Parents of sick infant brace for another court fight

Parents of Charlie Gard, Connie Yates and Chris Gard pose for the media ahead of delivering a petition with more than 350,000 signatures to Great Ormond Street Hospital in London, Sunday, July 9, 2017. Britain's justice secretary says the government won't play a role in deciding the medical treatment of a terminally ill baby whose parents want to take him to the U.S. for experimental treatment. David Lidington says that the decision on 11-month-old Charlie Gard will be made by judges acting "independent and dispassionately" based on the facts of the complicated case. (Dominic Lipinski/PA via AP)
The parents of critically ill baby Charlie Gard, Connie Yates and Chris Gard arrive at the Royal Courts of Justice in London. Thursday July 13, 2017. The parents Charlie Gard who has a rare disease returned to a court in London on Thursday, hoping for a fresh analysis of their wish to take the critically ill child to the United States for medical treatment. (Jonathan Brady/PA via AP)
This is an undated photo of sick baby Charlie Gard provided by his family, taken at Great Ormond Street Hospital in London. A British court will assess new evidence Monday July 10, 2017, in the case of 11-month-old Charlie Gard as his mother pleaded with judges to allow the terminally ill infant to receive experimental treatment for his rare genetic disease, mitochondrial depletion syndrome. (Family of Charlie Gard via AP)
The parents of critically ill baby Charlie Gard, Connie Yates and Chris Gard arrive at the Royal Courts of Justice in London. Thursday July 13, 2017. The parents Charlie Gard who has a rare disease returned to a court in London on Thursday, hoping for a fresh analysis of their wish to take the critically ill child to the United States for medical treatment. (Jonathan Brady/PA via AP)

LONDON — The parents of a baby with a rare disease returned to a court in London on Thursday, hoping for a fresh analysis of their wish to take the critically-ill child to the United States for medical treatment.

Charlie Gard's parents disagree with Britain's most famous children's hospital on how best to care for the 11-month-old with a rare genetic condition.

Great Ormond Street Hospital argues experimental treatment in America won't help and may cause the child to suffer. The hospital believes his life support systems should be turned off.

The parents want to try — but it isn't up to them.

Parents in Britain do not have the absolute right to make decisions for their children and it is normal for courts to intervene when parents and doctors disagree on the treatment of people unable to speak for themselves. The rights of the child take primacy, with the courts weighing issues such as whether a child is suffering and how much benefit a proposed treatment might produce.

"We are continuing to spend every moment, working around the clock to save our dear baby Charlie," the parents said in a statement before the hearing. "We've been requesting this specialized treatment since November, and never asked the hospital, courts or anyone for anything - except for the permission to go."

Judge Nicholas Francis, who ruled in favor of doctors in April, says he will consider any new evidence Thursday.

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