The tragic death of a 12-year-old boy has led a grieving family to educate others on the issue of sepsis — one of the leading causes of death in the U.S.
To read the original article on People.com, please click here.
The Rory Staunton Foundation for Sepsis Prevention applauds passage of ‘Rory Staunton’s Law’, which makes New York State the first in the nation to provide comprehensive K-12 sepsis education for every child.
NEW YORK (PRWEB)November 06, 2017
Governor Andrew Cuomo has signed Rory Staunton’s Law (Bill A6053A). The bill directs the commissioner of education to collaborate with the department of health and other health organizations to establish regulations for sepsis awareness and prevention programs for school districts, boards of cooperative educational services and non public schools in New York State. New York is the first state in the nation to provide sepsis modules, free of charge, to every school. Governor Cuomo has a history of supporting policies to combat sepsis: In 2013, he signed Rory’s Regulations into law, requiring all hospitals to adopt evidence-based sepsis protocols. These protocols have saved more than 5,000 New York lives.
The Rory Staunton Foundation for Sepsis Prevention (http://www.rorystauntonfoundationforsepsis.org), in collaboration with the New York Departments of Health and Education and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT), has produced the sepsis curriculum. It promotes a ‘back to basics’ approach to preventing infection, educates students about the risks and signs of sepsis and encourages young people educate others in the community about infection and sepsis by devising public health awareness campaigns. The lessons and associated resources are available through the Rory Staunton Foundation website, the New York State Department of Education site, and on the American Federation of Teachers award-winning Share My Lesson Platform, which is utilized by more than 1.2 million teachers nationwide. In addition to lesson plans, the curriculum includes tools to engage students, parents and teachers, including a read-along picture book for young children (Ouch! I Got a Cut!) and an animated two-minute video about the dangers and signs of sepsis (Sepsis: What You Need to Know to Save a Life, available at https://youtu.be/7f_FxKGEk4E).
This Bill was introduced in the New York Assembly by Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan of Queens. “It has been a great honor to work with the Staunton family on developing this legislation on sepsis awareness and education,” said Assemblywoman Nolan. “Rory Staunton was a wonderful young man who was taken from us by a deadly infection. His parents have bravely dedicated themselves to making changes and educating others to save lives. I want to thank Governor Cuomo for signing Rory Staunton’s law. The work of the Staunton family will save lives and insure that Rory Staunton will always be remembered.”
The Rory Staunton Foundation was established by Ciaran and Orlaith Staunton, whose 12-year-old son, Rory, lost his life to sepsis in 2012. Rory fell and grazed his arm at his school in Queens, New York, and died four days later from undiagnosed, untreated sepsis. “We are immensely proud and grateful that, at last, every child in New York State will have the tools and knowledge they need to protect themselves and their loved ones from sepsis,” said Ciaran and Orlaith Staunton. “Once again, New York State has led the way in providing pragmatic solutions for defeating sepsis, a condition that shatters families like our own on a daily basis.”
Sepsis, a potentially fatal condition stemming from infection, claims more lives in the United States than AIDS, breast and prostate cancers, and stroke combined and costs the U.S. healthcare system $24 billion per year, according the American Medical Association. Yet sepsis is unknown to most Americans. This lack of awareness is partly responsible for the catastrophic death toll as rapid diagnosis followed by antibiotics are essential to survival.
About the Rory Staunton Foundation
The Rory Staunton Foundation was established by Ciaran and Orlaith Staunton following the preventable death of their 12-year-old son, Rory, from sepsis in 2012. The Foundation is dedicated to improving the recognition and treatment of sepsis through public education and improved hospital protocols. Sepsis is the leading cause of death for infants and children worldwide.
Thank you, Governor Cuomo and Assemblywoman Cathy Nolan. A new Bill has passed the legislature in New York State and been signed by the Governor to ensure that all New York State children learn about sepsis in their schools.
BILL NO. A06053A also known as “Rory’s Staunton’s Law,” “Directs the commissioner of education to collaborate with the department of health and other health organizations to establish regulations for a sepsis awareness and prevention program for school districts, boards of cooperative educational services and nonpublic school.”
After a three-year campaign by residents, including sepsis survivor Nicole Taylor and her family, and the Rory Staunton Foundation, New Jersey Mandatory Sepsis Protocols Should Make Their Way to ALL New Jersey hospitals!
But we’re not there yet…
Public comment on the proposed rule change has closed and thank you all for referencing our advice!
“I want mandatory, life-saving sepsis protocols in New Jersey hospitals!” “Proposed New Rule: N.J.A.C. 8:43G-14.9/Hospital Licensing Standards – Infection Control: Sepsis Protocols”
…Yes, there are hospitals in NJ that have sepsis protocols in place, but not every hospital. …what if you or your loved ones go to a hospital that doesn’t follow sepsis protocols?
