Eight-month-old Indi Gregory has passed away after her parents unsuccessfully fought a lengthy legal battle to keep her on life support. Indi suffered from an incurable mitochondrial disease and doctors claimed further treatment was futile and caused her pain. However, her parents disagreed and launched multiple legal efforts to prolong her life before she died early Monday morning.
Mitochondrial Disease Took Baby Indi’s Life
Indi Gregory was born with mitochondrial disease, which prevents cells from producing enough energy for the body to function properly. The NHS describes mitochondrial disease as incurable.
The young girl had been receiving life support at Queen’s Medical Centre (QMC) in Nottingham to sustain her through the terminal illness. However, medical staff said Indi was dying and the life support treatment only extended her suffering.
Her parents, Claire Staniforth and Dean Gregory of Ilkeston, Derbyshire, fiercely disputed this medical opinion. They believed their daughter could live longer with continued life support care.
Legal Battles to Keep Indi Alive
Over months of legal wrangling, Indi’s parents tried desperately to find ways to maintain her life support treatment. Assisted by the Christian Legal Centre, the couple launched cases in British and European courts.
They first argued in the High Court that Indi should remain on life support at home instead of in the hospital. After losing this bid, the parents appealed to the Court of Appeal but were denied again on Friday.
The family also unsuccessfully petitioned the European Court of Human Rights to intervene in Indi’s case. Additionally, they sought to have the infant transferred to a hospital in Rome willing to provide further care, but British courts blocked this move.
Indi’s Parents Lash Out After Her Death
After exhausting their legal options, Indi’s parents had to relinquish their fight to extend her life. She was moved to a hospise on Saturday and taken off life support early Monday morning.
In an emotional statement after Indi’s passing, her father Dean Gregory accused the NHS and courts of not only ending her life but also denying her a dignified death at home. Indi’s mother Claire Staniforth was with the baby for her final moments.
The parents said they knew Indi was special from the day she was born eight months earlier. They now must grapple with the death of their beloved daughter after a strenuous months-long legal battle.
Hospital Expresses Condolences to Family
Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust, which oversees QMC, expressed their condolences to Indi’s family. A spokesperson acknowledged this had been an incredibly challenging journey for all involved.
While Indi’s parents clearly feel let down by the legal system and medical establishment, the hospital showed sensitivity in responding to the parents’ grief and anger. Indi’s devastating case highlights how divisive end-of-life disputes can become when families and doctors disagree.