Court to reconsider ruling allowing doctors to stop treating brain-damaged boy

Court to reconsider ruling allowing doctors to stop treating brain-damaged boy
It comes after judge said Royal London Hospital could legally stop treating 12-year-old

The High Court has been told to reconsider its decision to allow doctors to switch off the life support of a brain-damaged boy.

The Court of Appeal ordered another hearing to decide Archie Battersbee’s care on Wednesday.

It comes after the High Court gave doctors permission to stop treating the 12-year-old boy, who has not regained conciousness since an incident at home nearly three months ago.

His mother, Hollie Dance, said she believes it could have been an accident linked to an online challenge.

The High Courtnhad been ordered to decide what was best for Archie after his family challenged hospital proposals to turn off his life support.

Mrs Justice Arbuthnot previously ruled Archie died at the end of last month and medical professionals at the Royal London Hospital could stop mechanically ventilating the boy and not carry out any resuscitation efforts.

But Ms Dance said she was “sickened” by the ruling and wanted her son to be given more time, saying his heart was still beating.

<p>Archie Battersbee has been on life support since being found unconscious in April (Batterbee family/PA)</p>

Archie Battersbee has been on life support since being found unconscious in April (Batterbee family/PA)

A família launched an appeal over the ruling, which centred over how it had been decided Archie was dead.

The family’s lawyer argued this had been done on the balance of probabilities, rather than using evidence that proved death “beyond reasonable doubt”.

“Medical practitioners, when certifying death, do not do so on the balance of probabilities,” Edward Devereux QC said.

“Given the serious consequences, even of a criminal nature, of making a mistake, it would be unconscionable for any other standard but one conferring certainty to be adopted.

<p>Archie Battersbee was injured in an incident at home in early April </p>

Archie Battersbee was injured in an incident at home in early April

Mr Devereux argued that Mrs Justice Arbuthnot had not carried out a “comprehensive” analysis of evidence relating to whether life-support treatment should continue.

He suggested that the analysis had not been of a “gold standard” and told appeal judges this should be the case in “matters of life and death”.

<p>Archie Battersbee’s mother, Hollie Dance, had appealed the previous High Court ruling </p>

Archie Battersbee’s mother, Hollie Dance, had appealed the previous High Court ruling

Court of Appeal judges ruled a High Court judge should reconsider the case and decide whether it is in the best interests of Archie for his life-support treatment to end.

Three appeal judges said the case would be reconsidered at a hearing in the Family Division of the High Court on 11 julho.

They made no criticism of Mrs Justice Arbuthnot and indicated that they would give reasons for their decision at a later date.

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