Aurora Sinai Medical Center Swaps Live Animals for Simulators in OB/GYN Training, After PETA Plea

For Immediate Release:
July 29, 2021

Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382

Milwaukee – In a win-win situation for patients and pigs, obstetrics and gynecology (OB/GYN) medical residents at Aurora Sinai Medical Center will no longer practice surgical procedures on live animals, following discussions with PETA.

In response to a March survey from PETA and a Utah physician regarding animal use in OB/GYN residency programs accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education in the U.S. and Canada, Aurora Sinai Medical Center confirmed that it has been using three live pigs annually for training 13 medical residents in an assortment of reproductive surgical procedures.

After approximately four months of discussions with PETA, the hospital announced its transition to human simulation–based OB/GYN residency training, writing to PETA, “We will no longer be utilizing live animals. Decision is in effect now.”

“Aurora Sinai Medical Center’s OB/GYN residents deserve the best medical education possible, and that means human-relevant simulation models,” says PETA Vice President Shalin Gala. “PETA is ready to help medical centers across the country switch to modern, animal-free options that spare animals’ lives and allow trainees to practice invasive procedures until they’re confident and adept.”

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on” and which opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview—notes that studies show that doctors who learn lifesaving surgical skills on human simulators are more proficient than those who use animals. In 2016, PETA donated an advanced virtual reality surgical system to Rush University Medical Center in Chicago to replace its use of live pigs in OB/GYN residency training.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind