Life of Charlie Gard Still Hangs in Balance, U.S. Legislators Intervene

Harvard-trained neurologist Michio Hirano spent five hours examining 11-month-old Charlie Gard in London on Monday to see if he would be a good candidate for experimental treatment in the United States. Hirano, who specializes in Charlie’s rare form of mitochondrial depletion syndrome and would perform the experimental therapy, says his treatment might save the British baby’s life.

Results of a lengthy brain scan on Monday and Tuesday were given to British High Court Judge Nicholas Francis, who will determine by next Tuesday whether Great Ormond Street Hospital will take away Charlies’ life support or will allow him to get the experimental treatment in America.

In the meantime, however, U.S. lawmakers in the House passed an amendment to a Homeland Security Appropriations bill that, if signed into law, would grant little Charlie and his parents permanent resident status so he could obtain treatment in the United States. This latest twist could mean that Charlie’s parents may no longer need British medical permission to care for their son.

Incidentally, while Charlie has found many advocates willing to fight for his life far from home, Charlie’s government-appointed British lawyer, Victoria Butler-Cole, is anything but pro-life. As the chairman of Britain’s Compassion in Dying, Butler-Cole would likely opt for euthanizing the infant.

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