Charlie Gard: Parents 'denied final wish' after judge approves plan for end of baby's life

Charlie Gard will "inevitably" die shortly after being moved to a hospice and having life-support treatment withdrawn, under a plan approved by a High Court judge.

Mr Justice Francis has approved a timetable to govern the final period of the terminally-ill baby's life.

Doctors at Great Ormond Street Hospital and Charlie's parents Chris Gard and Connie Yates disagreed over how long he should receive life-support treatment for.

Medics said he should move to a hospice soon and life-support treatment should end shortly after his arrival.

His parents wanted more time with him and said he should receive life-support treatment for a number of days.

Great Ormond Street said it deeply regrets "that profound and heartfelt differences" between Charlie's doctors and his parents "have had to be played out in court over such a protracted period".

Ms Yates said that the hospital had "denied us our final wish".

She said: "We just want some peace with our son, no hospital, no lawyers, no courts, no media just quality time with Charlie away from everything to say goodbye to him in the most loving way.

"Most people won't ever have to go through what we have been through, we've had no control over our son's life and no control over our son's death."

Ms Yates said arrangements had been made so they could spend a few days making "precious memories with our beloved son" but that this had been rejected by the judge.

"This subsequently gives us very little time with our son," she said.

"I'm shocked that after all we've been through they won't allow us this extra time."

Great Ormond Street said they had tried "absolutely everything" to accommodate the final wishes of Charlie's parents, including "exploring the unprecedented step of delivering intensive life support away from a hospital intensive care unit".

"Sadly, as the judge has now ruled, there is simply no way that Charlie, a patient with such severe and complex needs, can spend any significant time outside of an intensive care environment safely," the hospital said in a statement.

Doctors at Great Ormond Street said the therapy in the US would not help Charlie. Credit: Gard family

"The risk of an unplanned and chaotic end to Charlie's life is an unthinkable outcome for all concerned and would rob his parents of precious last moments with him."

"We will arrange for Charlie to be transferred to a specialist children's hospice, whose remarkable and compassionate staff will support his family at this impossible time."

The judge's order said it is in Charlie's best interests for life-support treatment to be withdrawn and that he should receive palliative care.

The order says Charlie will continue to be treated at Great Ormond Street for a "period" of time before being moved to the hospice, which cannot be named for legal reasons.

Doctors can then withdraw "artificial ventilation" after a "period" of time.

The order says everyone involved agrees that the "arrangements" will "inevitably result in Charlie's death within a short period thereafter".

Charlie was born a healthy baby but doctors discovered he had a rare inherited disease. Credit: Gard family
  • Full statement by Connie Yates, Charlie Gard's mother