Baby Alfie’s parents lose treatment appeal

The parents of a seriously ill baby, who want life-support treatment to continue, have lost the latest round of their fight.

A judge ruled last month that doctors could stop providing life-support to 21-month-old Alfie Evans, who suffers from a degenerative neurological condition.

Mr Justice Hayden made his decision after doctors at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool said that continuing to provide treatment was “unkind, unfair and inhumane“.

Three Court of Appeal judges have now upheld that ruling.

Alfie’s parents, Kate James and Tom Evans, believe their son responds to them.

Tom Evans and Kate James, the parents of 21-month-old Alfie Evans, arrive at the High Court in London to see whether they have won a treatment fight with doctors. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday February 20, 2018. Specialists at Alder Hey Children's Hospital in Liverpool want a judge to give them permission to stop providing life-support treatment to Alfie. See PA story COURTS Alfie. Photo credit should read: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire

Image: Alfie’s parents, Tom Evans and Kate James, believe their son responds to them

But one of the three Appeal Court judges, Mrs Justice King, said they were “unable to accept what movements in Alfie they see are not positive responses”.

Medical evidence showed that Alfie was “deeply comatose” and “to all intents and purposes unaware of his surroundings”, she added.

However the barrister leading Alfie’s parents’ legal team, Stephen Knafler QC, said “the state” had incorrectly interfered with “parental choice”.

Alfie, who was born on 9 May 2016, is in a semi-vegetative state. His neurological condition has not been definitively diagnosed.

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Ms James and Mr Evans, both in their 20s, they were not at the appeal hearing on Tuesday, but listened via a phone link.

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