Judge approves forced Caesarean by London doctors

A High Court judge has given doctors permission to perform a urgent Caesarean section on a mentally-ill woman who has diabetes.

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Judge: Decision on Caesarean taken 'very seriously'

A High Court Judge heard a pregnant woman was thought to be suffering from paranoid schizophrenia and had attempted suicide.

The decision to compel a Caesarean Section on an incapacitous woman who is mentally and physically ill is an extremely draconian one,

Doctors do not embark upon this lightly. It occurs extremely rarely. It is one that the lawyers also take very seriously indeed.

– High Court judge Mr Justice Hayden.

As he ruled that doctors should be given permission to perform a urgent The judge said neither the woman nor the hospital could be identified but he said the health authority could and should be named.

He said the scrutiny of doctors' conduct could only "serve to reassure public confidence".

The Court of Protection is part of the High Court and analyses issues relating to sick and vulnerable people.

Judge orders London doctors to operate on a mentally-ill woman

A High Court judge last night gave permission for doctors to perform a caesarian on a mentally ill patient Credit: PA

London doctors were given permission to perform an urgent Caesarean section on a mentally-ill woman last night.

A High Court judge ordered the surgery after concluding that the woman lacked the mental capacity to make the decision at a hearing in the Court of Protection yesterday.

Mr Justice Hayden gave specialists working for the Royal Free London NHS Trust the go-ahead late last night. Lawyers representing the trust today said the baby had been delivered without any problem in the early hours and the woman had hugged a surgeon after recovering consciousness.

The judge described the decision as "draconian", but said he had heard evidence that the woman's life might have been in danger and had concluded the woman, who is 32 and was 32 weeks pregnant, lacked the mental capacity to make the decision herself.


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