Charlie Gard parents upset by 'backlash' over Great Ormond Street death threats

Charlie Gard's parents

AFPCharlie Gard's parents head to court

Protesters who want critically ill British baby Charlie Gard to receive an experimental medical treatment gathered for a rally and prayer vigil Sunday, while hospital officials say emotions are running so high in the heart-breaking case they have received death threats. Thousands of abusive messages have been sent to doctors and nurses whose life's work is to care for sick children.

In a statement, she said numerous messages were menacing, including death threats, and that the hospital was in close contact with the police.

Charlie has a rare genetic condition and suffers from brain damage.

Connie Yates and Chris Gard, Charlie's parents, have raised roughly $1.8 million by way of crowdfunding to bring Charlie to the United States for experimental treatment for his disease.

"Great Ormond Street Hospital is in close contact with the Metropolitan police and we will do everything possible to hold to account anybody who involved in this kind of deplorable behaviour". But the parents are still holding on hope that their child's life could still be improved by an experimental treatment in US.

However, a hearing at the High Court has been scheduled to discuss fresh evidence from two global hospitals about nucleoside therapy.

GOSH said yesterday that the high-profile case had seen some of its staff receiving death threats.

He is at the centre of an intense legal battle between his parents and the hospital.

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A spokesperson for Charlie's parents said they do not condone abusive or threatening behaviour to GOSH staff.

MacLeod said families visiting other ill children have also been "harassed and discomforted" on the grounds of the hospital.

Dr Hirano has examined Charlie and discussed his case while visiting Great Ormond Street on Monday and Tuesday.

Mary MacLeod, Chairman of Great Ormond Street Hospital said: "In recent weeks the GOSH community has been subjected to a shocking and disgraceful tide of hostility and disturbance".

In response, Miss Yates today told the Daily Mail: "We are extremely upset by the backlash we've received after Great Ormond Street Hospital put out their statement last night".

Sir Keir Starmer, Labour MP for the area, said it was "understandable that people feel very strongly about the case" but the abuse of staff was "totally unacceptable".

American specialist, Michio Hirano, a professor of neurology at Columbia University Medical Centre in NY, travelled to London this week to examine Charlie for the first time and discuss the case with Great Ormond Street doctors.

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