Watch a live stream of the National Forum on Sepsis here.

I see Mr. President that you are flying to Atlanta to the CDC this week to discuss Ebola and the recent children's respiratory disease that has worried many parents.

While it is understandable you are worried about an Ebola spread to the US and the international implications of the disease as well as a respiratory virus you are missing an important opportunity.

Sepsis is a far bigger killer than either and is always likely to be until someone like you Mr. President takes it on as a major public health priority.

Did you know Mr. President that sepsis kills more Americans than AIDS, prostate cancer and breast cancer combined and that it contributes to 1 in every 3 deaths in US hospital costing the U.S. economy $20 billion per year?

Mr President you may not already know that Dr.Thomas Frieden, head of the CDC, on September 3rd said "that sepsis affects more a million Americans each year and kills up to half of them" and that a major conference attended by the him and other distinguished experts will be held in Washington on Wednesday.

Did you know that unlike Ebola it is possible to prevent sepsis by the simple act of providing antibiotics and fluids when it is suspected?

No, we didn't know either Mr President which is why I lost my beloved nephew Rory Staunton to the disease at just 12 years of age when emergency room physicians and his pediatrician failed to recognize the symptoms.

If doctors are not trained to see it what chance do the public have? A massive informational campaign would save hundreds of thousands of lives all across America Mr. President if you lead the educational drive. It could be one of the great legacies of your administration,a major public health breakthrough.

Sepsis is a killer hiding in plain sight , yet it can be treated successfully if caught in time.

If parents, doctors and members of the public are educated to look for it it could make a profound difference to public health in America and indeed across the world.

If you lead that effort Mr. President there is a decent chance there will be no more heartbroken parents like my sister Orlaith and her husband Ciaran, The Flatley family who lost their beautiful daughter Erin or the Fitzgerald family in Arizona who lost their beautiful boy Tommy.

It is really rather simple Mr. President, education equals saving lives when it comes to sepsis. As a man who believes passionately in education in every sphere can you lead that effort for us?

A grateful nation will surely thank you.

Niall O'Dowd

Board Member Rory Staunton Foundation.

Watch a live stream of the National Forum on Sepsis here.

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