We can NOT allow “choosing the right hospital” to determine life or death with regards to sepsis!
We appreciate the work of Commissioner Bennett and hope that you encourage her to implement these protocols immediately to start saving lives. ALL New Jersey residents deserve life-saving sepsis protocols in ALL hospitals – NOW!
Join us in making New Jersey SAFE FROM SEPSIS!
Rory is making history again – New York Schools will teach back-to-basics education for treating wounds, will educate regarding infection and teach lifesaving lessons about sepsis.
Read the New York State Education Department press release here.
August 1, 2017, the Rory Staunton Foundation and the Patient Safety Movement Foundation joined forces in Vermont to discuss the implementation of mandatory sepsis protocols.
Rory Staunton Foundation Co-Founder, Ciaran Staunton, and Regional Chairs/Volunteers Mari Miceli and Georgi D’Alessandro of the Patient Safety Movement Foundation met with Vermont Commissioner of Health, Dr. Mark Levine, and the Vermont State Epidemiologist for Infectious Disease, Dr. Patsy Tassler Kelso, to urge the implementation of Rory’s Regulations in all Vermont hospitals.
In May 2017, the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) confirmed that Rory’s Regulations in New York State hospitals are saving lives. We thank the Commissioner and Dr. Patsy Tassler Kelso for their attention to this urgent health issue and look forward to helping Vermont become the next “sepsis safe” state.
By Jayne O’Donnell
Published by USA Today, May 22, 2017
New York regulations named after a 12-year-old victim of sepsis increased the chance of survival from the potentially deadly condition, a study out Sunday shows.
“Rory’s Regulations,” named for the late Rory Staunton of New York City, requires hospitals to quickly perform a checklist of safety measures when people show up at hospitals with sepsis. A report in the New England Journal of Medicine Sunday found the faster hospitals completed the checklist of care and administered antibiotics, the lower the risk of death in hospitals from sepsis. With each additional hour it took, the risk of death increased 4%.
Sepsis, which occurs when the body’s response to an infection injures its own tissues and organs, is the biggest killer of hospital patients. More than 1.5 million cases of sepsis occur in the U.S. annually and more than 20% of people who contract sepsis die from it.
Rory Staunton died five days after falling and getting a cut on his arm in his school gym.
“This is an amazing policy that happened,” says University of Pittsburgh medical school assistant professor and physician Chris Seymour, lead author on the study.
“Minutes matter, and it is critical to perform the correct tests and get the patient antibiotics as fast as possible,” said co-author Mitchell Levy, a physician and professor at Brown University’s medical school.
Ciaran Staunton, Rory’s father, says he seldom uses this word but calls the findings “huge.”
“I have met a lot of the families saved in New York because they had to rule out sepsis,” says Staunton. “I’ve been to the grave sites in other states where there were no protocols.”
Read the original story on USA Today here.
WASHINGTON — Minutes matter when it comes to treating sepsis, the killer condition that most Americans probably have never heard of, and new research shows it’s time they learn.
Sepsis is the body’s out-of-control reaction to an infection. By the time patients realize they’re in trouble, their organs could be shutting down.
New York became the first state to require that hospitals follow aggressive steps when they suspect sepsis is brewing. Researchers examined patients treated there in the past two years and reported Sunday that faster care really is better.
Every additional hour it takes to give antibiotics and perform other key steps increases the odds of death by 4 percent, according to the study reported at an American Thoracic Society meeting and in the New England Journal of Medicine.
That’s not just news for doctors or for other states considering similar rules. Patients also have to reach the hospital in time.
“Know when to ask for help,” said Dr. Christopher Seymour, a critical care specialist at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine who led the study. “If they’re not aware of sepsis or know they need help, we can’t save lives.”
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention last year began a major campaign to teach people that while sepsis starts with vague symptoms, it’s a medical emergency.
To make sure the doctor doesn’t overlook the possibility, “Ask, ‘Could this be sepsis?'” advised the CDC’s Dr. Lauren Epstein.
Once misleadingly called blood poisoning or a bloodstream infection, sepsis occurs when the body goes into overdrive while fighting an infection, injuring its own tissue. The cascade of inflammation and other damage can lead to shock, amputations, organ failure or death.
It strikes more than 1.5 million people in the United States a year and kills more than 250,000.
Even a minor infection can be the trigger. A recent CDC study found nearly 80 percent of sepsis cases began outside of the hospital, not in patients already hospitalized because they were super-sick or recovering from surgery.
In addition to symptoms of infection, worrisome signs can include shivering, a fever or feeling very cold; clammy or sweaty skin; confusion or disorientation; a rapid heartbeat or pulse; confusion or disorientation; shortness of breath; or simply extreme pain or discomfort.
If you think you have an infection that’s getting worse, seek care immediately, Epstein said.
