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Make STREP B test free on NHS!

This petition had 9,652 supporters

I am a paediatric nurse and only found out about Strep B since working for the NHS. I look after many babies that are admitted to the ward I work on with sepsis. Many of the very young babies under a week old I have found out the mother has had Strep B. These babies have had the correct treatment and have recovered well. My son was born by emergency c section and I paid for the test privately at a clinic in Solihull for £35. The test was quick and painless, swabs were taken and sent off to the labs. It came back negative however, my son had sepsis at birth and had 3 days of antibiotics and has recovered well. I feel very strongly about supporting this petition and want to raise awareness to many expecting mothers that are not aware of this vile infection! This test should be free as many people cannot affford to pay £35. If the NHS can pluck money to pay for people that need surgery to lose weight, antibiotics for everyday illnesses and life saving brain surgery then surely they can find the money for something just as important  to help these newborn babies that deserve to have a happy and healthy life with their families! 

Group B strep (GBS) is a kind of bacteria that many people naturally have in their intestinal tract. The bacteria may also inhabit, or "colonize," your vagina and be passed on to your baby during labor and birth. About 25 percent of pregnant women carry GBS in the vagina, rectum, or surrounding area.

Group B Strep (GBS) Bacteria kills 75 newborn British babies a year. The NHS does not routinely test for it and up to nine out of ten pregnant women have ‘never heard’ about Group B Strep bacteria which infects 700 newborn babies each year in Britain… A further 40 babies are left with serious long-term mental or physical problems, yet Group B Strep is usually preventable with antibiotic treatment for the mother during labour.

Birmingham Women's NHS Foundation Trust provides a range of health care services for women and families across the West Midlands and the UK.
We strive to continuously improve our services and welcome feedback from service users, family members and the public. 
We treat over 50,000 people a year and deliver over 8,000 babies. We are also specialist in genetics, fertility, fetal medicine and have one of leading neonatal intensive care units in the region.

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