Senate Hearing

Rory Staunton Foundation, Sepsis Education, Awareness and Prevention

Senate Committee Hearing

In September 2013, Foundation Founders, Orlaith and Ciaran Staunton, succeeded in having the first ever U.S. Senate Hearings on Sepsis where Senator Tom Harkin highlighted the criticality of the issue, stating:  “…we need Rory’s Regulations in every state so that they can recognize sepsis.” (Read more about the Regulations)

Official transcript: Our testimony at the U.S. Senate

Senator Tom Harkin, Chairman of the U.S. Senate Health Committee called for sepsis awareness and regulations in every state.

Senator Harkin, speaking at the conclusion of the first ever hearings in the United States Senate  to address Sepsis (U.S. Efforts to Reduce Healthcare-Associate Infections, September 24th, 2013) said that “we can win this-we can talk to one another, we need the kind of regulations in every state so that we can recognize sepsis.”
Senator Tom Harkin, Senate Hearing, Rory Staunton Foundation
Senator Harkin’s remarks came in direct response to the testimony of Ciaran Staunton who spoke about his son Rory’s tragic death to sepsis. The Staunton family through the Rory Staunton Foundation had successfully campaigned for these hearings.
Ciaran included in his testimony details of the New York State Sepsis Regulations, named for Rory, which became New York State Law this year.  These regulations which mandate sepsis protocols are expected to save between six thousand and eight thousand lives this year. In his testimony Mr Staunton included evidence based findings of improved mortality rates and savings to the economy through adoption of these measures. (A copy of his testimony appears below).
Speaking on behalf of the Rory Staunton Foundation, Mr Staunton said “We are calling on Congress to institute a federal nationwide program of education on early detection of sepsis with similar standards in all fifty states. We are also calling on Congress to create a comprehensive educational resource so that doctors, nurses and, yes, parents and patients can include sepsis as a possible diagnosis when a patient shows up in an emergency room with similar symptoms to Rory. Sepsis is not a deadly disease when caught in time. Antibiotics are remarkably effective and many die from ignorance of how to recognize the condition as Rory did.”
Transcript of Staunton Testimony

http://www.help.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/Staunton.pdf

Video Clip of Hearing http://www.help.senate.gov/hearings/hearing/?id=f456e2d1-5056-a032-5205-16c713b1418e

New York 1: Time Warner Cable http://www.ny1.com/content/lifestyles/health/189366/family-of-queens-boy-spreads-message-about-sepsis-to-washington

New York Daily News http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/parents-boy-died-undiagnosed-infection-testify-capitol-hill-article-1.1466670

Irish Central http://www.irishcentral.com/news/Irish-family-testify-before-US-Senate-over-death-of-son-from-sepsis-225168042.html

The Irish Times http://www.irishtimes.com/news/health/us-senate-urged-to-alter-sepsis-care-after-death-of-irish-emigrant-s-son-1.1538432

Time http://swampland.time.com/2013/09/25/how-hospitals-make-you-sick-and-what-you-can-do-about-it/

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U.S. Senate Health Committee Vows Action on Sepsis

Senate Hearing, Ciaran Staunton, Rory Staunton Foundation, Sepsis

Ciaran Staunton addresses the hearing flanked by his daughter Kathleen and Rory’s uncle Fergus

Senator Tom Harkin, the chairman of the influential Senate Health committee, has promised action on sepsis after hearing testimony from Rory Staunton’s father, Ciaran, at a Senate Committee Hearing, Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2013.

The hearing, which was held by the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee, was the first time that the issue has ever been raised at federal level.

Ciaran, whose 12-year-old son Rory died of sepsis on April 1, 2012, gave powerful testimony on the crisis of sepsis in America. Rory’s mother Orlaith and sister Kathleen sat behind Ciaran as the hushed chamber heard how Rory died from what Sen. Harkin described as a detectable and survivable infection.

Harkin (D-Iowa), who chairs the HELP committee said, “This is one of the most important hearings this committee has had or will have this entire year. This is something we can do, and we need to get to the bottom of this.”

Speaking in response to Ciaran’s testimony, he said that “his son (Rory) died of an infection that was detectable and survivable.”

Ciaran said hundreds of thousands of lives could be saved each year if the federal government introduced regulations similar to New York’s newly mandated  regulations governing sepsis detection and treatment, which are commonly referred to as “Rory’s Regulations”.

