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Florida judge orders three-year-old boy with leukemia to resume chemo against parents’ wishes – National



Florida judge orders three year old boy with leukemia to resume chemo against parents’ wishes National


A Florida judge ruled Wednesday that three-year-old Noah McAdams, who was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) in April, must complete the first phase of chemotherapy treatment against the wishes of his parents.

His parents, Taylor Bland-Ball and Joshua McAdams, had asked the court to allow them to forego chemotherapy in favour of alternative remedies, such as medical cannabis, vitamins and diet treatments. The judge has permitted Bland-Ball and McAdams to continue with alternative treatment methods alongside chemotherapy.

Doctor talks about the difficulty of patients refusing treatment

Under Florida law, a court can make medical decisions for a minor if they are deemed to be a victim of medical neglect.

The Tampa Bay Times reports that Hillsborough County Circuit Judge Caroline Tesche Arkin ruled Wednesday that Noah McAdams must immediately resume the first phase of chemotherapy to treat his leukemia.

Noah was originally prescribed three phases of chemotherapy treatment after being diagnosed with ALL on April 4.

When his parents failed to show up for a scheduled chemotherapy appointment, Florida authorities issued an endangered child alert. The family was tracked down in Kentucky and the boy was returned to Tampa.

The judge will decide whether the boy must continue with the next two phases of treatment after bone marrow testing is completed. The family’s attorney Mike Minardi told CNN that the first phase of Noah’s treatment was expected to resume on May 9.

“We’re just happy the child gets to use alternative treatment, at a minimum to combat side effects of chemotherapy and at a maximum help cure the leukemia in his body,” Minardi told CNN.

Noah is currently in the custody of his maternal grandparents.

Ontario girl Makayla Sault, who refused chemo in favour of traditional medicine, dies

In a Facebook video posted by Bland-Ball and McAdams, they told viewers that their son has been traumatized by this experience.

“We saw him yesterday. He was pale, terrified, wouldn’t even speak, wouldn’t even walk,” she said. “And he’s just absolutely traumatized anytime a doctor gets near him,” said the boy’s mother.

The parents also said in the video that they didn’t view their actions as denying treatment, but rather, “looking for a better treatment that has less side effects and less issues.”

According to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, 90 per cent of lymphoblastic leukemia patients can be cured, and 98 per cent of children diagnosed with the disease will go into remission within weeks after starting treatment.

The research hospital also states that ALL is the most common type of childhood cancer and occurs most often in children aged three to five.

Patients refusing chemotherapy and other proven cancer treatments has been a problem in Canada as well. In 2014, 11-year-old Makayla Sault was diagnosed with the same form of leukemia as Noah. She passed away in 2015 after ceasing chemotherapy treatments.

WATCH: When people refuse cancer treatments (2015) 

After a year of treatment, Makayla made the decision to cease chemotherapy treatments in favour of Indigenous medicine after experiencing a number of harmful side effects. She had been receiving treatment at the McMaster Children’s Hospital, where she eventually decided to stop treatments.

McMaster Children’s Hospital contacted authorities to force the girl to resume her treatment, but an Ontario Court decision in the case of another First Nations girl who also refused chemo ruled that Indigenous parents are constitutionally protected in choosing traditional treatments for their children.

In 2015 Global News special report, Dr. Samir Gupta wrote that while patients refuse treatments all the time, they must be able to understand the consequences of that choice. When a minor refuses treatment or is denied treatment by their parents, the situation becomes more complicated. While parents ultimately have the right to make decisions in their child’s best interests, society also has a responsibility to protect children when their parents are being negligent, Gupta writes.

Follow-up court hearings in the case of Noah McAdams are scheduled for June 4 and June 5.

— With a file from Andrew Russell. 

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.


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Catholic Bishops react to military coup in Mali



Catholic Bishops react to military coup in Mali

Contrary to the expectations of the people, the leadership of the Episcopal Conference of Mali (CEM) has termed the Tuesday, August 18 military coup in the West African nation as “regrettable” and “a big failure for our democracy” and called for a change of mentality if the country has to put an end to coups.

In an interview with ACI Africa Wednesday, August 19, made available to RECOWACERAO NEWS AGENCY, RECONA, the President of CEM, Bishop Jonas Dembélé said that the governance challenges the country is facing can be managed through dialogue.

“The military coup that led to the ousting of President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta is regrettable because we are in a state of law and democracy. This is the second time that Mali has had a military coup as a result of the way in which the country is governed. It is a big failure for our democracy even if there were reasons for it,” Bishop Dembélé told ACI Africa.

“It is true that our country has serious challenges including bad governance, the poor management of the economy, corruption, insecurity and so on,” Bishop Dembélé said and probed, “Why is it that we Malians have not managed to engage in dialogue to be able to discuss these problems and face up to these challenges responsibly?”

“Our leaders, our people lack transparency, they hate those who speak the truth and advocate for good governance. This mentality must change for our country to move on,” the Prelate told ACI Africa August 19.

