UK Court Rules It is in the 'Best Interest' to Deny Life-Saving Treatment to 7-Month-Old
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A U.K. judge has ruled that "it is in the best interest" of a 7-month-old child to be denied life-saving treatment and removed from life support.
Indi Gregory is battling a rare mitochondrial disease, but her parents, Claire Staniforth, and Dean Gregory, say the baby is happy and responds to their touch.
However, earlier this month, her parents were devastated when they were informed with only 48 hours' notice that there would be a legal hearing to determine their baby daughter's fate.
Last week, the U.K.'s socialized healthcare system – the National Health Service – told a judge at the High Court in London that it is in Indi's "best interests" not to be given treatment to 'sustain her life' if her condition deteriorates, according to Christian Concern.
Stainforth and Gregory are fighting for their baby's life by appealing a court's decision to remove their daughter off of life support. They want their daughter to continue receiving treatment in pediatric intensive care at the Queen's Medical Centre in Nottingham.
"We are devastated by the judge's ruling and will be appealing," Gregory, Indi's father, said. "The doctors painted a terribly bleak and negative picture of Indi's condition during court proceedings."
He continued, "It feels like the Trust has been given the permission they were after to legally proceed with a death sentence for Indi. Is this in the best interests of Indi or the Trust?"
Gregory said that although Indi has been hospitalized her entire life she is a "happy" baby.
"Our daughter responds to us, and on her good days she is babbling, making noises, moving all her limbs," he said. "She can definitely experience happiness. She cries like a normal baby. We know she is disabled, but you don't just let disabled people die. We just want to give her a chance."
The parents also had Indi baptized.
"For seven months, we have had the prospect of Indi's death staring us in the face and we also have experienced a well-organized system pressurizing us to yield and give up on Indi so that she dies. This has been the most acute experience of evil we had in our lives. It has been like experiencing hell," Gregory described.
"It is because of this that we decided to baptize Indi and we are praying for God to protect her," he added.
The Christian Legal Centre is helping the family during their legal battle and will assist them in their appeal.
"Life is precious and to be protected in law. We must give people every chance to live rather than end their lives prematurely by saying it's in their best interests to die," said Andrea Williams, chief executive of the Christian Legal Centre.
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