Application by Trust seeking a declaration that it is no longer in AH's best interests to receive ventilatory support and treatment. A previous judgment in this case had been set aside by the Court of Appeal for procedural reasons.
AH is a 56-year-old woman who is an inpatient at a Cambridge Hospital was admitted to the hospital in December 2020 on an emergency basis with severe Covid-19 symptoms. She was subsequently placed on ventilation and suffered severe neurological complications. A previous hearing and judgment from Hayden J had found that AH lacks the capacity to provide consent and that continued ventilation would not be in AH’s best interests. That judgment was set aside on appeal as the judge had made a personal visit to see AH that was procedurally flawed and the case was remitted back for reconsideration.
On reviewing updated statements and evidence from the medical professionals involved and the AH’s family opposing the application, Theis J concludes at  that:
“Having considered the evidence as a whole and weighed the respective benefits and burdens of continuing treatment, including carefully weighing in the balance the strong presumption that it is in AH's best interest to stay alive, which would accord with her religious beliefs and is something her family strongly wish to happen, I have reached the conclusion that the very real burdens in the particular circumstances AH is in, with the prospect of no change and more probably a continued deterioration which may last many months of treatment, with the risk of an infection and dying away from her family, outweigh those very considerable benefits. If she is going to die her wishes are more likely to be that she would wish to do so with her family present.”
Read the judgment on Bailii
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