Next time you tell someone, “it’s just a minor cut or scratch,” you may want to think again. If these minor wounds aren’t cleaned up in a timely manner, they can lead to major health issues and sometimes even death.
Twelve-year-old Rory Staunton’s story is one that started out innocent, as he fell and skinned his knee while diving for a basketball during a game at his New York private school.
Following what was thought to be a minor incident, Rory’s teacher covered up the cut with plasters. Little did they know at the time, Rory had suffered from severe septic shock and he died just four days later.
As the leading cause of death in hospitals, Sepsis is a life-threatening condition that is triggered when the body’s immune system goes into overdrive to fight an infection.
Because doctors and those affected fail to recognize the symptoms of Sepsis, the condition is often untreated and undiagnosed, which often results in untimely and unnecessary death. Prior to Rory’s death, there were no protocols put in place to detect sepsis and no awareness for the condition.
Rory’s parents, Orlaith and Ciaran Staunton made it their mission to not only raise awareness but to encourage protocols that would help parents identify and treat Sepsis. They didn’t want any other parent to have to suffer the pain that they have had since Rory passed in 2013, so they founded the Rory Staunton Foundation.
Thanks to the efforts of the Staunton’s, the Sepsis Care Improvement Initiative has been put in place in New York, and earlier detection and treatment have lowered the death rate due to the condition. While the initiative is still new, encouraging improvements have been demonstrated. There have been 4,727 fewer Sepsis deaths in New York since the initiative was launched.
“We have met the people that have been saved by these protocols,” said Ciaran. “We are happy that their parents are not joining us in this miserable life. We want that fighting chance extended to every family in America.
When our son died, there was no awareness, no sepsis protocols, nothing in the A-Z book on sepsis. Now we’ve shown here’s what we can do in New York. We want the US Government to have the same level of anxiety and awareness of Sepsis as they do Ebola.”
According to the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS), every year more than one million Americans are affected by Sepsis and several end up dying from it.
Pictured below on the left: Orlaith, Ciaran, Rory and younger sister Kathleen. Right: Rory Staunton
Commenters shared their thoughts on the tragic incident…
“Went to a fundraiser in NYC for this foundation. Glad to see that the foundation is making a difference. Sorry for your loss.”
One commenter shared just how much Sepsis can affect someone’s body…
“I had Septicemia after surgery here in Ireland. It went undiagnosed for days which deteriorated into Toxic Shock Syndrome ( Septic shock). It was only the microbiologist who saved my life eventually. However, I am left with many lifelong after effects e.g., kidney failure. and frequent infections.”
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