Treatment that is keeping a brain-dead 12-year-old British boy alive was due to be halted on Saturday morning following a lawsuit between a family opposed to stopping treatment and a hospital.
Archie Battersby has been in a coma in a London hospital since April. He was thought to be brain dead, and in mid-July, British justice allowed the hospital to stop the life-sustaining treatment.
His parents, Holly Dance and Paul Battersby, who are supported by a Christian organization, were forced to let their son die after exhausting all legal remedies in the United Kingdom and before the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR).
The hospital “made it very clear” that “there was no other choice” and that life-sustaining care would end at 10:00 (09:00 GMT) on Saturday, the mother’s mother said. Sky News.
“It was very hard,” she said, “I am broken.” “I did everything I promised my little boy,” she said.
The parents have filed recent legal challenges to have their son discharged from the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel, east London and transferred to a hospice to stop treatment, but to no avail.
“Given the wishes of the family and their motives, the conditions at the nursing home, what Archie would like, the risks of the transfer and his increasingly fragile health, (…) I think it’s in his best interest. remain in the hospital until treatment is stopped,” a London High Court judge said on Friday.
– Hopeless –
The hospital considers his condition too unstable for a transfer, which “is very likely to hasten the deterioration of the condition feared by the parents.”
Archie was found unconscious at his home on April 7 and has not regained consciousness since. According to his mother, he participated in a social media challenge to hold his breath until he passed out.
His parents claimed to have seen signs of life, but for the medical profession, his case is hopeless, which justifies stopping treatment.
In a statement Friday night, the hospital team in charge of caring for Archie Battersby expressed “deep sympathy” for the boy’s family. “By order of the courts, we will work with the family to prepare for discontinuation of treatment, but we will not make any changes to Archie’s care until outstanding legal issues are resolved,” the statement said.
The United Kingdom has already been marked by two other comparable cases in the recent past.
In April 2018, 23-month-old baby Alfie Evans, suffering from a rare neurodegenerative disease, died after a lengthy legal battle by his parents against stopping treatment. In particular, his parents received the support of Pope Francis, who called several times to save the boy’s life.
In 2017, Charlie Gard, who suffered from a rare genetic disease, died shortly before his first birthday after stopping mechanical ventilation, despite numerous appeals from his parents.