A Vatican hospital has stepped up and agreed to provide care for a baby in the UK where a British hospital has removed her life support over her parents’ consent.
In another case about the denial of lifesaving medical treatment in the UK, a British court ruled 8-month-old baby Indi Gregory’s life support could be revoked even though her parents are fighting for her life.
Little Indi suffers from a rare degenerative mitochondrial disease and has been receiving life-sustaining treatment on a ventilator at the Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham, England. But because doctors have given up hope there is now a legal feud between them, their desire to remove her from life support and her parents’ desire to continue medical treatment.
England’s high court ruled that it was in the child’s “best interests” to be taken off life support.
But now a hospital in the Vatican says it will care for little Indi.
The Bambino Gesù hospital has previously offered medical treatment to other critically ill children, including Alfie Evans in 2018 and Charlie Gard in 2017, both of whom were ultimately denied the chance to travel to Italy by U.K. courts and died days after being removed from life support.
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Christian Concern has published a letter from the president of the Bambino Gesù hospital outlining “a detailed treatment plan” for the child, which includes “life-sustaining treatment and palliative care to ensure Indi’s survival and comfort while the treatments take effect.”
Andrea Williams, chief executive of Christian Concern and the Christian Legal Centre supporting the Gregorys’ case, has noted that this is believed to be the first time that a parent’s appeal against an order to withdraw life-sustaining treatment has been rejected by the Court of Appeal without a hearing.
“The law is there to protect life and the most vulnerable in our society. What is happening in this case sets a very worrying precedent with regard to that principle,” Williams said.
“It is very concerning that a child can be held against the parents’ wishes when they have alternative treatment available.”
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