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Tafida Raqeeb: Brain-damaged girl can go abroad for treatment

The parents of a brain-damaged girl will be allowed to take her abroad to continue her treatment, the High Court has ruled.

Five-year-old Tafida Raqeeb has been on life support at the Royal London Hospital since suffering a traumatic brain injury in February.

Her parents have organised funding to take her to the Gaslini children’s hospital in Genoa, Italy.

But UK specialists had argued any further treatment would be futile.

Bosses at Barts Health NHS Trust, which runs the hospital in Whitechapel, had asked the judge to rule that ending Tafida’s life-support was in her best interests.

Her mother, Shelina Begum, and father, Mohammed Raqeeb, said doctors in Italy would continue to treat their daughter until she was diagnosed as brain dead.

They argued that Tafida was from a Muslim family and Islamic law said only God could take the decision to end her life.

Following the ruling, Mr Raqeeb said the couple were “thrilled by the judgement”.

Their barrister David Lock QC said the ruling was an “enormous relief” for the couple who he said now “wanted to get on with the transfer”.

Lawyers representing Barts Health NHS Trust said hospital bosses would consider appealing against the ruling.

The High Court had heard that Tafida woke her parents one morning in February complaining that she had a headache, and then had collapsed.

She was taken to hospital where doctors discovered that blood vessels in her brain were tangled and had ruptured.

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BBC News – Health

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