Objectives:We investigated the effect of a nationwide educational program following surviving sepsis campaign (SSC) guidelines. Physicians' clinical practice in sepsis care and patient mortality rate for severe sepsis were analyzed using a nationally representative cohort.Methods:Hospitalizations for severe sepsis with organ failure from 1997 to 2008 were extracted from Taiwan's National Health Insurance Research Database (NHIRD), and trends in sepsis incidence and mortality rates were analyzed. A before-and-after study design was used to evaluate changes in the utilization rates of SSC items and changes in severe sepsis mortality rates occurred after a national education program conducted by the Joint Taiwan Critical Care Medicine Committee since 2004. A total of 39,706 hospitalizations were analyzed, which consisted of a pre-intervention cohort of 14,848 individuals (2000-2003) and a post-intervention cohort of 24,858 individuals (2005-2008).Results:The incidence rate of severe sepsis increased from 1.88 per 1,000 individuals in 1997 to 5.07 per 1,000 individuals in 2008. The cumulative mortality rate decreased slightly from 48.2% for the pre-intervention cohort to 45.9% for the post-intervention cohort. The utilization rates of almost all SSC items changed significantly between the pre-intervention and post-intervention cohorts. These changes of utilization rates were found to be associated with mild reduction in mortality rate.Conclusion:The nationwide education program through a national professional society has a significant impact on physicians' clinical practice and resulted in a slight but significant reduction of severe sepsis mortality rate.