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3-Year-Old Taken From Parents After They Stop His Chemo

Authorities say boy's life is in danger; family says chemo is too 'brutal'
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted May 2, 2019 11:05 AM CDT
Stock photo.   (Getty Images/kdshutterman)

(Newser) – Joshua McAdams and Taylor Bland-Ball's 3-year-old son, Noah, has leukemia. But his parents don't want him to get chemotherapy, and they've lost custody of him as a result. "We want him to be treated with something that has less side effects," Bland-Ball tells WFLA. "Chemotherapy is so brutal on a body." After the Florida couple left Hillsborough County with Noah Monday, authorities launched an urgent search for the boy, saying his parents had failed to bring him to a "medically necessary hospital procedure" the week prior and that he was in need of "lifesaving medical care." The family was found in Kentucky within hours, and Noah was taken away from his parents; authorities say he is "now being medically treated," per the Washington Post. His parents are fighting to get him back, with a custody hearing set for Friday.

According to his mom, who posts frequently on Facebook about the case, two rounds of chemo were done, Noah was declared cancer-free less than two weeks after he was diagnosed, and the family planned to follow up with alternative treatments, including vitamins and herbs. In a post Tuesday, Bland-Ball said, "His blood results from yesterday showed a healthier boy than ever, which we knew. We took him in for treatment when it was needed and when we asked for an opportunity for a second opinion, we were denied that right to do so." She added Thursday, "There are so many FDA Approved treatment options that are not chemo that we are open to." But a doctor tells the Tampa Bay Times research has shown if chemo is stopped early, this type of cancer is likely to return. A Wednesday custody hearing was delayed because the sheriff's office and Guardian ad Litem Program don't want the media there; McAdams and Bland-Ball say they welcome it. (A giant bell will ring at this hospital whenever a child finishes chemo.)

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