Judge sides with hospital that forced chemotherapy for Amish girl

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An appeals court has sided with a hospital that wants to force a 10-year-old Amish girl to resume chemotherapy.

Sarah Hershberger’s parents said they stopped the treatments at Sarah’s request and after “a great deal of prayer.”

CBS News reports that initially, a county judge in Ohio blocked Akron Children’s Hospital’s attempt to give an attorney and registered nurse limited guardianship over Sarah Hershberger – along with the power to make medical decisions for her.

The hospital believes Sarah’s leukemia is treatable and that she’ll die without chemo.

The new appeals ruling issued Tuesday said the judge failed to consider the girl’s best interest on the issue of appointing a guardian. It also disagreed with the judge’s initial decision that guardianship could be applied only if the child’s parents were found unfit.

Andy Hershberger, the girl’s father, said they stopped a second round of chemotherapy in June because it was making the girl extremely sick.

“It put her down for two days. She was not like her normal self,” he said. “We just thought we cannot do this to her.”

The family, members of an Amish community, shuns “many facets of modern life and is deeply religious.”