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Parents of sick 14 month old to appeal court decision allowing UHWI to treat child at will

John Clarke, the attorney representing the parents of a critically ill 14-month-old patient at the UHWI
 
The parents of a critically ill 14-month-old patient at the University Hospital of the West Indies (UHWI) are appealing a court ruling allowing the hospital to make decisions about the child's treatment.
 
The hospital and the parents of the child have been locked in a legal conflict over the child who has been diagnosed with leukemia.
 
A court order on September 27, has given the hospital permission to treat the infant and conduct all tests necessary as it sees fit.
 
However, John Clarke, the attorney representing the parents, has said they are appealing the ruling on the basis that the Supreme Court breached its own procedures when it made the order. 
 
"What the court essentially did was make an order allowing the hospital to become the de facto guardian of the child and to make broad decisions in relation to the child's best interest, without reference to either the court or the parents; and the parents are arguing that that is in breach of all the established principles in relation to how guardianship applications are made, and furthermore, even more problematic in that the hospital itself did not ask to be child's guardian," he said.  
 
Mr. Clarke further explained that his clients believe the ruling was premature because the court did not establish that what the parents were doing was not in the best interest of the child, which would establish the need for them to be circumvented.  
 
Mr. Clarke said the parents of the infant are still finding it difficult to get information from the hospital about the treatment of their child they are unaware whether the hospital has started administering chemotherapy.
 
The attorney said he is yet to get a response to two letters he has written to request the information. 
 
A date has not yet been set for hearing of the appeal.


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