For Immediate Release:
March 9, 2023
Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382
Portland, Ore. – PETA is urging Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) to stop mutilating live pigs in its obstetrics and gynecology (OB/GYN) physician training program and instead switch to modern, human-relevant training methods.
In a letter to Amy Stenson, director of OHSU’s OB/GYN residency program, PETA urges the school to join the majority of similar programs in the U.S., which have abandoned cruel and inferior animal-based research models.
At least 64 of the school’s OG/BYN residents cut into up to 48 live female pigs, dissected their organs, and performed other invasive surgeries on them, according to records obtained by PETA. All the pigs were later killed.
While OHSU’s pig body count continues to rise, the majority of OB/GYN residency programs across the country instead use animal-free methods, such as in vitro systems, computer simulations, and mathematical models.
“OHSU is still using female pigs as human stand-ins, slicing them open and killing them,” says PETA Vice President Shalin Gala. “PETA is calling on the school to spare pigs’ lives and improve women’s health by embracing superior, non-animal technology for OB/GYN physician residency training.”
PETA and an OB/GYN physician previously informed Stenson in an April 2022 letter that federal provisions require the replacement of animal use when possible. That letter and follow-up communication went unacknowledged.
Pigs cannot accurately mimic human anatomy. Familiarity with human anatomical structures is crucial in medicine, and physicians must often make lifesaving decisions within seconds. Animal-free methods for OB/GYN training are cost-effective, simulate real medical situations, and provide students with vital opportunities to repeat procedures until they’re proficient.
PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information on PETA’s investigative newsgathering and reporting, please visit PETA.org, listen to The PETA Podcast, or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.