Since his 12-year-old son's preventable death from sepsis in 2012, Ciaran Staunton, together with his wife, Orlaith, has dedicated his life to improving sepsis outcomes and reducing sepsis mortality rates in the United States and beyond. The Stauntons established the Rory Staunton Foundation for Sepsis Prevention in 2012, in honor of their son, and focus their efforts on sepsis education and awareness programming and the development and implementation of sepsis protocols in hospitals. New York State became the first in the nation to adopt the Stauntons' mandatory sepsis protocols, called Rory's Regulations, in 2013. The protocols have saved thousands of lives, both adult and children since their implementation. At the urging of the Staunton's and working with them New York State Department of Health also introduced the Parents Bill of Rights which is a list of rights outlining the care any parent or caregiver entering an Emergency Room in New York State must receive.
On September 24, 2013, Ciaran testified at the fist Senate Hearing on Sepsis. The Foundation is also responsible for the development of sepsis education programs for schools and the Annual National Forum on Sepsis, which brings together policymakers, healthcare experts, educators and patient advocates to address challenges, recognize best practices and chart new pathways in the fight against sepsis. In 2015, the Foundation established the National Family Council on Sepsis, a network of families impacted by sepsis, that provides a platform for members to advocate for improved sepsis care in their states and nationally and acts as support group for victims and their loved ones. In 2016 following protracted efforts by the Rory Staunton Foundation, the federal government for the first time allocated major funding towards sepsis. In August, 2016 the CDC declared sepsis a ""medical emergency."" Members of the National Family Council participated in four PSA announcements produced by the Rory Staunton Foundation that went viral with over half a million views in the first few days. In September, 2016 the Rory Staunton Foundation was honored with a Global Sepsis Award because of its' ""unique success to increase awareness for sepsis on all levels of society.""
The work of the Rory Staunton Foundation has been featured in various media outlets including People, The New York Times, Today Show, NPR and the Washington Post. Their work has also been peer-reviewed by the Journal of the American Medical Association, Critical Care Medicine and the New England Journal of Medicine.
In July 2019 Ciaran and the Rory Staunton Foundation were awarded the prestigious Friends of Pathology Award by the Leadership Council of the Association of Pathology Chairs.
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