How can I get ahead of sepsis?

As a patient, specific steps can be taken to reduce your risk of sepsis, including caused by COVID-19, such as:

1 Prevent infections

Talk to your healthcare professional about steps you can take to prevent infections that can lead to sepsis. Some steps include:

Icon: Chronic

Take good care of chronic conditions

Icon: Vaccination

Get recommended vaccines

2 Practice good hygiene


Wash your hands


Keep cuts clean and covered until healed

3 Know the signs and symptoms of sepsis

A patient with sepsis might have one or more of the following signs or symptoms:

Icon: Heart Rate

High heart rate or low blood pressure

Icon: Fever

Fever, shivering, or feeling very cold

Icon: Confusion

Confusion or disorientation

Icon: Short Breath

Shortness of breath

Icon: Pain

Extreme pain or discomfort

CDC Sepsis Sweat Droplets

Clammy or sweaty skin

A medical assessment by a healthcare professional is needed to confirm sepsis.


Sepsis is a medical emergency. If you or your loved one has an infection that’s not getting better or is getting worse, ACT FAST. Get medical care IMMEDIATELY either in-person, or at minimum, through telehealth services. Ask your healthcare professional, “Could this infection be leading to sepsis?” and if you should go to the emergency room for medical assessment.

Fact Sheet

Infographic: 4 Ways to Get Ahead of Sepsis


Four Ways to Get Ahead of Sepsis (Print Only) pdf icon[PDF – 1 page]

Discover the four ways you can get ahead of sepsis.