Bishop Dembélé who is a frontline member of RECOWA-CERAO urged the military officials “to ensure a return to democracy as promised but most especially ensuring the new leadership of the country put the people first and tackle the security challenges facing the nation.”

Asked about the role of the Church in the current crisis, the 57-year-old Prelate noted, “For us the Catholic Church in Mali, our role is to preach peace; our role is to preach dialogue. We shall continue in this path of dialogue for peace just like Cardinal Jean Zerbo and some religious leaders initiated.”

“In a state of law, power is not in the hands of certain individuals but to the people. The anger of our people led to this crisis, but we must work for peace and reconciliation in Mali,” Bishop Dembélé said.

He continued in recollections, “The Bishops in Mali have always issued messages before every election in our country sounding the alert and inviting the government to organize transparent elections, ensure good governance and better management of resources.”
“But it seems our messages are never taken into consideration that is why we find ourselves in this situation today,” the Local Ordinary of Kayes Diocese told ACI Africa and added, “If the opinion of the Episcopal Conference of Mali is needed to mediate in bringing back stability and peace in the country, then we are ready.”

As a way forward, the Bishop urged the people of God in Mali to “seek the path to conversion” and to accept dialogue in the spirit of truth and honesty.
“We all want change in our

country, but this change can only be possible if individually we seek the path to conversion. It is for Malians be they Muslims or Christians or members of traditional religion, to do an examination of conscience and accept personal and community conversion in order to engage in sincere dialogue,” he said.

The Malian Prelate added, “Now there is this coup d’état to demand change we really wonder where change should come from. As long as we don’t change our behavior, our mentality, we will always have a repeat of the current situation.”

On Tuesday, August 18, President Keita announced his resignation and dissolved parliament hours after mutinying soldiers detained him at gunpoint, Aljazeera reported.
“For seven years, I have with great joy and happiness tried to put this country on its feet. If today some people from the armed forces have decided to end it by their intervention, do I have a choice? I should submit to it because I do not want any blood to be shed,” President Keita said August 18 during the televised address to the nation.

Rev. Fr. George Nwachukwu

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Harris accepts VP nomination



Harris accepts VP nomination

Senator Kamala Harris formally accepted the Democratic nomination for vice president on Wednesday following a scathing speech by former President Barack Obama, who said the fate of the nation” depends entirely on the outcome of this election.”

Both Mr. Obama and Harris stressed the importance of voting, with Harris saying “we’re all in this fight together.” Harris sounded an optimistic note by highlighting her personal history and the promise of America, saying she was “so inspired by a new generation.”

“Make no mistake, the road ahead will not be not easy,” she said. “We will stumble. We may fall short. But I pledge to you that we will act boldly and deal with our challenges honestly. We will speak truths. And we will act with the same faith in you that we ask you to place in us.” She called Mr. Trump a “predator” in a speech that came after Mr. Obama issued his most forceful rebuke of his successor to date, saying Mr. Trump “hasn’t grown into the job because he can’t.”

“This president and those in power — those who benefit from keeping things the way they are — they are counting on your cynicism,” Mr. Obama said. “They know they can’t win you over with their policies. So they’re hoping to make it as hard as possible for you to vote, and to convince you that your vote doesn’t matter.

That’s how they win. That’s how they get to keep making decisions that affect your life, and the lives of the people you love. That’s how the economy will keep getting skewed to the wealthy and well-connected, how our health systems will let more people fall through the cracks. That’s how a democracy withers, until it’s no democracy at all.”

Mr. Obama and Hillary Clinton, speaking earlier in the night, both said they had hoped Mr. Trump would rise to the occasion. But they both stressed what they called his failures while in office, with Mr. Obama saying Mr. Trump has shown “no interest in treating the presidency as anything but one more reality show that he can use to get the attention he craves.”

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Mali coup leaders vow to hold elections as history repeats itself



Mali coup leaders vow to hold elections as history repeats itself

The Malian soldiers who forced President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita to resign in a coup promised early Wednesday to organize new elections after their takeover was swiftly condemned by the international community.

In a statement carried overnight on state broadcaster ORTM, the mutinous soldiers who staged Tuesday’s military coup identified themselves as the National Committee for the Salvation of the People led by Colonel Major Ismael Wagué.

“With you, standing as one, we can restore this country to its former greatness,” Wagué said, announcing that borders were closed and that a curfew was going into effect from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m

The news of Keita’s departure was met with jubilation by anti-government demonstrators in the capital, Bamako, and alarm by former colonial ruler France and other allies and foreign nations.

The U.N. Security Council scheduled a closed meeting Wednesday August 19, 2020 afternoon to discuss the unfolding situation in Mali, where the U.N. has a 15,600-strong peacekeeping mission. Keita, who was democratically elected in a 2013 landslide and re-elected five years later, still had three years left in his term.

But his popularity had plummeted, and demonstrators began taking to the streets calling for his ouster in June.

West African regional bloc ECOWAS had sent mediators to try and negotiate a unity government but those talks fell apart when it became clear that the protesters would not accept less than Keita’s resignation.

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