The parents of toddler Alfie Evans have launched a fresh legal appeal to stop their son being taken off life support.
Thomas Evans, 21, and Kate James, 20, will find out on Monday if the Appeals Court will overturn the High Court ruling and allow them to take their ill son to a hospital in Italy for treatment, reports The Mirror.
The 23-month-old has an undiagnosed degenerative brain condition and has been in care and on ventilation at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool since December 2016.
Though doctors at the Vatican-owned Bambino Gesù children’s hospital in Rome said that they are unable to cure Alfie, they can undertake operations to help him breathe and eat which would allow him to live for an “undefined period”.
After the High Court judge upheld his original December 2017 ruling that backed Alder Hey doctors in their decision to switch off the toddler’s life support, on Thursday night, supporters gathered at the hospital to protest.
Claim: Hospital, Police Block Alfie’s Parents ‘Legally’ Removing Him https://t.co/BKg9Vvkkuu
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) April 13, 2018
Mr. Evans told the crowd of hundreds on Thursday night that he had the “legal” right to remove his son from the care of Alder Hey and transport him to Bambino Gesù.
He then alleged the hospital called the police to prevent him removing his son, with officers allegedly telling him he would be “arrested for assault” if he attempted to remove Alfie.
The toddler’s family have said they are accompanied by their own doctors, have removed duty of care from the hospital and placed it with their air ambulance, and have a jet ready to take the child to Italy.
In further accusations, Alfie’s mother was allegedly asked to leave Alfie’s bedside after she questioned hospital visiting rules with supporters, known as Alfie’s Army, tweeting on Friday: “Alfie’s mummy’s been told to leave Alfie’s side and removed from the ward for asking the nurse is it acceptable for family members now being told they cannot see Alfie.”
Doctors Ban Father from Seeing Baby They Want to Take Off Life Support https://t.co/BrsKCwJLDS
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) February 25, 2018
Alder Hey Children’s Hospital said in a statement: “At each stage of the legal process the courts have agreed with expert advisers… that Alfie’s condition is untreatable.”
The legal battle between Alfie Evans’ parents and doctors comes as Alder Hey, one of only four specialist children’s hospitals in England, was found to have failed four in five standard checks during an unannounced inspection, The Guardian reported Saturday.
During the December 2017 inspection, safety watchdog Care Quality Commission found “very worrying problems” in its operating theatres, “near misses” that went unreported, and there were complaints from theatre staff that hospital managers did not listen to their “repeated concerns”.