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Charlie Gard to be examined by United States doctor who created experimental treatment
17 July 2017, 06:35 | Todd Saunders
The 11-month-old suffers from a rare genetic condition but his parents say claims by his doctors that he is irreparably brain damaged are false
A judge ruled that Charlie's mother Connie Yates could be present for the gathering.
TOP doctors are examining terminally ill Charlie Gard at Great Ormond Street to test whether he is able to have potentially life saving treatment. But Britain's courts have refused permission on the grounds it would prolong his suffering without a realistic prospect of it helping. The case attracted worldwide attention after Pope Francis and President Donald Trump weighed in. It has prompted a heated debate about whether the hospital treating the child or his parents should determine his fate.
Charlie suffers from mitochondrial depletion syndrome, a rare genetic disease that has left him brain-damaged and unable to breathe unaided.
Charlie's parents Chris Gard and Connie Yates are now making their case in the High Court seeking a ruling allowing their 11-month-old son to travel to NY for experimental treatment.
Baby Charlie Gard, the 11-month-old with a rare, terminal medical condition who has been the center of an ongoing legal battle, will be evaluated by a doctor from the United States.
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Dr Hirano has said he believes there is now a better chance the treatment would produce a meaningful improvement than there was when he gave evidence three months earlier.
Hirano, who has been providing evidence to the High Court via video link, suggested that now, there is clinical data that were not available in April, and he thought the therapy was "worth trying".
After a series of hearings and appeals in several courts, the European Court of Human Rights decided on June 30 not to intervene in the case, which upheld a British Supreme Court decision that the hospital could discontinue life support to Charlie and he could not be transferred.
On Thursday, Hirano told Justice Nicholas Francis that the baby's MRI scan did not necessarily indicate structural damage to the brain. He said the better muscular strength would allow a better assessment of his brain condition. Charlie will die from his illness, his doctors have said.
However, he had never seen Charlie and has had limited access to his medical records, so it was agreed Hirano should come to Britain to see him and also to discuss the case with doctors involved in his treatment and other independent medical specialists.
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