Saturday, July 29, 2017

Lessons from Charlie Gard

The sensational life of Charlie Gard, the angelic child who was a victim of mitochondrial DNA depletion syndrome has ended, but not before teaching us a lot of lessons about life and death. As we mourn his passing away, we need to admit our inability to understand the ways of nature completely.

Parents of Charlie Gard initially wanted to try an experimental treatment offered by a particular doctor in the U.S. The hospital in England where the child was in a ventilator was sceptical about this treatment and in fact about any other treatment for his unfortunate condition. HH the Pope and President Trump were on the same page supporting the parents in a desperate attempt to save the child or at least to prolong his life.

This is a classic example where it is almost impossible to decide what is just and ethical. Should a life be sought to be saved at any cost? Is it just to deny a possible opportunity for sustained life simply because the suggested treatment was possibly never tried earlier? What about dignity of life? Is it fair to keep a life without the ability to see, hear and think and thus dependent on others for life?

Who has the authority to decide, doctors, parents or the state?  This is a puzzle we may never be able to solve.

1 comment:

akji said...

The doctor and the parents should decide with the permission of the State. The parent and the Doctor should decide as to whether the child can lead a normal life without leaning on somebody.