Couple with gravely ill daughter lose fight over where she will end her life

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Couple with gravely ill daughter lose fight over where she will end her life

Chaya and Abraham Fixsler told a judge they wanted life-support treatment to be withdrawn from daughter Alta, two, at home, which was rejected

Alta Fixsler  (Irwin Mitchell/PA Media)
Alta Fixsler (Irwin Mitchell/PA Media)

A Jewish couple who failed to persuade a High Court judge to allow them to move their seriously ill daughter from England to a hospital in Israel have lost a fight over where the youngster should end her life.

Chaya and Abraham Fixsler told a judge they wanted life-support treatment to be withdrawn from daughter Alta, two, at home.

Hospital bosses said treatment should be withdrawn in hospital or at a hospice.

Mr Justice MacDonald has ruled that treatment should be withdrawn in a hospice.

The judge, who is based in London, has considered the case at hearings in the Family Division of the High Court.

Bosses at Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust have responsibility for Alta’s care and asked for decisions about what was in her best interests.

In May 2021, the judge ruled that life-support treatment should end, and granted an application by hospital bosses, and said it was in Alta’s best interests for her to move to a palliative care regime.

He also concluded that a move to Israel was not in her best interests.

Mr Justice MacDonald outlined his decision about where Alta should end her life in a written ruling published on Wednesday following a further, recent hearing.

The judge said he was satisfied that it was in Alta’s best interests for the withdrawal of life-sustaining treatment to take place at a children’s hospice.

He added: “I am satisfied that this option best accommodates Alta’s welfare need for specialist care at the end of her life under a reliable, safe and sustainable system of high calibre care protected from disruption, whilst allowing, in so far as possible and consistent with Alta’s best interests, the family and the community to perform the sacred religious obligations of the Orthodox Jewish faith.”

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