GPs and their practices around sepsis, working with College, NHS England, Health Education England and other stakeholders. He has several articles, training materials and strategy documents to support GPs tackle sepsis. 


Dr Rachel Marsden

Rachel Marsden is a First Five GP, living and working in Sheffield. She trained in the city, first as an undergraduate, before completing Academic Foundation Training and GP VTS. Rachel is a portfolio GP, working four sessions as a salaried GP alongside undergraduate teaching, OOH shifts and locuming. Her clinical interests are General Practice Emergencies, Mental Health and Lifestyle Medicine. She has been the RCGP Clinical Support Fellow for Sepsis since April 2017, a role which she thoroughly enjoys and is immensely proud to be a part of. 

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