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Alfie Evans dies.

Minivanman
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Alfie Evans dies.

So sad to read this morning that Alfie Evans has died after the withdrawal of life support, but at least he is now at peace and away from those who, best known to themselves, felt the need to make a song and dance media circus about it whilst criticizing the hospital who had done nothing less in my view than to give him the best care possible for months, under pressure from all quarters and against their better judgment. 

I'm a parent and grandparent myself, and a greater love would have been to allow this little chap to slip peacefully away long ago allowing time and resources to be used elsewhere.

Sleep well little fella. Cry

I know where I am, I've been lost here before.
24 REPLIES
Luzern
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Re: Alfie Evans dies.

Absolutely

No one has to agree with my opinion, but in the time I have left a miracle would be nice.
harrym1byt
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Re: Alfie Evans dies.

Most would not torture an animal in that way, keeping it alive when it had no chance of surviving. My sympathies are firmly with the hospital staff and doctors.

Champnet
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Re: Alfie Evans dies.

We must not forget, It’s the hope of his family that’s also died. 

harrym1byt
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Re: Alfie Evans dies.

From what the BBC News is saying, he has had no chance of any quality of life for at least the past 12months - he was brain damaged 12 months ago. His family should just try to get over it, rather than expecting the hospital and doctors to achieve the impossible and keep a person alive in what would be just a miserable existence.

A while ago, I did some research into my family history and was surprised at just how many kids they had at the turn of the previous century(1900). They obviously had large numbers of kids, because so many just were not expected to survive. Four out of seven in my maternal side passed away before they got to their teens. Things are very different now, but they cannot perform miracles.

 

Minivanman
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Re: Alfie Evans dies.

@Champnet

"We must not forget, It’s the hope of his family that’s also died" 

I would suggest it was more to do with faith on their part rather than hope, hence all that business with the Pope.

I know where I am, I've been lost here before.
John_Hull
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Re: Alfie Evans dies.

And as for the baying mob outside; as Sir Terry Pratchett said, "The IQ of a mob, is the IQ of it's dumbest member, divided by the number of mobsters."

JPN
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Re: Alfie Evans dies.

The reality of the situation is, as always, far more complicated.

In February Alfie's parents, having disagreed with the doctors on how his care had proceeded, ended up in court with no legal representation.  This ended up with the court taking to itself the decision as to what were 'in the best interests of the child'.  These best interests have always been regarded as the child's parents right to decide UNLESS there was serious indication that they were not able to exercise that right. There is no indication of that with Alfies parents.

They disagreed strongly with the 'pathway' wanted by the doctors, which included chemical supression of his breathing rather than just allowing him to die.  Withdrawal of 'treatment' these days can also include withdrawal of food and water (which it never has done in the past). 

A good summary of the ethics in this situation can be found here:

http://www.bioethics.org.uk/images/user/alfieevansstatement.pdf

After this point it became increasingly difficult to challenge the process because everything was trumped by the court (or the lawyer appointed by the court to represent the child) claiming 'best interest' on its side.

It was only then that legal help was offered to Alfie's parents by a variety of groups (not one single group - different lawyers handled different parts of the process).

The key parts of the challenges were that 1) the parents had a right to be involved in determining the 'best interests'.

2) That they had a right to seek treatment as they felt appropriate

3) Palliative treatment should include water and nutrition.

At no stage (as the Judges agreed) was Alfie in pain, or in undue discomfort and distress.

The presence of the police at AlderHey was to prevent Alfies removal by the parents. Control of (very largely peacable) crowds was a secondary issue.

Plenty of well qualified medical teams were willing and able to help.

 

As I said, a complex and difficult situation.

 

Minivanman
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Re: Alfie Evans dies.

Thanks for the link and yes of course the reality is complicated but everyone parents included had the best interest of Alfie in mind and for sure, there was a power imbalance here but were they right, and who were these experts from Italy? 

They visited the child in Liverpool and they agreed that further treatment would be futile. Alfie would have been taken to Rome, operated on, helped in breathe easier, and receive food. There would have been no cure.

Seems to me that faith, hope and a belief in the miracle of publicity got in the way of reality and not the other way round as it should, and as it has been. 

'No life is worthless' as that Bioethics statement concludes -  and lets all agree on that, but there does come a time when it is pointless and this in my opinion was one of those times.   

 

I know where I am, I've been lost here before.
Jonpe
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Re: Alfie Evans dies.

There was a two-part documentary on TV recently dealing with issues like this, and it showed some of the many factors to be taken into consideration, and the effect of each case on the staff as well as the child's parents.

Luzern
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Re: Alfie Evans dies.


@Champnet wrote:

We must not forget, It’s the hope of his family that’s also died. 


@Champnet I think your statement is too absolute. Yes, their hope of successfully raising their son to maturity and beyond has not come about, and it is horrifically painful to them. Yet, maybe, they'll come to realise they have been relieved of a burden. Moreover, they're young, so, if they are truly an established couple, they still have the hope of a family. Hope unrealised does not remove all hope.

 

No one has to agree with my opinion, but in the time I have left a miracle would be nice.
Champnet
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Re: Alfie Evans dies.

Agreed.......

Luzern
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Re: Alfie Evans dies.


@Minivanman wrote:

@Champnet

"We must not forget, It’s the hope of his family that’s also died" 

I would suggest it was more to do with faith on their part rather than hope, hence all that business with the Pope.


@Minivanman Let's assume you're correct in your thinking, Smiley and they have faith. If that led them to extreme hope against all hope, then rather than evidence of faith ISTM it may have been closer to wishful thinking than faith. Faith has to know, when to let go.  

 The basis of Christian hope, OTOH, refers to a desire for something we are certain to receive, an assurance concerning the future. This is Christian hope. However uncertain our circumstances, or however God may answer our prayers, we know for certain He will work all things together for our good (Romans 8:28). As believers, we often have uncertain and certain hope at the same time. [paraphrased quote fromBible.org]

I'm sure most of you will think, " what a crank"!  So be it, but it was you, who joined the matters of faith and hope.Wink

 

No one has to agree with my opinion, but in the time I have left a miracle would be nice.
Minivanman
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Re: Alfie Evans dies.

I was actually making the fragile connection between faith and hope, and reason.

Within religion, faith and hope are seen and attributed in ways that fit a particular system of course, whereas reason is problematic to say the least. 

This little chap seemed to be getting torn between the two but, all over with now and may you hope and pray we do not get another case like it any time soon. 

In the meantime, I'll put my faith in reason. Smiley

I know where I am, I've been lost here before.
Luzern
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Re: Alfie Evans dies.

@Minivanman Thanks for the smiley at the end of your post. Although we differ over the relationship of faith and reason, I feel we have realism over the situation in common.

No one has to agree with my opinion, but in the time I have left a miracle would be nice.