DefinitionDeaths with septicemia as the underlying cause of death.
ICD-10 codes: A40-A41
NumeratorNumber of deaths due to septicemia
DenominatorTotal number of persons in the population
Why Is This Important?Septicemia, commonly referred to as sepsis or "blood poisoning," is the eighth leading cause of death among New Jersey residents and twelfth in the U.S.
How Are We Doing?The age-adjusted death rate due to septicemia is lower than it was a decade ago but has not declined significantly since then. In New Jersey, nearly 2,000 deaths each year are due to septicemia. In the total population and among each racial/ethnic group, males have higher death rates than females. The age-adjusted death rate due to septicemia is highest among Blacks in New Jersey. County rates per 100,000 population (age-adjusted) range from a low of 12 in Hunterdon to a high of 26 in Essex.
How Do We Compare With the U.S.?The New Jersey age-adjusted death rate due to septicemia is 1.6 times that of the nation as a whole. It is one of only two leading causes of death for which New Jersey's rate is higher than that of the U.S.
New Jersey has the fifth highest age-adjusted death rate due to septicemia among all 50 states and D.C. [https://wonder.cdc.gov/ucd-icd10.html ^1^] New Jersey is the northernmost state in a contiguous cluster of states with high sepsis mortality in the Southeastern and mid-Atlantic U.S.[https://ij-healthgeographics.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1476-072X-9-9 ^2^] A 2013 county-level study found clusters throughout the Midwest, mid-Atlantic, and the South.[https://www.pennmedicine.org/news/news-releases/2013/may/new-penn-medicine-research-ide ^3^]
What Is Being Done?Under state law, New Jersey hospitals are required to submit uniform data to the New Jersey Department of Health on health care facility-associated infections. The Department reviews and analyzes these data and reports the results in New Jersey's annual [http://www.nj.gov/health/healthcarequality/health-care-professionals/submit-reporting/hais/index.shtml hospital performance report]. (Note that not all cases of septicemia are acquired in a healthcare setting.)
Health Program InformationSepticemia refers to the presence of a pathogen in the blood, whereas sepsis is the condition that is caused by the pathogen. In the context of mortality, if the cause of death is septicemia, sepsis is implied.