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NY Proposes New Hospital Rules For Treating Sepsis

New York is on the way to becoming the first state in the country to mandate specific protocols to reduce deaths from Sepsis, a bacterial infection that produces toxins which disrupt the body's normal reaction to infection.

Tuesday at the State Capitol, NY Health Commissioner Dr. Nirav Shah outlined reforms to fight Sepsis, a disease he says affects 750,000 Americans annually and kills more people annually than Aids, prostate and breast cancer combined.

Shah stresses that early detection is the key to successful treatment.

New York's new Sepsis-fighting protocol and other tweaks in hospital procedure have been dubbed "Rory's Regulations" after 12-year old Rory Staunton from Queens, who died from Sepsis days after he cut his arm playing basketball. Rory's dad Ciaran says the family learned about their son's blood test results when they got a bill in the mail from the laboratory that handled the procedure.

Governor Andrew Cuomo pledged in his State of the State address that New York would set a "gold standard" for patient care.

Dr. Shah promises New York's proposed regulationswill protect pediatric patients by requiring, among other things, that hospitals communicate critical test results in plain language to parents before their child is discharged .

The Stauntons say they will continue to advocate for awareness about Sepsis - they plan to take their crusade National.


Dave Lucas is WAMC’s Capital Region Bureau Chief. Born and raised in Albany, he’s been involved in nearly every aspect of local radio since 1981. Before joining WAMC, Dave was a reporter and anchor at WGY in Schenectady. Prior to that he hosted talk shows on WYJB and WROW, including the 1999 series of overnight radio broadcasts tracking the JonBenet Ramsey murder case with a cast of callers and characters from all over the world via the internet. In 2012, Dave received a Communicator Award of Distinction for his WAMC news story "Fail: The NYS Flood Panel," which explores whether the damage from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee could have been prevented or at least curbed. Dave began his radio career as a “morning personality” at WABY in Albany.
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