Nation: A Battle over Cancer Care

Should state or parents decide?

On a Pacific beach near Tijuana, Mexico, Chad Green, a frail but lively three-year-old American boy, was happily digging into the sand last week and laughing at squirrels scampering near by, quite unaware that he is the subject of a dramatic medical and legal controversy. Chad is suffering from leukemia, and an argument is raging over who has the right to decide how he should be treated: his parents, Gerald and Diana Green, or state officials in Massachusetts responding to the advice of doctors.

A blond child with a winning smile, Chad began chemotherapy at the University of...

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