For ill U.K. baby, evidence clock ticks
LONDON — A British court on Monday gave the parents of 11-month-old Charlie Gard a chance to present fresh evidence that their terminally ill son should receive experimental treatment.
The decision came after an emotionally charged hearing, during which Gard’s mother wept in frustration and his father yelled at a lawyer.
Judge Nicholas Francis gave the couple until Wednesday afternoon to present the evidence and set a new hearing for Thursday in a case that has drawn international attention.
The judge insisted there had to be “new and powerful” evidence to reverse earlier rulings that barred Charlie from traveling abroad for treatment and authorized London’s Great Ormond Street Hospital to take him off life support.
“There is not a person alive who would not want to save Charlie,” Francis said. “If there is new evidence I will hear it.”
Charlie suffers from mitochondrial depletion syndrome, a rare genetic disease that has left him brain damaged and unable to breathe unaided. His parents want to take him abroad for experimental therapy, which they say offers their son a chance of improvement.
British and European courts have sided with the hospital’s decision that the 11-month-old’s life support should end, saying therapy would not help and would cause more suffering.
The parents of sick child Charlie Gard, Connie Yates and Chris Gard, arrive Monday at the High Court in London for a hearing in their latest bid to see the baby treated with experimental therapy.