Doctors have long known that rapidly treating sepsis is important. But there’s been debate over how fast. New York mandated in 2013 that hospitals follow “protocols,” or checklists, of certain steps within three hours, including performing a blood test for infection, checking blood levels of a sepsis marker called lactate, and beginning antibiotics.
Do the steps make a difference? Seymour’s team examined records of nearly 50,000 patients treated at New York hospitals over two years. About 8 in 10 hospitals met the three-hour deadline; some got them done in about an hour. Having those three main steps performed faster was better — a finding that families could use in asking what care a loved one is receiving for suspected sepsis.
Sepsis is most common among people 65 and older, babies, and people with chronic health problems.
But even healthy people can get sepsis, even from minor infections. New York’s rules, known as “Rory’s Regulations,” were enacted after the death of a healthy 12-year-old, Rory Staunton, whose sepsis stemmed from an infected scrape and was initially dismissed by one hospital as a virus.
Illinois last year enacted a similar sepsis mandate. Hospitals in other states, including Ohio and Wisconsin, have formed sepsis care collaborations. Nationally, hospitals are supposed to report to Medicare certain sepsis care steps. In New York, Rory’s parents set up a foundation to push for standard sepsis care in all states.
“Every family or loved one who goes into a hospital, no matter what state, needs to know it’s not the luck of the draw” whether they’ll receive evidence-based care, said Rory’s father, Ciaran Staunton.
Published by Times Telegram, April 10, 2017.
New York has reduced the number of residents dying of sepsis since new regulations kicked in in 2014, state data shows.
Rory’s Regulations, named after Rory Staunton, 12, of Queens, who died of sepsis after a 2012 fall in the school gym, require hospitals to develop and implement protocols to diagnose and treat sepsis early, the first such requirement in the nation.
The protocols are needed, said Dr. Maria Gesualdo, president of Slocum-Dickson Medical Group and a pulmonary critical care specialist who’s heading up the sepsis initiative at the Mohawk Valley Health System.
“When somebody comes through the (emergency department), there’s a stroke alert,” she said. “We have protocols for myocardial infarction (heart attacks) … but we never had anything for sepsis.”
Sepsis, a dangerous reaction to infection, can progress rapidly, leading to the shutdown of the body’s organs and systems, making early intervention critical. It strikes 750,000 Americans each year, killing 200,000. It is the No. 1 cause of death in the hospital and the 11th leading cause of death overall.
In New York, mortality rates for sepsis among adults fell from 30.2 percent to 25.4 percent from mid-2014 through the end of September in 2016, according to the New York State Department of Health study. And the number of patients diagnosed with sepsis rose 20 percent, meaning hospitals got better at identifying patients, according to the study.
Much of the effort centers around screening all patients with infections to see if they may have or be at risk for sepsis, and the use of two protocol “bundles” for patients with sepsis. A bundle is a group of tests and treatments that all patients matching certain criteria should receive.
The three-hour bundle — care to be delivered within three hours — is to resuscitate patients who are severely septic or in septic shock, Gesualdo said. A six-hour bundle is for patients admitted with sepsis.
It’s not that doctors didn’t already know what to do, but they tended to “piecemeal” their treatments.
“Having it all in one order set, we capture everything,” she said. “We don’t miss any of the important elements.”
At Bassett Medical Center, Rory’s Regulations spurred specific initiatives such as a sepsis work group, an alert system for possible symptoms built into the electronic medical record, a rapid response team for a “coordinated and choreographed response,” and provider and nurse education, including the production of a new training video, said Chief of Medicine Dr. Charles Hyman.
“As a result of the above initiatives, Bassett Medical Center has made considerable progress over the past couple years,” he said. “Our 2016 compliance rate is above that of the (New York state) mean for sepsis protocol.”
That means more patients are receiving the prescribed care — such as a systemic antibiotic within one hour of diagnosis — quickly and fully. And the hospital’s sepsis mortality rate is falling below the state average, Hyman said.
The sepsis initiative has been important to spread awareness of a deadly issue and things are definitely improving, Gesualdo said. But perfect compliance doesn’t happen overnight. “It’s really a big initiative. We still have to iron out some wrinkles,” she said.
“It’s everybody’s responsibility,” she added. “We all have to work as a team. We need that nudging till it becomes knee-jerk response.”
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Read original article here.
“New York has been leading the fight against sepsis and, as these new figures show, our efforts are working to save lives and increase early detection and treatment of this deadly condition. I commend Ciaran and Orlaith Staunton for their advocacy and fighting in Rory’s memory to prevent further tragedies. It is our hope the rest of the nation recognizes the success that can be achieved by using Rory’s Regulations as a model for combating and ultimately ending sepsis infections once and for all.”
– Governor Andrew Cuomo, New York
Read the Governor’s full press release here
Read the full text of New York State’s Rory’s Regulations here