Charlie Gard: Vatican children’s hospital offers help – BBC News

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Charlie Gard has been in intensive care since October last year

The Vatican’s children’s hospital has offered to take over care of terminally ill Charlie Gard.

The president of the Bambino Gesu hospital in Rome, Mariella Enoc, said she had asked Great Ormond Street Hospital if 10-month-old Charlie could be transferred.

It comes after US President Donald Trump and the Pope tweeted their support for Charlie on Monday.

Great Ormond Street has said Charlie cannot be moved for legal reasons.

Doctors say Charlie should be allowed to die with dignity. They have said he cannot see, hear, move, cry or swallow.

Charlie has been receiving specialist treatment at Great Ormond Street Hospital since October 2016.

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Connie Yates and Chris Gard raised more than £1.3m for experimental treatment for Charlie

Charlie’s parents raised £1.3m on a crowdfunding site to pay for the experimental treatment in the US.

But they lost a legal battle with the hospital last month with judges at the European Court of Human Rights concluding further treatment would “continue to cause Charlie significant harm”.

The Vatican’s paediatric hospital stepped in after Pope Francis called for Charlie’s parents, Chris Gard and Connie Yates, to be allowed to “accompany and treat their child until the end”.

Ms Enoc said: “I was contacted by the mother, who is a very determined and decisive person and doesn’t want to be stopped by anything.”

Lord Winston told ITV’s Good Morning Britain courts and doctors should not be interfering with the parents’ wishes, saying the loss of a child was “about the worst injury that any person can have”.

But he added: “These interferences from the Vatican and from Donald Trump seem to me to be extremely unhelpful and very cruel, actually, because this child has been dealt with at a hospital which has huge expertise in mitochondrial disease and is being offered a break in a hospital that has never published anything on this disease, as far as I’m aware.”

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Franco Origlia

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The Vatican said the Pope was following the case “with affection and sadness”

The Vatican said the Pope was following the case “with affection and sadness”.

In a statement the Vatican said the Pope “expresses his closeness to his [Charlie's] parents”.

“For them he prays, hoping that their desire to accompany and care for their own child to the end is not ignored,” it said.

Mr Trump tweeted on Monday: “If we can help little #CharlieGard, as per our friends in the UK and the Pope, we would be delighted to do so.”

Charlie’s parents Connie Yates and Chris Gard from Bedfont, west London, have spent the last days of their son’s life with him, after being given more time before his life-support is turned off.

Earlier this week they said the hospital had denied their final wish to be able to take their son home to die, and felt “let down”.


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