Relatives wait for appeal ruling on grandmother left paralysed by Covid


elatives of a grandmother in her 50s left brain-damaged and paralysed from the neck down after contracting Covid-19 are waiting for a ruling on the latest stage of a life-support treatment fight.

A judge ruled earlier this year that the woman should be allowed to die.

Relatives challenged that decision at a Court of Appeal hearing a few weeks ago.

Appeal judges are scheduled to publish a ruling on Thursday.

Mr Justice Hayden initially considered evidence at a trial in the Court of Protection where judges oversee hearings centred on adults who lack the mental capacity to make decisions, in London and concluded that life-support treatment should stop by the end of October.

Specialists treating the woman – who doctors have described as the most complicated Covid patient in the world – at Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge said life-support treatment should end.

The woman’s relatives disagreed and said she should be given more time.

Sir Andrew McFarlane is due to hear the appeal (Courts and Tribunals Judiciary/PA) / PA Media

Sir Andrew McFarlane, the most senior Court of Protection judge in England and Wales, Lord Justice Moylan and Sir Nicholas Patten heard argument at a Court of Appeal hearing in London in early November.

Lawyers say life-support treatment will continue until the three appeal judges have made a decision.

Doctors told Mr Justice Hayden, who is based in the Family Division of the High Court, the woman was the “most complicated” Covid-19 patient in the world.

Specialists at Addenbrooke’s said there was nothing they could do to make “any aspect of her condition better” and that life-support treatment was causing her distress and adding to her “burden”.

The woman is being treated at Addenbrooke’s Hospital (Andrew Parsons/PA) / PA Archive

They thought that her life expectancy could be measured in months and said moving her to a palliative care regime would enable her to die peacefully and without distress.

Mr Justice Hayden said it was the first time a judge had considered an end-of-life case as a result of Covid-19.

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