High-Tech Surgical Simulators End Deadly Animal Labs in Pakistan

For Immediate Release:
9 October 2015

Benazir Suraiya; [email protected]
Dr Chaitanya Koduri; [email protected]

PETA US Expands Successful Rs 1 Billion Donation Program That Saves Animals, Improves Medical Training

Karachi – A donation from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) US of high-tech simulators worth over Rs 1 billion is modernising physician-training programs in Pakistan and sparing thousands of dogs, pigs, goats and other animals in Europe, the Middle East and other parts of Asia the agony of being cut open and killed. In Pakistan, the simulators have been received by Professor Zafar Ullah Chaudhry, president of the College of Physicians and Surgeons Pakistan, who agreed not to use any animals for the popular American College of Surgeons–sponsored Advanced Trauma Life Support (ATLS) course, which previously used dogs and goats.

Through a landmark partnership with US-based medical simulation manufacturer Simulab – and with the support of PETA Germany and the McGrath Family Foundation and shipping donations from DHL and Cathay Pacific airlines – PETA US has donated 40 state-of-the-art TraumaMan surgical simulators to national ATLS surgical training programs in China, Cyprus, Greece, Indonesia, the Philippines, and the United Arab Emirates. These countries will now use TraumaMan – which replicates a breathing, bleeding human torso, complete with realistic layers of skin and tissue, ribs and internal organs – instead of cutting into animals to train thousands of doctors each year to perform lifesaving surgical procedures on victims of traumatic injuries.

“Doctors everywhere deserve the best, most advanced lifesaving trauma training available – and that means using advanced simulators, not killing and mutilating animals”, says PETA US Director of Laboratory Investigations Justin Goodman. “The donation will equip physicians with the tools that they need to save human lives while sparing the lives of thousands of animals.”

Virtually all ATLS courses in the US, Canada and other Western nations use TraumaMan, but until now, ATLS programs with limited budgets in other countries have required trainees to cut crude holes into the chests, throats, abdomens and limbs of thousands of live dogs, goats, pigs and sheep each year. The donated TraumaMan systems are more portable, are less costly and are reusable, unlike animal-based exercises, and studies show that doctors who learn lifesaving surgical skills on TraumaMan are more proficient than those who cut into animals, largely because TraumaMan actually mimics human anatomy.

Last year, PETA US donated 67 TraumaMan simulators worth over Rs 23.7 billion to nine countries – Bolivia, Costa Rica, Egypt, Iran, Jordan, Mexico, Mongolia, Panama and Trinidad and Tobago – in the first round of this successful effort to modernise ATLS training. More than 25 per cent of nations teaching this course have now ended animal use as a result of PETA US’ program, which is the group’s largest contribution to promote the use of non-animal scientific methods to date.

For more information about alternatives to animal testing, please visit PETAIndia.com.