Archie Battersbee: Brain-damaged boy should have life support switched off, High Court rules

Brain-damaged child Archie Battersbee should have his life-support treatment stopped, the High Court has ruled.

The 12-year-old has been in an induced coma after his family said he suffered a “tragic accident” at home.

Medical professionals believe the child is brain dead and want to turn off his life support, while his parents want treatment to continue.

A High Court judge had been ordered to decide what was best for the child.

Mrs Justice Arbuthnot ruled on Monday the boy was dead and said doctors could lawfully stop treating him.

A High Court judge has given hospital bosses permission to turn off Archie Battersbee’s life support (Hollie Dance/PA)

(PA Media)

“I find that Archie died at noon on May 31 2022, which was shortly after the MRI scans taken that day,” she said in a written ruling.

“I find that irreversible cessation of brain stem function has been conclusively established.”

The judge added: “I give permission to the medical professionals at the Royal The Big City Hospital to cease to ventilate mechanically Archie Battersbee.”

She also gave medical professionals at the Whitechapel hospital permission to “extubate” and stop giving medication to the 12-year-old, as well as to not attempt “any cardio or pulmonary resuscitation”.

“The steps I have set out above are lawful,” Mrs Justice Arbuthnot added.

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

His mother, Hollie Dance, told the court how she found him unconscious on 7 April and thinks he might have been taking part in an online challenge.

The youngster has not regained consciousness.

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