Editor’s note. Alfie Evans died early Saturday morning.
WASHINGTON – National Right to Life, the federation of 50 state right-to-life affiliates and more than 3,000 local chapters, grieves with Thomas Evans and Kate James over the death of their son, Alfie. The 23-month-old toddler died five days after doctors at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool, England removed him from a ventilator.
Alfie suffered from a degenerative neurological condition and administrators at Alder Hey, which is a National Health System Foundation Trust, sought, and received, approval from the High Court to discontinue treatment in direct opposition to the wishes of Alfie’s parents. The High Court’s decision was met with outcry around the world, and was condemned by world leaders including European Parliament President Antonio Tajani, Polish president Andrezej Duda, and Pope Francis.
Bambino Gesu Hospital in Rome offered to treat Alfie and he was granted Italian citizenship to expedite his transport to Italy. However, the High Court prohibited Evans and James from removing their son from Alder Hey.
“The story of Alfie Evans is heartbreaking and we extend our deepest sympathies to Thomas Evans and Kate James, who must now cope with the intentional death of their baby boy,” said Carol Tobias, president of National Right to Life.
No parent should ever have to bury their child, and no parent should ever be forced to the sidelines while the government decides whether their child will receive medical treatment or not.
Let’s be clear: Alfie Evans was sentenced to death by Britain’s National Health System and its High Court. Their intransigent commitment to the country’s faulty single-payer health system led them to conclude it was better for Alfie to die than leave the country and receive treatment elsewhere.
The prayers of every right-to-life activist, both here and around the world, are with Tom and Kate, and I hope that brings them some level of comfort and peace.