Group B Strep Awareness Month 2020

30th June 2020 Clinical Negligence

Tomorrow sees the start of Group B Strep Awareness month. Group B Strep is a type of bacteria that many people can carry, and usually in the vast majority of cases is entirely innocuous.   However, it can cause problems in pregnant women and young babies.  Whilst it is not routinely tested for, it can be found in pregnancy and can be passed onto the infant. In some cases, this can develop in the newborn baby up to three months following the birth.  Whilst in the vast majority of cases, those babies affected will go on to make a good recovery, if not recognised and treated some babies may develop serious conditions such as sepsis or meningitis, with life changing effects. 

As with many bacterial infections, prompt treatment with antibiotics gives the baby the best chance of a recovery, so prompt action is vital.  Common symptoms can include:


●          Fever

●          Poor feeding

●          Vomiting

●          Changes in heart rate and blood pressure

●          Changes to skin tone and colour with a blueish tone

●          Breathing problems

As part of Group B Strep Awareness month, Group B Strep Support is promoting an information leaflet available to download on their website, which sets out key information, risks, treatment and management of this condition.

A link to this information leaflet on their website can be found here.

At JMW, we have sadly seen cases where prompt treatment has not been offered, with devastating consequences for the baby, and indeed their family, at what should be a happy time.  Within our team, we are committed to promoting awareness of this condition, raising standards of medical treatment and promoting patient safety.  We are more than happy to signpost you to support groups, and of course to discuss any concerns you may have in respect of you or your baby’s care.

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Mark Havenhand is a Partner located in Manchesterin our Clinical Negligence department

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