Parents of a 12-year-old boy, at the treatment center, are arguing over an appeal hearing


The parents of a 12-year-old boy in the center of a life-support treatment dispute prepare for an appeals court hearing after a Supreme Court judge concluded the young man’s death.

Judge Arbuthnot recently ruled that doctors could legally stop providing treatment to Archie Battersby, after considering evidence in a trial at the Family Division of the High Court in London.

Appeals court judges are due to hear the case at a hearing in London on Wednesday.

Doctors treating Archie at the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel, east London, have told Mrs. Arbuthnot they believe he is a “brainstem dead”.

Archie Battersby’s mother, Holly Dance, outside the High Court, central London. (James Manning/PA)

They said the treatment had to end and Archie should be taken off the ventilator.

Archie’s parents, Holly Dance and Paul Battersby, of Southend, Essex, say his heart is still beating and wants treatment to continue.

Lawyers representing the Royal London Hospital’s governing trust, Barts Health NHS Trust, have asked Justice Arbuthnot to decide what moves are in Archie’s best interest.

Mrs. Arbuthnot concluded that Archie is dead, and said the treatment must come to an end.

But she said there was a “compelling reason” for appeals judges to hear the case.

Archie Battersby’s father Paul Battersby outside the High Court in central London. PA / James Manning / PA . wire

A lawyer leading Archie’s parents’ legal team argued that the evidence did not appear “beyond a reasonable doubt” for his death.

Edward Devereux QC said the decision was made on the basis of a balance of probabilities.

He argued that a decision of such “seriousness” should have been taken on the basis of “beyond reasonable doubt”.

Mrs. Arbuthnot decided that the appellate judges should consider the question of the standard of evidence.

Archie suffered brain damage in an accident at home in early April.

Ms Dance said she found her son unconscious with a tie over his head on April 7 and believes he may have been participating in an online challenge.

He did not regain consciousness.

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