UK Court Rules Toddler’s Parents Can’t Take Their Child to Italy for Palliative Care

Melanie Arter
By Melanie Arter | April 20, 2018 | 4:52 PM EDT

Tom Evans, father of Alfie Evans (Screenshot)

The UK Supreme Court ruled that the parents of a terminally ill toddler cannot remove the baby from the hospital to let doctors in Italy treat the baby.

Alfie’s parents, Tom Evans and Kate James, argued that their son, 23-month-old Alfie Evans, was being unlawfully detained at the hospital. They hoped to take him to a hospital in Rome where he can receive palliative care.

The court said doctors at Alder Hey Hospital in Liverpool can take Alfie, who has a degenerative brain disease, off of life support.

“The hospital must be free to do what has been determined to be in Alfie’s best interests,” the court said. “Alfie looks like a normal baby, but the unanimous opinion of the doctors who have examined him and the scans of his brain is that almost all of his brain has been destroyed.

“No one knows why. But that it has happened and is continuing to happen cannot be denied. It means that Alfie cannot breathe, or eat, or drink without sophisticated medical treatment. It also means that there is no hope of his ever getting better,” the justices said.

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