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[Comment] Beyond resources: denying parental requests for futile treatment

The difficult case of the British boy Charlie Gard1 is the latest in a series of court cases in the UK when parents and doctors have disagreed about medical treatment for a child.2 Charlie Gard is a 9-month-old boy with the rare neurodegenerative disorder severe encephalomyopathic mitochondrial DNA depletion syndrome. He is dependent on life support and has been in intensive care at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children in London, UK, since October, 2016. In such disputes, typically, doctors regard life support treatment as “futile” or “potentially inappropriate”.

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