A couple have vowed to carry on telling women about a bacteria that took the life of their daughter after a national campaign calling for a routine £10 test failed.
As previously reported in The News, Natalie and Mike Frost were devastated when their baby girl, who they named Ella, was stillborn.
She died in the womb after contracting group B streptococcus (GBS).
The germ is found in about a quarter of women, and often causes no ill effects. It can be treated with antibiotics.
A simple test for the bacteria which costs about £10 is available – but not on the NHS.
Mr and Mrs Frost, of Paddington Road, North End, backed a campaign for all pregnant women to be screened and treated if necessary. The information was collated by charity Group B Strep Support (GBSS) and was handed to the National Screening Committee (NSC).
But after deliberation, the committee decided against bringing in screening.
Mrs Frost, 29, a test analyst, said: ‘Obviously we are heartbroken and very angry about the decision, not only because they are not going to screen for GBS, but that they are not going to inform women about the risks.
‘It makes me very sad to know that this will continue to happen to good people for no reason.
‘We can’t put in a petition until about 2015, but until then I will still carry on talking to women and telling them about GBS.’
The NSC said that it discussed responses from clinicians and members of the public – including the families and friends of those who had been affected.
Based on that it decided that screening women at 35 to 37 weeks would have a limited impact on the worst effects of GBS and members were concerned about the potential to cause harm.
Jane Plumb, chief executive of GBSS, said: ‘The decision not to recommend routine screening is devastating news.’
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