Ciaran was joined on his panel by Jonathan Perlin, MD from Healthcare Corporation of America (HCA) and Joe Kiani, Founder of the Patient Safety Movement. Kiani told the committee that, “every week we are losing 4,000 people to preventable Hospital-Acquired Infections.”

Rory’s parents, Ciaran and Orlaith, founded the Rory Staunton Foundation to work towards reducing the number of sepsis-caused deaths by raising awareness through education and outreach.  They thanked Chairman Harkin and ranking member Lamar Alexander.

“By having this hearing today we are encouraged that our voice has been heard once again, this time on a federal level. Our son Rory should not have died and through these hearings we will continue to advocate for changes that will save hundreds of thousands of American lives.”

Concluding the hearings, Senator Harkin said, “We can win this-we can talk to one another, we need the kind of regulations in every state so that we can recognize sepsis.”

Read more 

Transcript of Staunton Testimony http://www.help.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/Staunton.pdf

Video Clip of Hearing http://www.help.senate.gov/hearings/hearing/?id=f456e2d1-5056-a032-5205-16c713b1418e

New York 1: Time Warner Cable http://www.ny1.com/content/lifestyles/health/189366/family-of-queens-boy-spreads-message-about-sepsis-to-washington

New York Daily News http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/parents-boy-died-undiagnosed-infection-testify-capitol-hill-article-1.1466670

Irish Central http://www.irishcentral.com/news/Irish-family-testify-before-US-Senate-over-death-of-son-from-sepsis-225168042.html

The Irish Times http://www.irishtimes.com/news/health/us-senate-urged-to-alter-sepsis-care-after-death-of-irish-emigrant-s-son-1.1538432

Time http://swampland.time.com/2013/09/25/how-hospitals-make-you-sick-and-what-you-can-do-about-it/

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Rory Staunton Foundation gains momentum with support of Senator Tom Harkin

Senate Hearings, Rory Staunton Foundation, Sepsis,

New York, N.Y. – September 16, 2013 –  The Rory Staunton Foundation (www.rorystaunton.com), today announced that  Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, is providing his full support to the Foundation’s mission to stop sepsis through education and awareness by holding Senate hearings on September 24th, 2013 at 10am.

“Sepsis kills more Americans than AIDS,” stated Ciaran Staunton, Rory’s father.  “We gained a stronghold in the State of New York with Governor Cuomo mandating the Rory Regulations providing medical institutions with mandated criteria regarding early sepsis diagnosis, treatment and communication.   The systemic failure that caused the totally preventable death of my twelve year old son must be immediately corrected across the country.   I will speak for Rory and every child on September 24th at the U.S. Senate Hearings.  This is my life’s mission.”

Senator Harkin, on World Sepsis Day, said, “No one should leave a hospital sicker than when they came in. We know that many healthcare-associated infections are preventable and easily treatable, given that our medical professionals have the right education and training about symptoms and warning signs. Hundreds of thousands of Americans contract sepsis infections each year—so we must take bold steps to prevent these needless illnesses and death.”

The Rory Staunton Foundation seeks to reduce the number of deaths from sepsis through education and outreach aimed at faster diagnosis and effective treatment of sepsis, particularly in children.

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Staunton Family to Testify on Sepsis at U.S. Senate Hearings

Rory Staunton, Rory Staunton Foundation, Senate Hearing, Sepsis

An urgent call for sepsis awareness and action will be the message from the Staunton family, parents of Rory Staunton the 12 year old New York boy who died from Sepsis on April 01, 2012.

The family have been invited to testify about Sepsis before a full Health Committee Hearing in the United States Senate on September 24th, 2013. This is the first time that the issue of sepsis in the United States has been raised at such a high level.

Orlaith and Ciaran Staunton said in a statement today that they welcomed the invitation to testify and thanked both the Senate Health Committee Chairperson Senator Harkin and the ranking member Senator Alexander for the invitation.

“This is an historic opportunity to speak to the full Senate House Committee about our son Rory’s death and how it has impacted our family.Sepsis kills more Americans than Aids, and is costing the US economy over $16 billion dollars a year. Moreover, there is a real opportunity to save lives through awareness and education throughout our community of parents and health care professionals as sepsis is treatable once it is detected.”

“Our son Rory should not have died and we want to ensure that no other child dies unnecessarily because of this silent killer. As part of this effort we have worked with New York Governor Andrew Cuomo  who has enacted  ’Rory’s Regulations’ and we have set up the Rory Staunton Foundation to increase awareness of Sepsis.”

The Senate Hearing will take place on Tuesday, September 24th at 10:00am at 430 Dirksen Senate Office Building.