Little Archie's parents fight their way through several instances. They want the 12-year-old's life support to continue. In vain. The terminally ill boy could die in the hospital tomorrow.
After multiple court decisions against the family of a terminally ill 12-year-old boy in England, the hospital ends life support for the boy. All infusions and medications would be completed by 2 p.m. (local time, 3 p.m. CEST) this Monday, the PA news agency reported, citing a letter from the Barts Health NHS Trust to the boy's parents.
Archie's mother had previously appealed to Health Secretary Steve Barclay to get the hospital to continue providing care, and to the UN. "We understand that any debate surrounding the end of Archie's treatment is very difficult and painful," the letter continued. "Nevertheless, we want to make sure you and your family are as fully involved as you wish." The aim is to preserve the boy's dignity. "You or a family member may wish to lie on his bed with Archie or hold him in your arms if that is practically possible," the PA quoted as saying.
Archie suffered serious brain injuries in a domestic accident in April - possibly during an internet dare. He has been in a coma ever since. A court of appeals last Monday denied the parents' request to continue life support. It's in Archie's best interest.
The case is reminiscent of similar disputes over terminally ill children in Great Britain. The financially squeezed British health service tends to withdraw life support much sooner than would be the case in Germany. In addition, the wishes of parents and relatives are not taken into account to the same extent. What is in the best interests of the patient is often decided by judges on the recommendation of medical professionals.