Russian children's rights ombudsman calls for ENOC intervention in Charlie Gard's case

Toni Houston
July 6, 2017

Pope Francis and Pope Francis have both called for the parents of terminally-ill Charlie Gard to be allowed to "accompany and treat their child until the end".

Last week, the European Court of Human Rights ruled that a hospital can discontinue life support to the baby, who has a rare genetic disease. On 27 June his parents lost their final legal appeal to take their child to the USA for experimental treatment, for which they raised £1.3 million via crowd funding.

But Bambino Gesu hospital President Mariella Enoc said she was informed that the board of the London hospital said Charlie can not be moved for legal reasons. The Bambino Gesu' offered to help Yates and her husband Chris Gard after Pope Francis said treatment should be provided "until the end".

The family's local MP, Labour's Seema Malhotra, used PMQs to say that while the chances of the United States treatment helping Charlie were low, doctors could say within three months whether he was responding.

Earlier this week they said the hospital had denied their final wish to be able to take their son home to die, and felt "let down".

The comment at prime minister's questions came after the U.S. president, Donald Trump, offered help to the 11-month-old's parents, while Pope Francis expressed his support for the family. Further court actions, including a decision by the European Court of Human Rights June 27, upheld the ruling.

Lord Winston told ITV's Good Morning Britain courts and doctors should not be interfering with the parents' wishes, saying the loss of a child was "about the worst injury that any person can have". "He is praying for them, in the hope that their desire to accompany and care for their own child until the end will be respected", the director of the Holy See Press Office, Greg Burke, said in a statement. After they had spoken, Enoc reached the Great Ormond Street Hospital in London, and she said the London hospital was very kind and thanked her for her interest, but confirmed that for legal causes, it would be impossible to transfer Charlie to their care. "We also encourage the Catholic community to pray for Charlie, his parents and all those that have been caring for him".

At Prime Minister's Questions, the family's MP Seema Malhotra said it was "clear that if Charlie remains in the United Kingdom there is no further treatment available and that life support will be switched off".

Charlie's parents are struggling to save their child's life, and in order to fulfill this endeavor, they have raised almost $2 million through donations.

But the hospital's doctors said that, given Charlie's condition, the therapy was unlikely to have a beneficial outcome.

The Pope spoke out on the issue Sunday after the head of his bioethics panel, Vincenzo Paglia, said that while the Catholic Church was against active euthanasia, it must accept that medicine had its limits and that "disproportionate" medical procedures should be avoided.

Other reports by Ligue1talk

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