USDA Cites Harvard as Primate Found Dead in Cagewasher; Watchdog Group Demands Inspection Tour of Primate Center

Press Release
From Stop Animal Exploitation NOW!
S. A. E. N.
"Exposing the truth to wipe out animal experimentation"


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, August 2, 2010
Contact: Michael Budkie, SAEN, 513-703-9865 (cell)
Attn: News Desk

USDA Cites Harvard as Primate Found Dead in Cagewasher; Watchdog Group Demands Inspection Tour of Primate Center

BOSTON/SOUTHBOROUGH, MA – Recently obtained federal reports reveal major violations of the Animal Welfare Act within the labs of Harvard Medical School/New England Primate Research Center, according to the national research watchdog group SAEN. Harvard received five federal citations in an inspection during June of 2010.

On June 29, 2010, Harvard received five federal citations from the United States Department of Agriculture for violating the Animal Welfare Act. The violations involved unqualified personnel inadequate veterinary care, and inadequate cleaning/sanitation procedures.

A shocking incident which took place on June 9, 2010, is documented in the inspection reports. On this day a dead non-human primate was discovered in a cage that had just been sterilized in a cage washing system.

According to the USDA document, post-mortem findings indicate that the animal may have been dead before being sent through the cage casher. However, the negligence which allowed the death to go unnoticed is astounding.

“Negligence at Harvard allowed the death of a primate to go entirely unnoticed,” said Michael A. Budkie, A.H.T., Executive Director, SAEN. “This facility should face serious consequences for this incident of obvious incompetence.”

In a letter to Dr. Jeffrey Flier, Budkie has demanded a tour of the primate center (to be accompanied by Boston area news media) as well as access to health records for all primates at the facility.

“It is clear that the Harvard officials who are responsible for supervising animal research are not doing their jobs,” said Budkie. “What else is going on at Harvard that we don’t know about?”

According to SAEN the Harvard incident is the latest part of a national pattern of negligent animal deaths in laboratories. Thirty-four labs have now killed over 130 animals within the last 1 - 2 years, including recent incidents of negligence at Boston’s Brigham & Women’s Hospital.

The USDA inspection reports are available upon request from SAEN.

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See Also:
Harvard Medical School
Dead monkey raises alarms Primate lab gets USDA citation - Media Coverage
Feds may probe Southborough primate center after animal's death - Media Coverage
2 Aug 2010 - USDA Cites Harvard as Primate Found Dead in Cagewasher; Watchdog Group Demands Inspection Tour of Primate Center - Press Release

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