Pope reverses Vatican stand on British sick baby case

Thursday, 06 Jul, 2017

The U.K. hospital recently won a court case against the couple that allows it to turn off life support and let Charlie die.

The unnamed hospital has allegedly offered a new experimental treatment at no cost - if he is granted permission to travel.

Now, the date Charlie's life support will be switched off appears to be up in the air, as the hospital is allowing the parents to spend more time with their child.

Mariella Enoc, president of the Vatican's Bambino Gesu Children's Hospital, issued a statement requesting the director of the London hospital where Charlie is hospitalized, to verify whether the health conditions exist to transfer Charlie to her hospital.

"We know that the case is desperate and that, until now, there are no effective therapies", the hospital statement said.

"I was contacted by the mother, who is a very determined and decisive person and doesn't want to be stopped by anything", Enoc told reporters.

Charlie is suffering from mitochondrial depletion syndrome, a rare and complex disease.

Boris Johnson has insisted that Charlie Gard's future should be decided by "expert medical opinion" and supported by the courts. The controversy around Gard has engulfed the Vatican, which infuriated some on the right by not immediately siding entirely with the parents, who want to seek experimental medication in the USA or bring their child home to die. But the European Court of Human Rights refused to intervene last week.

The baby's parents, Chris Gard and Connie Yates, made an appeal to the European Court of Human Rights to overturn the ruling and allow them to take the baby to the USA for an experimental treatment, but it refused to intervene.

A Vatican-owned children's hospital is offering to take 10-month-old Charlie Gard into its care.

The life support he is receiving at a London hospital soon will be turned off over the objections of his parents, who want to take him to the United States for experimental therapy they believe could prolong his life. Pope Francis has also used his Twitter account on Friday, the day the infant was supposed to be taken off life support, sending a clear pro-life message. In other words, the hospital is legally justified in removing the child from life support so that he is no longer suffering.

U.S. president Donald Trump has also offered to help the family. She said: 'These years have been full of satisfactions, great and unexpected surprises, main one of those being Mele's artistic talent, but also his passion for chess game, him entering in the boy-scouts, going to ski, climbing a mountain with a special wheelchair, meeting Pope Benedict, and many, many more.

The Pope had earlier said he was praying for Charlie's parents and was following the situation "with affection and commotion".