Sick 23-month-old Alfie Evans is defying the medical team at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital, still fighting for his life after the state mandated that his life-support be removed. After breathing on his own for hours on end, the hospital finally gave the boy oxygen and water, says father Tom Evans.
And, now, more hope is seemingly on the horizon for the young family. “A High Court judge is preparing to consider further issues in the case of a 23-month-old boy who has been at the centre of a life-support treatment battle. Mr Justice Hayden is scheduled to oversee another hearing in Alfie Evans’s case in the Family Division of the High Court in Manchester in the next few hours,” reported Metro on Tuesday morning.
The boy, who is believed to have encephalomyopathic mitochondrial DNA depletion syndrome, had his ventilator removed on Monday evening after the family lost a legal battle with the hospital which claimed it was not in Alfie’s “best interests” to stay on life support, but to die instead.
Before the child had his life-support removed, “Mr Justice Hayden had dismissed a ‘last-ditch appeal’ by Mr Evans and Alfie’s mother, Kate James, to be given more time to mount a further challenge to a decision to end treatment,” notes Metro.
“He is still working, he’s doing as good as he can,” Mr. Evans told reporters outside the hospital on Tuesday.
“But we do need him to be supported … in the next hour it’s going to be hard but we will need him to be supported in the next hour or two,” he said. “Because he’s been doing it for nine hours totally unexpected, the doctors are gobsmacked and I do believe he will need some form of life-support in the next couple of hours and I think he ought to be respected and given that.”
Baby Alfie was granted Italian citizenship in a desperate effort for the boy to be allowed to leave the U.K. and seek treatment elsewhere. The family has so far been denied this request and officers are reportedly stationed in the hospital to prevent Mr. Evans from taking his son.
“They say Alfie’s suffering,” said Mr. Evans. “Well, look at him now. He’s not even on a ventilator and he’s not suffering. … They left him for six hours without food, water and oxygen. I felt blessed when they confirmed they were going to give him his water and his oxygen. He’s now on oxygen. It’s not changing his breathing but it’s oxygenating his body.”