Parents lose ’right to life’ fight

Charlotte Wyatt, born three months prematurely, has severe breathing and neurological problems and lives in a plastic oxygen feed.

Doctors argued Charlotte- who has already stopped breathing three times and been revived – would have “a terrible quality of life” if she survived.

High Court Justice Sir Mark Hedley rendered his decision after parents Darren and Debbie Wyatt, who are expecting their third child, urged him not to give up on their 11-month-old daughter.

In handing down the judgement, Hedley said Charlotte should be given three things:

“As much comfort as possible, as much time as possible to spend in the presence and in contact with her parents, and she should be allowed to meet her end, in the words of Mr Wyatt, with the TLC (tender loving care) of those who love her the most.”

Mrs Wyatt looked shocked at judge’s decision, but refused to comment as she left the Royal Courts of Justice in central London.

But lawyer for the couple, Richard Stein told reporters:

“They have asked me to say that they feel it was most important that the issues in the case have been aired in public because as a result everyone has had an opportunity to consider the extremely difficult issues faced by them and numerous other parents in their position.”

Sky News television said the parents would not appeal the ruling, which added a new chapter to an ethnical debate in Britain as to how long a patient on life support should be allowed to live.

Last week, Charlotte’s father, who is 33, made an impassioned plea to the judge not to allow the doctors to let her die despite the fact that she would be disabled if she survived.

Prior to Thursday’s ruling, Mr Wyatt had conceded that, if the time came when the baby was really suffering, he would have to change his mind

Portsmouth Hospitals, in southern England, had asked the judge for a declaration allowing doctors not to ventilate Charlotte in the event of a future critical respiratory episode.

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