Thursday, 21 September, 2017

US VP prays for Charlie Gard amid deadline

Case of critically-ill baby back in court UK court rehears Charlie Gard case in light of new evidence
Connie Andrews | 13 July, 2017, 01:04

Baby Charlie Gard's parents have collected a total of 350,000 signatures in support for new treatment to help save their baby's life. "He could be my child, or your child, or any one of us", said Foster.

They nevertheless called for a new hearing before the British High Court of Justice, deeming it necessary to take into account the "new elements for experimental treatment" proposed by "two worldwide hospitals". The crowdfunding campaign raising money for treatment in the USA for eight month old Charlie Gard reached its target of £1.2million this weekend.

But the hospital and other experts say the treatment will not work on Charlie, who they say is suffering irreversible brain damage.

Charlie suffers from mitochondrial depletion syndrome, which saps the energy from his organs and muscles.

The British courts allowed the Great Ormond Street Hospital to turn off the baby's life support machine after it cited that Charlie's health was terminal and deteriorating.

A protest was staged outside Colchester Town Hall to raise awareness of Charlie's struggle and the legal battle his parents are facing.

But the judge insists there has to be "new and powerful" evidence to reverse earlier rulings that barred Charlie from travelling overseas for treatment and authorised London's Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) to take him off life support. Arturo Estopiñan, who lives with his parents in Baltimore, Md., was diagnosed at just over a year old and has lived to the age of six, also thanks to the treatment now denied to Gard.

The hospital said he shouldn't be moved, suing the parents in court to keep him there and "die with dignity". Surely, they love their child no less than I love mine; maybe they are just fiercer fighters. "I will be the first to welcome that outcome", Francis told Gard's lawyers.

Francis who ruled on the original case in April said he would be delighted to change his mind but added "I want evidence of something that's different".

But doctors familiar with his case haven't been so optimistic. The Court had held that keeping her alive would only prolong her suffering, with no hope of recovery.

Likewise, Charlie is not a cautionary tale about a single-payer system being unwilling to foot the bill for pricey care - if money were the issue, the hospital would be shooing him out the door - or about death panels deciding who deserves care.

Newly proposed legislation from two Republican members of Congress would grant lawful permanent status in the United States to Charlie Gard and his family, Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) wrote in an op-ed published by Fox News on Tuesday.

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