Wednesday, 28 June, 2017

Doctors can withdraw child's life-support AGAINST parents' wishes - court rules

Doctors told they can withdraw life support treatment from baby Charlie Gard Charlie Gard’s parents lost their battle at the High Court today
Edmund Wade | 13 April, 2017, 01:01

But Charlie's parents, who are both in their early 30s, disagree.

Charlie's parents, Chris Gard and Connie Yates, are from west London and were hoping to take him to America to try a trial treatment which has helped others with TK2 mitochondrial depletion syndrome, a similar type of the disease.

Justice Francis ruled that life-support treatment should stop after analysing the evidence at a hearing in the Family Division of the High Court in London. The judge said he rendered his verdict "with the heaviest of hearts" but that it was in "Charlie's best interests" to transition him to palliative care and allow him to "die with dignity".

Prior to the ruling, Connie Yates had said if they did not win the court case the couple would use the £1.2m meant to fund the treatment for setting up a charity for mitochondrial depletion syndromes instead.

Charlie, who was born on August 4th, 2016, has a form of mitochondrial disease, a condition which causes progressive muscle weakness and brain damage.

More than £1.2 million (S$2.1 million) had been raised online for the U.S. treatment, through more than 80,000 donations.

They reached their target on a Go Fund Me page more than a week ago after more than 80,000 people donated money.

The judge, who had visited Charlie at Great Ormond Street, said it has been his "sad duty" to apply the law relating to a terminally-ill child's best interests when doctors and parents could not agree.

A British judge decided Tuesday to allow a London hospital to remove a baby boy's life support, despite his parents' objections.

'The Great Ormond Street Hospital has made an application and it is my duty to rule on it, given that the parents and the hospital can not agree on the best way forward'. Charlie was likely to be in pain, they said, and his condition was incurable.

Instead they recommended Charlie be taken off life support and transferred to palliative care.

"Most importantly of all, I want to thank Charlie's parents for their courageous and dignified campaign on his behalf, but more than anything to pay tribute to their absolute dedication to their wonderful boy, from the day that he was born".

A spokesperson for GoFundMe told Sky News they would talk with Charlie's parents over what will happen with the money raised for Charlie's treatment.

Meanwhile, users rushed to add their voice to thousands more, as one Twitter user wrote: "Thoughts with the parents of Charlie Gard".

Charlie Gard, who is eight months old and unable to breathe unaided, will remain on life support at Great Ormond Street Hospital until any appeal against the High Court ruling.

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