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Parents fight TX hospital to keep 9-year-old daughter on life support

Parents fight TX hospital to keep 9-year-old daughter on life support
Posted at 3:55 AM, Oct 02, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-02 00:40:57-04

FORT WORTH, TX (KTVT/CNN) - The parents of a 9-year-old who failed a brain activity test at a Texas hospital believe the little girl can still recover, so they are fighting hospital policy to keep her on a ventilator.

Doctors at Cook Children’s Medical Center have told the parents of 9-year-old Payton Summons that their daughter has no brain activity and is not breathing by herself, but her heart is still beating on its own.

“Your heart is still beating … There’s still life in there,” said Payton’s mother, Tiffany Hofstetter. “We know our kid. She’s never given up on anything; it didn’t matter what it was. Her heart is beating.”

Hospital policy is to check brain activity again within 12 hours of the first test. If there isn’t any activity, the 9-year-old can be declared dead and taken off her ventilator.

The hospital initially put off the second test for four days in an effort to help the family understand the situation and grieve.

However, the family’s attorney, Justin Moore, says Payton’s parents don’t believe their daughter is brain dead and feel she can still recover.

The parents filed a restraining order against the hospital, and a judge has temporarily forbidden doctors from running that second test.

“She’s strong. They thought she wasn’t even going to make it to the weekend, and here we are Monday, and she made it,” Hofstetter said.

Still, the hospital says Payton must be moved to another facility. It granted time to her parents to find a facility willing to care for the 9-year-old, but they haven’t been successful so far.

“We respect the effort of Payton’s family to do what they believe is best for their child. We experience this kind of parental passion every day and always work alongside the parents,” said the hospital in a statement.

More than a week has passed since Payton was taken to the hospital after going into cardiac arrest. While reviving her, doctors discovered a large tumor in the girl’s chest.

Copyright 2018 KTVT via CNN. All rights reserved.