Golf helping fight unassuming bacteria which killed baby Frankie

PUBLISHED: 12:00 17 March 2018

Frankie just after he was born.

Frankie just after he was born.

Archant

A charity golf day is being held to help campaign for nationwide testing of pregnant women for a deadly bacteria.

Lynsey and Craig with newborn Frankie.Lynsey and Craig with newborn Frankie.

The Aldwickbury Golf Club event, on Friday July 13, has been organised by friends of Lynsey White, who lost her newborn son Frankie in 2014 because of Group B Strep (GBS), a bacteria found in one in four women.

She said: “He had a GBS infection which caused him to get meningitis and septicaemia and died days later.

“Afterwards, I started Googling and found it could have been prevented if I had been tested.”

An inquest last year found if doctors had discovered Frankie was ill six hours earlier he would still be alive today.

Lynsey, Craig and Ivy.Lynsey, Craig and Ivy.

Lynsey, who lives in Bricket Wood, said: “There was a lack of information and a lack of clarity during his care about what was wrong with him and I think what we learned with is that even in the medical profession there is a lack of understanding about GBS.”

In January 2017, the charity Group B Strep Support, which Lynsey volunteers for, handed a petition with over 250,000 signatures to the Department for Health, demanding the NHS provide routine tests for pregnant women for GBS, as is done in many European countries and places like the UAE and Oman.

The Department refused to implement testing as they said previous research showed screening would lead to women being given antibiotics they do not need.

Lynsey says she sees their reasoning and thinks this is also due to the cost of supplying tests, however she says there would be a greater cost in putting the infected newborns in a neo-natal unit.

The bridal boutique owner added: “The charity was set up 20 years ago by Jane Plumb, who lost her son, so this is not new. Things have got better but there is far more work to do.”

Lynsey has since given birth to a daughter, Ivy, after receiving antibiotics to prevent another GBS infection, and last November she married Frankie’s father Craig.

The charity golf day will also include a three-course meal and an auction and raffle.

Last year’s event, which is organised by Adam and Daniel Ginder, who own Watford funeral directors MK Ginder and Sons, raised £6,000 for the charity and this year Lynsey is hoping for £8K. For more information email daniel@ginder.co.uk

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