Ask the University of Washington to End the Use of Ferrets in its Pediatrics Residency Program

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Originally Posted: 14 Feb 2011

Ask the University of Washington to End the Use of Ferrets in its Pediatrics Residency Program

FROM  Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM)

ACTION

Tell University of Washington School of Medicine dean Paul G. Ramsey, M.D., to replace the use of ferrets in the school’s pediatrics residency program with validated human-based training methods.

Sign an online petition

And/Or make direct contact:

Dean Paul G. Ramsey, M.D.
University of Washington School of Medicine
1959 N.E. Pacific Street
Seattle, WA 98195
phone (206) 543-7718
fax (206) 685-8767

INFORMATION / TALKING POINTS

We have provided text for you, but if you decide to write your own message, please be polite and encouraging. Here are some talking points:

  • Please replace the use of animals in UW’s pediatrics residency.
  • Anatomical and physiological differences between ferrets and humans render this type of training suboptimal.
  • UW is part of a shrinking minority of pediatrics residencies (less than 15 percent) that still use live animals for training.
  • High-fidelity simulators such as Laerdal’s SimNewB and Gaumard’s Premie HAL accurately replicate the airway of a premature newborn and allow for data collection.
  • UW already has a state-of-the-art simulation center that can easily provide nonanimal training methods.

I am writing to ask that you immediately end the use of ferrets in the University of Washington (UW) pediatrics residency program. The use of live animals for this purpose is cruel and outdated. More than 85 percent of pediatrics residency programs in the United States use nonanimal methods for this type of training.

UW already has a state-of-the-art simulation center that can easily provide nonanimal training methods, so there is no justification for the continued use of live ferrets. Further, despite claims to the contrary, medical simulators--such as the Premie HAL from Gaumard--that can replicate the airway of a premature newborn do exist. Please end this cruel and unnecessary practice immediately.


Thank you for everything you do for animals!