Judge Orders U.K. Baby to Be Taken Off Life Support

(ConservativeJournal.org) – The high court in the UK gave a verdict on Wednesday, November 8, deciding to stop life support for an 8-month-old baby named Indi Gregory, who is afflicted with mitochondrial disease. Despite the parents and the Italian government’s endeavors to move the child to Italy for additional treatment, the judge concluded that discontinuing invasive life-supporting measures aligns with the child’s best interests.

This legal dispute is part of a series in Britain where doctors and parents engage in conflicts over the treatment of terminally ill children, navigating the rights and responsibilities of both parties. Justice Robert Peel, in a written ruling, endorsed the advice of medical specialists from the Queen’s Medical Center in Nottingham. They advocate for withdrawing treatment in a hospice or hospital.

Indi’s parents aimed to transport her to Italy, with the pediatric hospital in the Vatican offering care, or alternatively, bringing her home for end-of-life care. However, Justice Peel deemed it “too dangerous” to take the baby home due to clinical complexities. He had previously ruled against transferring Indi to Italy, a decision supported by the Court of Appeal judges.

Mitochondrial disease causes inadequate energy production in patients’ cells. There is currently no cure. Indi has suffered progressive brain damage, rendering her entirely dependent on life support. Justice Peel emphasized his decision on Indi’s critical condition, lack of improvement prospects, and “extremely” restricted quality of life, coupled with evidence of frequent pain during treatment. Despite Italy’s government offering to airlift Indi to the Vatican hospital and fund treatment, including granting her citizenship, Justice Peel maintained his decision.

Italian Premier Giorgia Meloni pledged to protect Indi’s life and her parents’ right to care for her. Nonetheless, Peel asserted that the Vatican hospital’s letter lacked treatment details, and there was no proof that experimental treatments would enhance Indi’s quality of life, asserting that sustaining treatment would prolong her pain and suffering. Indi’s father, Dean Gregory, criticized doctors and British courts for disregarding Italy’s government offer as “disgraceful.”

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