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Judges Considering Archie Battersbee’s Parents' Life Support Fight

Judges Considering Archie Battersbee’s Parents' Life Support Fight

The family of Archie Battersbee have appeared in court today for an appeal hearing to keep their son's hospital treatment going.

Three Court of Appeal judges have begun considering the latest stage of a life-support treatment for Archie Battersbee after his parents were granted a second hearing.

The 12-year-old was found unconscious at his home in Southend-on-Sea, Essex on 7 April. After being rushed to hospital and receiving treatment, doctors believe he is now brain dead.

However, Archie’s mum Hollie Dance and dad Paul Battersbee have fought against this decision for his treatment to be withdrawn.

Archie has not regained consciousness.

On Friday, 15 July, a second High Court judge ruled that Archie’s hospital treatment should be withdrawn, however Hollie vowed to carry on fighting for her son's life.

Judge Justice Hayden ruled that continued hospital treatment for Archie was ‘futile’ and said it is ‘unable to prolong his life’.

However, the Court of Appeal held a hearing today where Archie’s parents asked for the decision to be overturned.

Archie, who is being treated at the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel, east London, has not regained consciousness since his mother found him. Doctors have said tests showed he was ‘brain-stem dead’.

Archie is currently receiving treatment at the Royal London Hospital in east London.

Mr Justice Hayden said medical evidence was 'compelling and unanimous', and painted a 'bleak' picture.

The judge said evidence showed that Archie had suffered a 'significant injury' to 'multiple areas' of his brain and had not 'regained awareness at any time'.

"Archie's mother described him as a fighter and I have no doubt he was," said Mr Justice Hayden.

"But the fight, if it can properly be characterised as such, is no longer in Archie's control.

"The damage to his brain has deprived him of any bodily autonomy.

Paul Battersbee outside the High Court in May 2022.

"Eventually Archie's organs will fail and ultimately his heart will stop."

Another High Court judge, Mrs Justice Arbuthnot, had concluded in June that Archie was dead as of 31 May 2022.

Judge Arbuthnot said: "I find that Archie died at noon on May 31, 2022, which was shortly after the MRI scans taken that day.

"I find that irreversible cessation of brain stem function has been conclusively established.

"I give permission to the medical professionals at the Royal London Hospital to cease to ventilate mechanically Archie Battersbee."

Hollie Dance has fought for her son's life in court.

However, Court of Appeal judges upheld a challenge made by Archie's parents to decisions taken by Mrs Justice Arbuthnot, and said evidence should be reviewed.

In June the Battersbee family won their appeal to have the High Court ruling reconsidered.

Archie’s mum Hollie believes his injuries could potentially have been related to an online challenge.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: News