On Tuesday, 8th November 2005, GBSS delivered a petition of 5060 names to Downing Street. That there were as many signatures as this in the 2 month period the petition was running is testament to the strength of feeling in the country about this issue. This petition called on the Government to ensure sensitive testing for GBS carriage is routinely and freely available for all pregnant women in the UK and that relevant health professionals are fully informed about GBS so they can advise expectant parents in their care.
We asked the Prime Minister to let us know:
1. What steps were being take to ensure that all health professionals involved in maternity care – particularly obstetricians, midwives and GPs – are fully educated and informed about the issues around GBS prevention, so that they can confidently and appropriately advise the expectant parents in their care.
2. When sensitive testing for GBS carriage will be routinely available on the NHS for all women late in pregnancy in the UK; and
3. What steps he will be taking to ensure the recently issued Health Protection Agency guidelines for tests for GBS carriage, recognised as optimal by not only the Royal College of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists, but also by leading experts in the issue of GBS prevention, are used within the National Health Service.