The speakers answered a wide range of questions including the difficulties in informing parents about group B Strep and the choices parents have.
When discussing the information provided to mothers, Mrs Grace Nartley stated that “she’s well-informed in the screening that we offer, she’s also well-informed about the options that she has and where to give birth… as long as we are giving the information and telling what the pros and cons are from all angles, then the woman is fully informed, then she makes that choice.”
In the private sector, offering screening is virtually across the board and it’s another problem that we’ve got of the double standard that has clearly developed, that if you are having private care, I would guess that probably 99 out of 100 women in the UK will be offered screening and will take it up and again, it brings us into conflict with this double standard. If this is something that’s become absolutely normal and standard in private practice, shouldn’t it at least be something we should be mentioning to women in the NHS so that if the worst comes to the worst, they can pay the £35 that it costs them to do the test themselves. It is, I think, a matter of equity and choice.Prof Philip Steer, Emeritus professor of obstetrics at Imperial College, editor emeritus of BJOG
I think what’s important is that women have informed choice so that’s the reason why we give them information really early, so that women can take that away and really digest the information and then they’ve got plenty of time to actually ask questionsMrs Grace Nartey, Matron Midwife, North West London Hospitals NHS Trust
I think that’s one thing we haven’t really addressed today, is just because you screen people doesn’t mean they then need to proceed with the treatment and in a sense that’s one issue I think that we’ve not really pulled out to the panel.”Prof Cathy Warwick, Chief Executive, Royal College of Midwives