“They weren’t especially remarkable – I saw kids like this every day – but they stick in my mind for some reason,” said Mr Pooley.
In an emotional plea to delegates and the media, he said: “My specific fear is that the horror and the misery of these deaths really fill a well of my despair. And I just don’t know what happens if that’s repeated a million times.
“And so I say, at all costs, we can’t let that happen.”
Mr Pooley recalled how the four-year-old boy had died less than 24 hours after his diagnosis. He had to put him in a body bag as his sister watched.
“The little girl she deteriorated the next day. Overnight, the following night, she had IV fluids and the line came out as she bled. I came in the following morning and she was covered in blood,” he told the conference.
“She still had a very puzzled expression on her face and she wasn’t breathing.
“So I put her in a bag and left her next to her brother. She was a beautiful little girl.”