Raise more awareness on group b strep

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Was asked a while back if I would share our story on what happened to Lewis. I’m not normally one for putting much on here about what actually did happen to Lewis but after watching children in need last night and with a lot of the stories being very tough viewing as in a very similar situation I’ve decided to set up a petition on more awareness about group b strep. January 3rd 1999 my beautiful healthy boy Lewis was born absolutely perfect with no problems whatsoever. 20 days later on 23rd January 1999 Lewis became gravely unwell. lLater that night the doctors told us Lewis had group b strep meningitis... our world was shattered. Nearly 20 years ago group b strep was quite rare and not heard of that much. We were told by the doctors to prepare ourselves for the worst that Lewis most probably wouldn’t survive the next 24 hours, if he was to survive he would be left severely disabled due to extensive brain damage. I prayed he would pull through and he did but due to this infection Lewis has severe quidraplegic cerebral palsy needs 24 hour round the clock care has severe epilepsy and was also left blind. We don’t know what the future holds for Lewis , Lewis has been remarkable and proved ever Doctor wrong as they told us lewis would never see 5 years of age, he has battled on over the years with countless surgeries serious illnesses and keeps on fighting, we know deep down that lewis possibly won’t survive the next pneumonia he gets or the next bad seizure may also take him. Group b strep is so so common with pregnant women now. There is a simple swab every pregnant woman should be offered at 37 weeks to find out if they are a strep b carrier but this simple swab isn’t made available on the nhs which is wrong. There needs to be more awareness on group b strep as there is not enough awareness. one baby a day in the UK develops group B Strep infection. One baby a week dies from group B Strep infection. One baby a fortnight who survives the infection is left with long-term disabilities - physical, mental or both. This can be prevented. Group B Strep is a normal bacterium carried by around 1/4 women, without symptoms and usually unknowingly. It can be passed from mother to baby around birth with potentially devastating consequences for the baby. But these consequences are usually preventable and that’s why I’ve started this petition with the charity Group B Streps to prevent the heartache we have had due to strep b.Unlike many other developed countries including Germany and Spain, the UK does not routinely offer tests to pregnant women specifically to check for Group B Strep carriage during late pregnancy. If doctors know a mum is carrying GBS, they can administer simple antibiotics during labour to prevent the infection - over 80% of these infections could be prevented. However the GBS-specific ECM (enriched . This antibiotic I received when in labour with my girls.Since 2003, the UK has used ‘risk factors’ to guess which pregnant women might be at risk. Risk factors are poor at predicting which babies will develop the infection -- the number of babies infected is growing, we need to stop guessing and start testing. The ECM test costs the NHS £11 each and the antibiotics used in labour (usually penicillin) cost the NHS pennieWe can’t afford to lose any more lives, we can’t afford not to do this
I want to see all pregnant women offered the ECM test within the NHS to detect group B strep

. Can I please ask folks for yous to possibly sign my petition and to possibly share also. Please help me by doing this to prevent other families go through the pain and heartache myself and my family have endured and other families who also have been through the same . Thanks Diane xx

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