Campaigners are calling for all mums to be screened for Group B Strep in a bid to help save lives and prevent babies being left with disabilities.
Early Onset Group B Strep is a bacteria carried by mums which can be passed onto babies. In most cases it is harmless, but it can cause meningitis, sepsis and pneumonia in the first week of a baby’s life.
According to the British Paediatric Surveillance Unit, 518 babies were born with the infection in the year to April 2015, 27 died and dozens were left with disabilities. In the majority of cases babies can be protected if the mother is given antibiotics during labour.
The Group B Strep Support charity wants all mums to be screened but the National Screening Committee has said there is no case for it in the UK as the test is not precise enough which would mean large numbers of women taking antibiotics unnecessarily.
This clip is taken from 5 live Investigates, Sunday 5 March 2017.