Sepsis kills more Americans than opioid overdoses, breast cancer, and AIDS combined. Up to 80 percent of sepsis deaths are preventable. On World Sepsis Day, a new campaign seeks to drive sepsis awareness and save lives.

- Rory Staunton Foundation and Roche #Fly2FightSepsis, an initiative aimed at sepsis education and prevention
- Mark September 13, World Sepsis Day, by knowing when to ask, "Could this be sepsis?"
- Campaign inspired by young sepsis victim's love of flight

INDIANAPOLIS, Sept. 13, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- The Rory Staunton Foundation for Sepsis Prevention and Roche Diagnostics today announced the launch of a social media initiative aimed at driving education and prevention of sepsis - a condition stemming from infection that in the U.S. affects more than 1.6 million people and claims more than 250,000 lives each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention. "With the launch of, we hope to empower others with the information we never had," said Rory Staunton Foundation's co-founder, Ciaran Staunton, whose 12-year-old son died of sepsis. "Knowing the signs of sepsis has the power to save so many lives. It could have saved our son Rory's life."

Sepsis, commonly called "blood poisoning," is an illness caused by the body's extreme response to any kind of infection. It can result in organ failure and death if not quickly diagnosed and treated with antibiotics. For 12-year-old Rory Staunton, a simple scrape on the elbow during gym class progressed rapidly to the severe sepsis that took his life four days later. "Sepsis is a leading cause of death for children worldwide," says Orlaith Staunton, co-founder of the Rory Staunton Foundation. "I'm enormously hopeful that this campaign will help to spread the signs of sepsis and inspire people to take action against this indiscriminate killer."

The Fly to Fight Sepsis campaign encourages individuals to share the signs of sepsis through social media and email and pledge action to support sepsis policy improvements. The campaign uses a the paper airplane in honor of young Rory Staunton's passion for flying and as a symbol of remembrance and hope for families and survivors.

"We all share the vision of keeping people safe from sepsis by learning to recognize the signs," said Roche Diagnostics Senior Vice President of Marketing Randy Pritchard. "This social media campaign, inspired by Rory's dream of becoming a pilot, makes it easy for people to share the signs of sepsis with their friends and family."

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About the Rory Staunton Foundation
The Rory Staunton Foundation for Sepsis Prevention was established following the preventable death of 12-year-old Rory Staunton from sepsis. It is the leading sepsis advocacy organization in the country. Through public education programs and the implementation of sepsis protocols in hospitals, the Foundation works to improve the rapid recognition and treatment of sepsis and end the hundreds of thousands of preventable deaths and lifechanging disabilities that occur each year from this devastating condition.

About Roche
Roche is a global pioneer in pharmaceuticals and diagnostics focused on advancing science to improve people's lives. The combined strengths of pharmaceuticals and diagnostics under one roof have made Roche the leader in personalised healthcare - a strategy that aims to fit the right treatment to each patient in the best way possible.

Roche is the world's largest biotech company, with truly differentiated medicines in oncology, immunology, infectious diseases, ophthalmology and diseases of the central nervous system. Roche is also the world leader in in vitro diagnostics and tissue-based cancer diagnostics, and a frontrunner in diabetes management.

Founded in 1896, Roche continues to search for better ways to prevent, diagnose and treat diseases and make a sustainable contribution to society. The company also aims to improve patient access to medical innovations by working with all relevant stakeholders. Thirty medicines developed by Roche are included in the World Health Organization Model Lists of Essential Medicines, among them life-saving antibiotics, antimalarials and cancer medicines. Roche has been recognised as the Group Leader in sustainability within the Pharmaceuticals, Biotechnology & Life Sciences Industry nine years in a row by the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices (DJSI).

The Roche Group, headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, is active in over 100 countries and in 2017 employed about 94,000 people worldwide. In 2017, Roche invested CHF 10.4 billion in R&D and posted sales of CHF 53.3 billion. Genentech, in the United States, is a wholly owned member of the Roche Group. Roche is the majority shareholder in Chugai Pharmaceutical, Japan. For more information, please visit

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For more information:
- Christina Vysma 317.292.2920

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