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Updated on: Friday, December 10, 2021, 04:24 PM IST

Stop animal use in PG Medical Courses, urge Doctors

More than 60 medical doctors have proposed a written letter to National Medical Commission seeking an amendment to the regulations to remove the mandate to use animals.
Animal cruelty |

Animal cruelty |

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More than 60 medical doctors have proposed a written letter to National Medical Commission seeking an amendment to the regulations to remove the mandate to use animalsMore than 60 medical doctors have proposed a written letter to National Medical Commission seeking an amendment to the regulations to remove the mandate to use animals. The amendment should ensure that animals are replaced by more effective, human-relevant techniques in PG courses.

The letter comes in response to the draft Postgraduate (PG) Medical Education Regulations 2021, released by the National Medical Commission (NMC), which mandates the use of animals in teaching and training PG pharmacology and physiology courses.

"It is unnecessary to use animals for routine teaching and training of PG pharmacology and physiology students. Medical students - and India - would benefit more if the students developed practical skills using human-relevant research techniques and gained experience in clinical aspects like epidemiological surveys, clinical postings, case-based learning, and patient centric teaching", said doctors in their appeal.

"If we fail to train PG students to use the latest technology or to equip them with knowledge relevant to their future careers, whether in industry or academia, they will miss the emerging animal-free trends and employment opportunities," writes Dr. Nikita Goel with the other doctors in the letter.

PETA India has also written to the NMC and the PGMEB, stating that various Indian medical school studies have found that non-animal alternatives are beneficial in satisfying learning objectives.

"This proposed mandate to use animals for teaching and training is out of step with modern science and betrays the animal-friendly values of today's students," says PETA India Science Policy Advisor Dr. Ankita Pandey.

She added that the medical colleges like All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Raipur; Government Medical College, Srinagar; NHL Municipal Medical College; and Tezpur Medical College, Assam, don't use animals for training PG students and instead use computer-based methods or other human-relevant approaches.

According to experts, these methods facilitate repeatability of the experiment, improve students' comprehension of experimental concepts, enhance their retention capacity, and bypass many other issues encountered when experimenting on animals.

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Published on: Friday, December 10, 2021, 04:24 PM IST
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