The parents of a critically ill baby at the centre of a life-support treatment fight are preparing for an appeal hearing and say they will “do whatever it takes”.
A High Court judge recently ruled that doctors could lawfully limit the treatment they provide to Indi Gregory – who will be eight months old on Tuesday – against the wishes of her parents, Dean Gregory and Claire Staniforth.
Mr Justice Peel heard evidence about Indi’s condition at a private trial in the Family Division of the High Court, in London.
Indi’s parents, who are both in their 30s and from Ilkeston, Derbyshire, have challenged Mr Justice Peel’s ruling.
Two appeal judges, Lady Justice King and Lord Justice Birss, are due to consider arguments, at a Court of Appeal hearing, at the Royal Courts of Justice, in London, in the next few hours.
Indi’s parents, who are being supported by campaign group the Christian Legal Centre, said on Monday that they were “devastated” by Mr Justice Peel’s decision.
Mr Gregory added in a statement issued through the Christian Legal Centre: “I, and we as a family, are prepared to do whatever it takes to fight for the life of our beautiful daughter, Indi.”
Mr Justice Peel heard that Indi, who was born on February 24 2023, has mitochondrial disease, a genetic condition that saps energy, and is being treated at the Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham.
Specialists say she is dying and bosses at the hospital’s governing trust asked Mr Justice Peel to rule that doctors could lawfully limit treatment provided to her.
Barrister Emma Sutton KC, who led Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust’s legal team, told Mr Justice Peel that Indi was critically ill and had an exceptionally rare and devastating neurometabolic disorder.
She said the treatment Indi received caused pain and was futile.
Her parents disagree.
“During her short life Indi has proved everybody wrong and deserves more time and care from the NHS rather than seeking to end her life as soon as possible,” Mr Gregory said on Monday.
“Indi can definitely experience happiness. She cries like a normal baby. We know she is disabled, but you don’t just let disabled people die.”
He went on: “We just want to give her a chance.”
Mr Justice Peel considered evidence behind closed doors, but he allowed journalists to attend the hearing and ruled that Indi, her parents and the hospital could be named in reports.
He ruled that medics treating Indi and a guardian appointed to represent her interests could not be named.