Intended for healthcare professionals


NHS urged to help reduce conflicts between staff and parents of critically ill children

BMJ 2019; 365 doi: (Published 04 April 2019) Cite this as: BMJ 2019;365:l1625
  1. Clare Dyer
  1. The BMJ

NHS policy makers should take action to try to reduce the risk of disputes developing between doctors and parents over the treatment of critically ill children and to tackle them when they arise, the Nuffield Council on Bioethics has urged.1

The council cited the recent high profile cases of Charlie Gard and Alfie Evans, babies born with untreatable conditions. Their cases turned into media campaigns, lengthy court battles, and threats from the public to healthcare staff at Great Ormond Street and Alder Hey children’s hospitals.

Alfie Evans’ case drew the attention of pro-life activists and went through multiple court hearings, ending up in the Supreme Court, although there was no evidence that …

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