Alfie Evans is not the first little boy to be held hostage by the court system and the healthcare system. There have been many other cases where courts and doctors have made the life or death decisions for a patient over the objections of their family.
One of those cases involved a little boy named Charlie Gard. In essentially the exact same circumstance, the British courts decided that his parents did not have the right to make the decision whether his life support was disconnected and a hospital yanked his life support without their consent. Charlie ultimately died not long after that happened. Chris Gard and Connie Yates’ little boy passed away just before 1st birthday in July 2017.
Today, Charlie’s parents are providing their support for the family of Alfie Evans. They say that it is impossible for other people to really understand the pain that these parents are going through knowing that the future of their son is mostly out of their hands.
Ms Yates said today: ‘With heavy hearts we have watched as Alfie’s case has unfolded. For those who have not been in a situation like this, it is impossible to understand the pain Tom and Kate are going through’.
Yates again called for the law to be changed to make the so-called ‘best interests’ test for poorly children fairer and more transparent for parents.
She said: ‘When we were fighting for our son, Charlie Gard to be given a chance to try a treatment that could have improved his quality of life, we realised that cases like these would keep happening until the law was changed. Tragically, this has proven to be true’.
Connie said: ‘Since Charlie’s passing in July last year, we have been working with paediatric consultants, medical ethicists, senior lawyers, U.K. politicians and other parents who have suffered through similar situations as us, to try and propose a law that will prevent parents experiencing painful and prolonged conflicts with medical professionals.
‘This involves addressing problems around the ‘best interests’ test as well as creating a platform for transparency and openness so that cases like these can be dealt with before they ever reach the courts. We were calling this ‘Charlie’s Law’ whilst also working on the foundation set up in his memory.
‘Once cases are public it is difficult for people to be fully aware of the complexities and this often leads to illinformed judgements on both sides and creates unnecessary conflicts.
‘We have something that is better for everybody – hospitals, healthcare professionals, families with sick children, the NHS, and the reputation of our own government. We would ask those pushing for law change to take account of the careful work already done, and join us as we continue to push for a solution that is best for all involved’.
Little Alfie Evans has survived for almost 4 days after a children’s hospital yanked his life support without his parents’ consent. That’s despite the prediction doctors made that Alfie wouldn’t live very long after his life support was removed.
Although Alfie’s parents have stopped releasing media statements about his condition or their legal battle to save him, Alfie’s uncle posted on Facebook that he believes Alfie could come home soon after his parents had a positive meeting yesterday with officials at Alder hey Children’s Hospital.
As LifeNews reported, Alfie Evans’ father Tom Evans called for supporters of Alfie and his family to “stand down” so they can begin “building a bridge” with Alder Hey Children’s Hospital and its staff. The statement from Alfie’s father was surprising given the animosity that had developed between the Evans family and the hospital. Hospital officials have spent months in court preventing Alfie’s family from taking him to a hospital in Italy or even taking him home. Hospital officials even went as far as misleading courts by saying that they never said Alfie would die quickly after his life support was removed — even though they initially said Alfie would die within minutes after yanking his life support over his parents’ objections.
But perhaps seeing that there is little opportunity left to fight for Alfie’s rights and their right to take him abroad or take him home or sensing a need to appease the hospital to bring him home, Tom Evans is now striking a conciliatory tone.
Now, Alfie’s uncle Daniel Evans has posted on Faceook that he believes things are progressing to a point where Alfie could go home soon.
Evans also hinted that protests could continue if Alder Hey officials don’t send Alfie home. Daniel Evans said Alfie’s dad Tom didn’t want to approach the press or have any further protests, but added that this would be “until something changes with the hospital.”
He wrote: “I have seen that people are believing this is the end of Alfie’s army? Tom has released a statement that states he will not approach media or want any protests. This will be until something changes with the hospital but we hope and pray it doesn’t.”
He continued: “They aim to get him where they have always desperately wanted him HOME. And with today’s positive meeting this could be a goal complete for Tom and Kate. I will continue to update when necessary.”
Here’s what Alfie’s father Tom Evans said yesterday outside the hospital in a public statement moments ago, apparently after meeting with hospital officials:
He said: “Our lives have been turned upside down by the intense focus on Alfie and his situation.
“Our little family along with Alder Hey has become the centre of attention for many people around the world and it has meant we have not been able to live our lives as we would like.
“We are very grateful and we appreciate all the support we have received from around the world, including from our Italian and Polish supporters, who have dedicated their time and support to our incredible fight.
“We would now ask you to return to your everyday lives and allow myself, Kate and Alder Hey to form a relationship, build a bridge and walk across it.
“Together we recognise the strains (that) recent events have put upon us all and we now wish for privacy for everyone concerned.”In Alfie’s interests we will work with his treating team on a plan that provides our boy with the dignity and comfort he needs.”From this point onwards there will be no more statements issued or interviews given. We hope you will respect this.”Thank you.”
