Sepsis continues to have a substantial mortality and morbidity despite advances in the diagnosis and management of this condition. We retrospectively analysed hospital charts of patients diagnosed to have sepsis between January 2002 and June 2003. Demographic characteristics of patients, microbiological findings and predictors of survival were evaluated. Sixty-nine sepsis episodes that occurred in 63 patients were analysed. The most common underlying diseases were hypertension, malignancies and diabetes mellitus. Renal insufficiency, respiratory distress and disseminated intravascular coagulation developed in 52.2, 30.4 and 30.4% of the episodes respectively 47.7% of the blood cultures yielded an organism. Gram-negative bacteria were the predominant microorganisms (65.9%). Fifty-five patients (87.3%) died. Mechanical ventilation and underlying renal disease were significant determinants of mortality. In conclusion, Gram-negative bacteria remain the major pathogens in sepsis. The mortality remains very high, and a change in the clinical approach to the septic patient should be employed to improve the outcome.