British baby Charlie Gard has died, family spokeswoman says – New York News

Charlie Gard, the critically ill British baby at the center of a legal battle that attracted the attention of Pope Francis and U.S. President Donald Trump, has died, according to a family spokeswoman. He would have turned 1 next week.


LONDON — Charlie Gard, the critically ill British baby at the center of a legal battle that attracted the attention of Pope Francis and U.S. President Donald Trump, has died, according to a family spokeswoman. He would have turned 1 next week.

Charlie suffered from a rare genetic disease, mitochondrial depletion syndrome, which caused brain damage and left him unable to breathe unaided.

His parents, Chris Gard and Connie Yates, raised more than 1.3 million pounds ($1.7 million) to take him to the United States for experimental therapy they believed could prolong his life. But Charlie’s doctors at Great Ormond Street Hospital objected, saying the treatment wouldn’t help and might cause him to suffer. The dispute ended up in court.

The case became a flashpoint for debates on health-care funding, medical intervention, the role of the state and the rights of children.

After months of legal battles, High Court Judge Nicholas Francis ruled Thursday that Charlie should be transferred to a hospice and taken off life support after his parents and the hospital that had been treating him failed to agree on an end-of-life care plan for the infant.

Under British law, it is common for courts to intervene when parents and doctors disagree on the treatment of a child. In such cases, the rights of the child take primacy over the parents’ right to decide what’s…

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