Jill Gress, Vice President of Harris Interactive, Joins Board of Directors of Sepsis Alliance

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Jill Gress has joined the Board of Directors of Sepsis Alliance, the nation's leading patient advocacy organization promoting sepsis awareness. Gress is a Vice President of Harris Poll Insights, and her understanding of emerging industry trends and challenges makes her a vital addition to the Sepsis Alliance team.

Sepsis is… a largely preventable condition, and through raising awareness we have a tremendous opportunity to save lives.

Sepsis Alliance, the nation's leading patient advocacy organization promoting sepsis awareness, today announced that Jill Gress has joined its Board of Directors.

Gress is a Vice President of Harris Poll Insights, a division of Harris Interactive, one of the leading market research firm and known widely for the Harris Poll® and for pioneering innovative research methodologies. Gress also has a clinical healthcare background, having worked clinically as a registered respiratory therapist prior to joining Harris.

“Throughout my career in hospital care and research, I’ve seen the how devastating sepsis can be for both patients and their families,” said Gress. “Sepsis is however, a largely preventable condition, and through raising awareness we have a tremendous opportunity to save lives.”

Sepsis, sometimes called blood poisoning by the general public, is a medical emergency that occurs when the body's response to injection begins to injure its own tissues and organs. It is estimated that 258,000 people in the U.S. die every year from sepsis, a preventable condition requiring early diagnosis and rapid treatment.

Ms. Gress' addition to the Board of Directors comes on the heels of a recent study in the U.S., singling out sepsis as the biggest drain on the national healthcare system. Sepsis ranked as the most expensive of all in-hospital costs at $20.3 billion dollars in 2011, or 5.2% of the national costs for all hospitalizations that year. The study, published in August of 2013 by Celeste M. Torio, Ph.D., M.P.H. and Roxanne M. Andrews, Ph.D., also identified sepsis as the most expensive condition billed to Medicare, accounting for 6.9% of all 2011 Medicare costs. Despite these numbers, fewer than half of American adults know what sepsis is.

“We are delighted to welcome Jill Gress to the Board of Directors," said Dr. Jim O’Brien, Sepsis Alliance Medical Director and Board Chair. “Jill's experience, expertise and dedication will be an asset to the organization and help us to fulfill our mission for the years ahead.”

About Sepsis Alliance

Sepsis Alliance is a nonprofit patient advocacy organization in the U.S. promoting awareness of sepsis. Sepsis Alliance operates by providing information and education to raise awareness of sepsis and its devastating effects, So More Survive. Sepsis Alliance also provides support by giving people affected by sepsis a forum to share information. Sepsis Alliance was founded by Dr. Carl Flatley after the loss of his 23-year-old daughter, Erin, to sepsis. Her death in 2002 spurred Dr. Flatley to start an organization that would promote awareness of sepsis to both medical professionals and patients. Sepsis Alliance is registered as a 501(c)(3) charitable organization, and is a founding member of the Global Sepsis Alliance. For more information on Sepsis Alliance, please visit http://www.sepsisalliance.org.

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Scott Carr
Sepsis Alliance
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