Archie Battersby’s family will make a ‘last minute’ appeal to move him to hospice

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The family of 12-year-old Archie Battersby have vowed to “fight” to have him moved to a hospice, insisting he be allowed to choose where he spends his “last moments”.

The family has now applied to the High Court in London to have him transferred out of the Royal London Hospital, after the European Court of Human Rights rejected his last-ditch attempt to delay the withdrawal of his life support. intends to

The boy’s mother, Holly Dance, said she felt “absolutely gutted” after the European Court of Justice decided not to intervene in the case on Wednesday evening.

Barts Health NHS Trust said Archie’s life support would be withdrawn at 11am on Thursday until a statutory request for a transfer to hospice was submitted by 9am, a family spokesman told the PA news agency. Not done.

He confirmed that the family intended to submit such an application, calling it “absolutely outrageous and absolutely disgusting that we are not even allowed to choose where Archie spends his last moments”.

The child has been in a coma since he was found unconscious in April and is being kept alive by medical interventions, including ventilation and medication, at Whitechapel Hospital in east London.

Archie Battersby with his mother Holly Dance (Family Handout/PA) / PA Media

The trust said Archie’s condition was too unstable to be transferred and taking him by ambulance to a different setting would “most likely hasten the premature deterioration which the family wishes to avoid, here Even with intensive care equipment and staff on board”.

A High Court order in July ordered Archie to remain in the Royal London Hospital until his treatment was withdrawn.

A spokesman for the family said a hospice had agreed to take him in, adding: “Hospices are well and truly designed for curative and respite care.

“Archie is now clearly on palliative care so there is no reason for him not to spend his final moments in a hospital.”

Ms Dance said she wanted her son to have a “dignified hospital stay”, adding it was “unfair” she would have to “fight” to get him out of hospital.

Reacting to the European Court ruling, she tearfully said: “One thing I will say, I promised him I would fight to the end and I have done exactly that.”

Archie Battersby’s parents have been involved in legal action over their son’s condition (Holly Dance/PA) / PA Media

Ms Dance submitted the application to the European Court of Justice alongside Archie’s father Paul Battersby, hours before Barts Health NHS Trust was expected to withdraw her son’s life support on Wednesday.

Asked by reporters outside the hospital if the defeat felt different, he said: “It’s the end. It was the end, wasn’t it? And our country has failed a 12-year-old once again. .

She claimed the hospital had also “failed” her son, saying: “I would like him to be out of here as soon as possible, and to say goodbye in a peaceful hospice and spend time with his family, Without the noise and chaos.”

Barts Health NHS Trust did not provide an update when asked about the withdrawal of life support.

Ms Dance said she would not allow anything to happen before Archie’s father returned to his bedside in hospital on Thursday.

UK Supreme Court judges have previously said they had “great sympathy” for Archie’s parents but added there was “no prospect of any meaningful recovery”.

Ms Dance and Mr Battersby have been involved in a series of legal efforts over their son’s condition.

Holly Dance vows to fight for her son “to the bitter end” (Dominic Lipinski/PA) / PA Wire

The boy was found unconscious in his home by his mother on April 7 and has not regained consciousness since then. He believes he was participating in an online challenge.

Ms Dance and Mr Battersby were allowed to appear at the Court of Appeal on Monday after the government asked judges to urgently consider a UN committee’s request to continue Archie’s treatment while they consider his case. Reviewing.

However, after considering the matter, the three judges refused to postpone the withdrawal of life-sustaining treatment until after noon on Tuesday.

He also refused to allow an appeal against his decision to the Supreme Court.

He filed a petition directly with the Supreme Court, asking to continue his treatment to give time to the United Nations Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) to consider his complaint, which was filed last week. was

But, in refusing permission to appeal, a three-judge panel concluded that the Court of Appeal “got it right”.

In its ruling on Wednesday, the European court said it would not “interfere with the decisions of national courts to allow (Archie) life-sustaining treatment to proceed”.