Fletchers solicitor’s Senior Medical Negligence Solicitor, Christian Beadell believes a new Strep B prevention trial offers new hope for newborn babies.
£2.8 million will go towards the Group B Strep prevention pilot which is backed by the Health Research Authority in England and Care Research in Wales.
After an announcement in May this trial has taken some time to receive ethical approval.
However, there is now light at the end of the tunnel for those who have advocated tirelessly for better specific GBS testing for all mothers, over the current risk factoring approach
Strep B in numbers
Group B Strep is the single most source of life-threatening infection for newborn babies.
Moreover, the disease is prone to cause many serious infections including pneumonia, meningitis and sepsis.
According to research, one in 1,750 babies will develop a Group B Strep infection. Consequently, one in 19 likely will die and one in 14 will be left with a long-term disability.
To sum up, I hope that the study will lead to a change of policy in the UK.
We must see an eradication of the number of cases we are seeing because babies suffer severe consequences of missed or late diagnosis of infection.
Who else is backing the Strep B trial?
80 hospitals across the UK will participate in the trial with at least 320,000 women involved.
In addition to Christian’s thoughts, Health Minister Nadine Dorries believes the initiative can provide ‘every baby’ with a better start to life.
This is an issue I’ve been closely involved with for some time and I’m determined to do everything I can to raise awareness and help protect mothers and their newborn from the devastating impact this infection can have.
We want the NHS to be the safest place in the world to give birth and this trial will be an important step in understanding if universal screening of Group B Strep can save the lives of more babies.