Judge set to decide on Charlie Gard's last days

On Tuesday, the judge had indicated that the best option for Charlie's death may be a hospice - a possibility supported by the hospital and preferred by the parents to their son remaining at Great Ormond Street.

The parents, Connie Yates and Chris Gard, spent months trying to persuade Great Ormond Street Hospital to let Charlie go to the United States for experimental treatment.

"Unless by 12pm tomorrow the parents and guardian and Great Ormond Street hospital can agree alternative arrangement, Charlie will be transferred to a hospice and extubated shortly thereafter", he said. His parents accept that his condition has deteriorated to the point where the experimental treatment would not work. His condition was discovered in October, and he was admitted to Great Ormond Street Hospital. They said they'd been told the time during which treatment could have helped their son had passed - while the hospital court battle was going on.

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The hospital said it had found an "excellent hospice" with the space and privacy, and the facilities needed. "May I pay tribute to those nurses for volunteering", he said.

"The judge said he wanted to accommodate the parents" final wishes but his "guiding principle" was Charlie's best interests. Charlie was diagnosed with infantile onset encephalomyopathic mitochondrial DNA depletion syndrome, an incurable autosomal recessive disorder that causes a drop in an individual's mitochondrial DNA in affected tissues.

Nicholas Francis, the High Court judge who has presided over an agonizing series of hearings on the case, had given the parents until yesterday to find a team of intensive-care specialists willing to oversee Charlie's care at home.

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It has instead offered a hospice space for Charlie. If an agreement can not be reached, Charlie will be taken to a hospice where they will remove him from life-support. They have expressed the desire that he be moved home "for a few days of tranquility" before life support is withdrawn on July 31, four days before Charlie's first birthday.

The Telegraph said the parents wanted Charlie moved to their flat in Bedfont, west London, but a judge refused.

The decision concludes a bitter five-month legal fight from Ms Yates and Mr Gard, whose appeal to give their son treatment was previously rejected by the European Court of Human Rights.

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However, after new medical reports were revealed in court last week, Yates and Gard conceded that Charlie no longer has a chance for improvement, and on Monday withdrew their legal fight. He has brain damage and is unable to breathe unaided.


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