Rory Staunton, 12, died from septic shock after having been released from NYU Langone Medical Center with a fever and a fast heart rate. Three hours after the young boy left the hospital’s emergency room, lab tests indicated that Staunton’s blood had an extremely high level of cells that are typically associated with bacterial infections. Rory later went into shock, during which time his organs began to fail, and three days later, he died on April 1. Staunton’s parents said they were never informed about the lab results and had no idea of just how seriously sick their son was after having been told that he was suffering from a normal stomach bug.
A spokeswoman for the hospital has said that changes have been made to hospital procedures so that emergency physicians and nurses would be “immediately notified of certain lab results suggestive of serious infection, such as elevated band counts.” Additionally, the hospital has created a new checklist to make certain that a physician and nurse have performed “a final review of all critical lab results and patient vital signs” before a patient gets released.
The spokeswoman specifically noted that such steps were taken in response to Rory’s death, and added that, “keeping our patients safe is our first priority and we want to prevent this situation from happening again.”
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