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Washington University, St. Louis:
Top Med School Still Hurts Cats

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Originally Posted: July 14, 2013

Washington University, St. Louis:
Top Med School Still Hurts Cats

FROM Kinship Circle


intubate catMedia and academia want this to be an animal rights vs. saving babies issue. It's not. Washington University was the last school to end animal use in PALS courses. Their reason? To maintain "consistency" with AHA protocols. If so, why did it take them years to get on board? Moreover, why doesn't the same rationale apply to intubation drills in other pediatric courses? In reality, American Heart Association, American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), and Emergency Nurses Association (ENA) — agencies that coordinate most pediatric life support courses — endorse manikin/simulator use, not animals.

Our sample letter cites scientific data to show simulations exceed animal use as instructive tools. Animal-free models are not only humane, but also impart skills to actually save babies.

Sign an online petition (copy/paste URL into your browser):

And/or better yet, make direct contact:

Robert M. Kennedy, M.D.
Professor of Pediatrics and Associate Director, Educational Affairs
Emergency Medicine
Washington University School of Medicine
Campus Box 8116
660 S. Euclid Ave.
St. Louis, MO 63110
ph: 314-454-2825, 314-454-2341, fax: 314-454-4345

F. Sessions Cole
Park J White, M.D. Prof of Pediatrics
Pediatrics Newborn Medicine
Campus Box 8116
660 S. Euclid Ave.
St. Louis, MO 63110
ph: 314-454-4826, fax: 314-454-4633
email: FCole@WUSTL.EDU Larry J. Shapiro

Exec. Vice Chancellor Medical Affairs & Dean, School of Medicine
Campus Box 8106
Washington University in St. Louis
One Brookings Drive
St. Louis, MO 63130
ph: 314-362-6827, fax: 314-367-6666

Mark Stephen Wrighton
Chancellor, Washington University in St. Louis
Campus Box 1192
One Brookings Drive
St. Louis, MO 63130
ph: 314-935-5100


"Saving Babies" By Traumatizing Cats?

6/1/13: St. Louis Children's Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine (WUSM) announce an end to cat labs for Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS), an American Heart Association (AHA) course that teaches medical trainees how to insert a tube into a child/infant's windpipe (trachea) via mouth or nose. AHA "does not require or endorse use of live animals in any of its training courses." Its PALS Course Equipment List shows simulators alone, with no reference to animals.

6/12/13: St. Louis Post Dispatch runs an op-ed piece from Drs. Kennedy and Cole of WUSM, to clarify a "misimpression" that the university has ended cat use in "intubation courses separate from PALS." They state: "We will continue to involve animals until more advanced simulators or other effective teaching tools are developed."

Does Washington University know something that 98% of U.S. pediatric residency programs do not? Nearly all such curriculums now provide animal-free intubation training. As of March 2013, just three institutions nationwide still use old-fashioned animal labs: Healthcare System (Tacoma, WA); San Antonio Uniformed Services Health Education Consortium (San Antonio, TX); and Washington University/B-JH/SLCH Consortium (St. Louis, MO).

We're dismayed that St. Louis' main daily published WUSM comments about the need to continue animal labs, based on "research elsewhere," and that "30 other schools" still intubate animals for PALS classes. WUSM spokespeople failed to cite credible scientific data to back their claims. St. Louis Post Dispatch didn't bother to verify claims or even seek a rebuttal from qualified experts who oppose animal use.

Thank you for everything you do for animals!

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