Victories for Cats and Pigs in
Maryland and Indiana Universities

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Victories for Cats and Pigs in Maryland and Indiana Universities

[Ed. Note: Read Alternatives to Animal Testing.]

From Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM)

Thanks to you and the 19,000 other PCRM supporters who signed petitions, IU will no longer use cats, or other animals, in its pediatrics residency program.

After pressing the Department of Defense for records via the Freedom of Information Act and filing a state level animal cruelty complaint PCRM learned this week that USUHS has ended animal use in ATLS courses. This follows our previous success at the school when we petitioned for the replacement of live ferrets in the pediatrics clerkship and won.

I want you to be among the first to know the good news for cats who were slated to be used to teach medical procedures at Indiana University (IU). Thanks to you and the 19,000 other PCRM supporters who signed petitions, IU will no longer use cats, or other animals, in its pediatrics residency program.

IU's use of cats required pediatrics residents to repeatedly force breathing tubes down cats' throats, causing tracheal bruising, bleeding, scarring, severe pain, and risking death. PCRM reached out to IU faculty to ask that they replace the use of cats with human-based medical simulators. After months of communication and a curriculum review by faculty and administrators IU made the right choice and deserves credit for doing so. Earlier this month, the IU residency director informed us that the school will instead use infant simulators. This switch will provide superior training for residents and their future patients.

I would also like to share with you good news for pigs slated to be used in Advanced Trauma Life Support (ATLS) training at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (UHUHS) School of Medicine in Bethesda, MD, the military medical school for the United States. For years PCRM has been working hard to end the use of animals within the curriculum at USUHS. Last year, that effort converged with our successful national campaign to replace animal use in ATLS programs when we learned that USUHS was using animals for this purpose as well—and requiring medical students to participate.

After pressing the Department of Defense for records via the Freedom of Information Act and filing a state level animal cruelty complaint PCRM learned this week that USUHS has ended animal use in ATLS courses. This follows our previous success at the school when we petitioned for the replacement of live ferrets in the pediatrics clerkship and won.

Please help us keep our momentum going to save animals used in medical education. We have active campaigns focusing on University of Tennessee College of Medicine in Chattanooga, University of Washington, and Tulane University, among others. We are currently trying to raise $2,100 for some high profile activities to support our important work. A gift of $20 or more will really help us continue our string of success and get you a subscription to our quarterly magazine Good Medicine.