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Awareness of Group B Streptococcus

That the Parliament notes with concern what it understands is the lack of public awareness regarding group B streptococcus (GBS) and the effects that it can have on newborn babies; believes that, in the UK, GBS infects over 500 babies every year; understands that, of these babies, 340 will develop early-onset GBS infection and one in 10 of them will die; believes that the incidence of early-onset GBS infection in England, Wales and Northern Ireland has remained unchanged since prevention strategies were first introduced in 2003 and that, in Scotland, it has increased from 0.21 per 1,000 live births in 2000 to 0.47 in 2012; understands that many countries, including the USA, Canada, Germany and Spain, offer routine testing for GBS at 35 to 37 weeks of pregnancy; notes that, although the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists does not recommend routine testing, the Scottish Government is not bound by this approach, and welcomes public petition, PE 01505, Awareness of Strep B in Pregnancy and Infants, which was lodged by Jackie Watt from Kilwinning and asks the Scottish Government to introduce guidelines advising that all expectant mothers should be given information about GBS and be offered either routine testing or given information on where they can be tested privately.

Supported by: Hanzala Malik, Cara Hilton, David Stewart, John Finnie, Jackie Baillie, Neil Findlay, Jean Urquhart, Gil Paterson, Malcolm Chisholm, Anne McTaggart, Siobhan McMahon, Elaine Murray, Hugh Henry

Current Status: Fallen on 09/05/2014