Archie Battersbee: Future of 12-year-old boy on life support to be decided by High Court | UK News


A dispute over the future of a 12-year-old boy who is on life support will be heard in the High Court today.

Archie Battersbee is being treated at the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel and doctors believe it is “highly likely” he is dead and say the treatment should end.

However, his parents, Paul Battersbee and Hollie Dance, from Southend, Essex, disagree.

Undated family handout photo of Archie Battersbee, 12, who's mother Hollie Dance, 46, is at the centre of a High Court life-treatment dispute has urged a judge to give the youngster "more time
Doctors believe that Archie is dead but his mother wants experts to give him more time

Lawyers representing the hospital’s governing trust, Barts Health NHS Trust, have asked Mrs Justice Emma Arbuthnot to decide whether doctors should continue treating Archie.

She is scheduled to begin overseeing a final hearing in the Family Division of the High Court in London on Monday.

The judge has previously heard that Archie suffered from brain damage in an incident at home in early April.

His mother told the court how she found him unconscious with a ligature over his head on 7 April and thinks he might have been taking part in an online challenge.

He has not regained consciousness since.

During a hearing in May, Mrs Justice Arbuthnot ruled that doctors can try to establish whether he is dead and said a brain stem test would be in Archie’s best interests.

Ella Carter and Hollie Dance
Hollie Dance (right) said she was disgusted by the court’s previous ruling

Ms Dance has urged the judge to give her son “more time” and said she was “disgusted” by the verdict, adding it has been “absolute hell watching my other children hear over and over again by the hospital trust that my child is already dead”.

One specialist told the judge at a previous hearing that he thought scans showed that Archie had suffered “irretrievable” brain damage and two others said they thought tests showed that he was “brain-stem dead”.


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