STOP Trauma Training with animals

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Mr. Richard J. Durbin
230 South Dearborn Street # 3892
Chicago, IL 60604

November 9, 2016

Dear Mr. Durbin,
Thank you for contacting me regarding the use of animals for trauma training by the U.S Department of Defense, and the Battlefield Excellence through Superior Training (BEST) Practices Act (S.587). I appreciate your response.

I understand that the BEST Act requires the Defense Department to use only human-based methods for training members of the Armed Forces to treat severe combat injuries. Animal rights activists, people like me, and scientists who study and develop better ways to train the military, have come up with multiple ways to train military personnel better than the outdated way of using live animals. We try to bring this issue to the attention of politicians who can make a difference, and, ultimately, give the military the best training they can get.

Since animals do not have the same anatomy as a human, it makes it hard to get in-depth training. Also, there is difficulty supplying and managing enough animals for each trainee to get adequate experience. These reasons alone show why simulation training should not be over looked. Simulation training is not only cost efficient, but trains soldiers with repetition; they can do the operation over and over again to prepare for any situation. A study at Rocky Vista University College in Parker Colorado showed that simulation training leaves trainees, “skilled and better prepared.” They can also have comrades train in any type of situation or environment to get as close to battlefield situations as possible. This will result in the best training they can get, like you mentioned in the email I received.

There are multiple types of simulators. Some are worn by an actual human that mimics the anatomy of the human body, and some can be operated on a person that just got shot and is lying down. After doing replicated scenarios from past battlefield experiences, they can then redo this test over and over again until the trainee feels comfortable with the training. This can save countless lives on the battlefield. I have references at the end of this letter on everything I went over; including the different types of revolutionary simulators that only get better with time.

Dr. William Morris, a retired Army doctor stated, “Simulators are better than animal training. Simulators can mimic many different types of problems and you can take them out in actual situations that might occur in combat.” I agree with this experienced military doctor, especially after I researched both live animal training and simulation training. This really opened my eyes on why simulators are better.

I know everyone is fighting to get ahead of the “enemy,” so it is essential for our men and woman to have the best training possible. At the same time, using live animals is not just outdated, it is not necessary when there is proof of better alternatives that will ensure our men and women have the best training there is. Let’s give that to them from the concerned men and woman in our country who care deeply about finding better alternatives for training our Armed Forces.
Thank you again for responding to my concerns. I hope you can understand our need for using better training alternatives, especially when our country depends on it.

Sincerely,


U.S Concerned Citizens

References:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TraumaMan

http://www.worldstarhiphop.com/videos/video.php?v=wshhWwU9JS7hPaV7IpP8

Block, EF; Lottenberg, L; Flint, L; Jakobsent, J; Liebnitzky, D (July 2002). "Use of a human patient simulator for the advanced trauma life support course.". American Surgeon.

Scerbo, Mark W.; Weireter, Jr., Leonard J.; Bliss, James P.; Schmidt, Elizabeth A.; Hanner, Hope (Aug 16, 2004). "An Examination of Surgical Skill Performance under Combat Conditions Using a Mannequin-Based Simulator in a Virtual Environment.". RTO-MP-HFM-109.

Scerbo, Mark W.; Weireter, Jr., Leonard J.; Bliss, James P.; Schmidt, Elizabeth A.; Hanner, Hope (Aug 16, 2004). "An Examination of Surgical Skill Performance under Combat Conditions Using a Mannequin-Based Simulator in a Virtual Environment.". RTO-MP-HFM-109.

Ali, Jameel; Sorvari, Anne; Pandya, Anand (Aug 27, 2012). "Teaching Emergency Surgical Skills for Trauma Resuscitation-Mechanical Simulator versus Animal Model.". ISRN Emergency Medicine. 2012.

Balcombe, Jonathan (2004). "Medical Training Using Simulation: Toward Fewer Animals and Safer Patients.". Alternative Laboratory Animals. 32(S1).

Simulab Corporation web site



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