A family in the U.K. said they are receiving invaluable advice from Charlie Gard’s mother as they fight an uphill battle to keep their son alive. Alfie Evans, who is 15-months-old, has been in a coma for eight months, with doctors suspecting that he has mitochondrial depletion syndrome, Metro News reported.
His parents, Thomas Evans and Kate James, launched a fundraising campaign in the hopes of bringing Alfie abroad for treatment, but are concerned that the courts will prevent their efforts, similar to what happened with Charlie.
“The doctors have indicated that his parents should withdraw life support and ‘allow him to die peacefully’ because that’s ‘in his best interest,’” the family said in a statement, according to Metro News.
But Evans counters that his son is not in a vegetative state, and vowed not to give up their fight. Alfie is currently at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool, where doctors have given him days to live. According to an aunt, the family has been receiving advice from Charlie’s mother, Connie Yates, about fundraising and how to contact specialists.
Charlie died in July after his case received international attention over the highly publicized court battle to treat him with an experimental approach in the U.S. Yates and Charlie’s father, Chris Gard, had raised $1.7 million to take their son to the U.S. for a treatment, but lost their months-long court battle. Alfie’s aunt has accused her nephew’s doctors of shying away from the case over fear of backlash, Metro News reported.
“He is currently intubated and has a ventilator helping him to breathe, but is also seen by doctors and family breaths himself,” Evans said, according to Metro News. “He has come off life support three times and shown he can manage a maximum of 13 days without the ventilator. We believe that is someone out there who knows and can help us find out what is wrong with Alfie, so that we may create and follow a proper medical plan of car for him.”
According to the family’s JustGiving website, Alfie was born healthy but missed developmental milestones. He then contracted a chest infection and suffered a seizure, which landed him in the hospital, where he has developed chronic seizures and is continuing to decline.
“Our little soldier has had a better day today,” Evans wrote in an Aug. 24 post on the Alfie’s Army Facebook page. “The last two days have been critical for him, but although he is still very poorly, he has stabilized today. He is taking breaths and is trying to open his eyes during seizures.”