Tom Evans appeared to confirm on Facebook that the olive leaf to Alder Hey is to help get Alfie home.
“Thank you all from the bottom off our hearts. Please respect this statement. THERES ONLY ONE ALFIES ARMY. IF THIS IS HOW WE GET OUR SON HOME THEN PLEASE RESPECT US,” he wrote.
Later, the family of Alfie Evans blasted a false news report saying his parents are supposedly preparing for his death.
As the parents of Alfie Evans were preparing to meet with hospital staff to find out if they would be able to bring him home, a prominent doctor who has studied Alfie says he is not dying and is not brain-dead and says the hospital needs to quit holding him as if he were in a prison.
Alfie supposedly has a degenerative neurological condition but that diagnosis is being challenged now that Alfie is breathing on his own without life support.
Alfie Evans’ parents will meet with staff from Alder Hey Children’s Hospital today to request permission to take Alfie home. His father Tom Evans says he would not try to take Alfie to Italy if allowed to bring Alfie home, but that he would have doctors and support staff help Alfie from their home. Alfie has survived for a third day after hospital doctors removed his life support without their permission.
Alfie’s father Tom Evans agrees his son has been misdiagnosed.
Speaking to Nick Ferrari on LBC, Alfie’s father Tom said: “For the third day now, there’s been not one single problem with him. The nurses come in and said ‘wow.’”
“Today, we’re going to have a meeting with the doctors at Alder Hey and we’ll now start asking to go home. Alfie doesn’t need intensive care anymore.”
In the new interview, Evans said, “Alfie does not need intensive care – Alfie is lying on the bed with one litre of oxygen going to his lungs and the rest is him. Some people say it’s a miracle – it’s not a miracle its a misdiagnosis.”
Evans ruled out further legal battles to attempt to take Alfie to Italy to take him to a pediatric hospital that has offered to provide appropriate medical care and treatment for him. Alfie’s parents had hoped to take the little boy to the hospital in order to potentially get treatment that could help his rare degenerative neurological condition but courts have repeatedly denied that. Justice Hayden ruled that Alfie’s family would not be able to fly him to Italy for treatment and appeared to say that this was the final decision related to his case. He said flying Alfie to Italy could harm his health because, as court testimony indicated, the flight could trigger possible “continuous seizures due to stimulations” of the flight. But Alfie’s parents are concerned Alfie will die if he doesn’t get care and possible experimental treatment in Italy.
Evans said: “We got rejected yesterday to go to Italy unfortunately. We could take it further but would that be the right thing to do, would there be more criticism?”
The decision denying travel to Italy came despite doctors representing Alder Hey Children’s Hospital misleading the court with claims it never said Alfie would die soon after it removed his life support without his parents’ permission. And officials at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital kicked out two paramedics from the air ambulance and made them leave the premises after they were talking with Alfie’s parents. This is the latest example of the hospital’s lack of care and concern for the 23-month old boy who is dealing with a rare neurological condition.
Evans indicated that Alfie is not in any pain and hardly taking any drugs — and he disputed the claim that Alfie should not be able to travel to Italy because of potential seizures, saying that Alfie has not having any seizures and is not on any anti-seizure medication because there was no problem at this time.
Previously, Evans indicated he was very concerned about Alfie’s lack of food — saying then that it has been almost 24 hours since he has had anything to eat and he is just receiving water and fluids. He was worried that hospital staff are attempting to starve Alfie to death in an attempt to prove their contention that Alfie was going to die very quickly after his removal from life support. Eventually, Alfie received food.
Previously, the judge in the controversial legal battle over the life and death of Alfie Evans told the little boy’s parents that they are not able to take him home, for now. Essentially Justice Hayden considered Alfie’s parents a flight risk and worried they would leave the country with the 23-month old boy in tow. After a decision by Italy, Alfie now has Italian citizenship which should qualify him for being able to leave the country, but courts ruled otherwise.
A British doctors group, The Medical Ethics Alliance, expressed its horror over the treatment of Alfie Evans that it called a “medical tyranny.”
And Italy’s Healthcare Chief has slammed the decisions by UK courts to treat Alfie the way that they have. The President of the Italian National Institute of Health lambasted the UK High Court’s decision yesterday on Alfie Evans’ that resulted it the children’s hospital being allowed to remove life support over Alfie’s parents’ objections.
Pope Francis has repeatedly spoken on Alfie’s behalf and urged that Alfie’s parents be allowed to bring him to Italy.
American supporters of Alfie Evans who have been wondering what they can do now have an opportunity to show their support publicly. Supporters of Alfie and his family will be gathering in Washington DC on Thursday at the British Embassy to hold a prayer vigil on their behalf.
Members of Parliament are leading a new campaign for a law to prevent the tragic situation happening to Alfie Evans and his parents from happening to any other family. The new campaign calls on MPs to debate the matter in the House of Commons – with potential plans for “Alfie’s Law.”