Sometimes it takes long public campaigns to convince huge universities to replace animals in medical training courses. But sometimes it only requires dialogue, and I am excited to tell you about one such example. The University of British Columbia (UBC) just held its first animal-free Essential Surgical Skills Course! Until this year, the course, which is designed for rural family medicine physicians, subjected live pigs to a dozen invasive procedures.
In January, we approached the course directors at UBC, who replied that they were open to replacing animals. We supplied them with detailed information on which simulators are appropriate for the procedures they teach. Then, at the end of May, the course went off without a hitch. In fact, the feedback from trainees was positive!
We are hugely grateful to the UBC course directors for being open to this change and allowing us to assist. Unfortunately, many other medical centers refuse to modernize their curricula, and that is where you can help! Please tell Brown University to replace animals in its emergency medicine program.
Thank you for supporting our work!
Ryan Merkley – Director of Research Advocacy
Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine
5100 Wisconsin Ave., N.W., Suite 400
Washington, D.C. 20016