An international survey of medical ethics curricula in Asia.
SETTING: Medical ethics education has become common, and the integrated ethics curriculum has been recommended in Western countries. It should be questioned whether there is one, universal method of teaching ethics applicable worldwide to medical schools, especially those in non-Western developing countries. OBJECTIVE: To characterise the medical ethics curricula at Asian medical schools. DESIGN: Mailed survey of 206 medical schools in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea, Mongolia, Philippines, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Australia and New Zealand. PARTICIPANTS: A total of 100 medical schools responded, a response rate of 49%, ranging from 23%-100% by country. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: The degree of integration of the ethics programme into the formal medical curriculum was measured by lecture time; whether compulsory or elective; whether separate courses or unit of other courses; number of courses; schedule; total length, and diversity of teachers' specialties. RESULTS: A total of 89 medical schools (89%) reported offering some courses in which ethical topics were taught. Separate medical ethics courses were mostly offered in all countries, and the structure of vertical integration was divided into four patterns. Most deans reported that physicians' obligations and patients' rights were the most important topics for their students. However, the evaluation was diverse for more concrete topics. CONCLUSION: Offering formal medical ethics education is a widespread feature of medical curricula throughout the study area. However, the kinds of programmes, especially with regard to integration into clinical teaching, were greatly diverse. (+info)
A reply to Joseph Bernstein.
Dr. Bernstein suggests that anti-vivisectionists should be able to fill in a directive requesting that they receive no medical treatment developed through work on animals. It is replied that this would only be reasonable if research not using animals had long been funded as adequately and its results were currently available. (+info)
Methods in vascular infusion biotechnology in research with rodents.
Infusion of experimental compounds into the vascular system of rodents and the need to collect blood and other biological fluids from small animals comprise an area of emerging importance to biomedical research and drug discovery and development. The advances in the development of transgenic rodents coupled with technical progress in the manufacture and commercial availability of various catheters, swivels, tethers, infusion pumps, and sample collection systems that are described have enabled biomedical scientists to miniaturize vascular infusion and sample collection systems previously used in animal species larger than the rat or mouse. Use of these advanced, miniature vascular infusion systems in rodents is possible only when careful planning of experimental design, expert surgical technique, adequate postoperative care, and fundamental animal welfare considerations are meticulously taken into consideration. Use of these vascular infusion systems in rodents promotes animal welfare and scientific progress through the reduction and refinement of animal models. (+info)
Animal experimentation in sciences: sadistic nonsense or indispensable necessity?
The history of biomedical research clearly shows that, with exception of a very few, scientific findings could be realised only with the help of animal experiments. Unfortunately, in the past the life of animals was treated negligently and, at times, in fact criminally. Only the researchers' willingness to apply ethical principles toward laboratory animals could create a climate in which research is opening up to constructive, active animal protection and is ready to co-operate through the implementations of such programmes as the 3R-principle into daily practice. Using a number of examples, the article at hand tries to show that the dimensions concerning animal protection is very old indeed and that only a change of consciousness by the public and in research has created a situation in which a gentler treatment of life and life conditions of laboratory animals could be realised. A further development of "constructive" animal protection within the industrialised nations is only possible with this back ground. Without such a development, biomedical research is bound for deficits in one way or another. It will be loosing it's medical and economical opportunities and with it, it's meaning for man. (+info)
Use of animals in research: a science--society controversy? The American perspective: animal welfare issues.
My paper will focus on those events happening within the United States during the last year. The issue of including or excluding rats, birds and mice from inclusion under the Animal Welfare Act has been a difficult battle for both those that wish to exclude them and those that wish to include these animals under this legislation. As of the writing of this abstract, the Senate, which originally intended to include rats, birds and mice under the Animal Welfare Act, has passed an amendment which will permanently exclude their listing under this Act. During the last several years it has become clear that refinement, as one of the 3Rs, has and will become the most important set of activities to add humanness to animal experimentation. It is clear that refinement approaches provide the opportunity to possibly eliminate or significantly minimize any pain or distress in animal protocol. My presentation will focus on CAAT's (http://caat.jhsph.edu) activities in this important area. Understanding potential health hazards to environmental industrial chemicals has become a major focus of activity both in the US, Europe and Japan. These programs offer the first opportunity to provide information, in the public domain, on these chemicals. One of the consequences, however, is the potential requirement for large numbers of animals. In the presentation, I will focus on two approaches to significantly including the 3Rs in these important programs. Although it is common practice in Japan to recognize contributions of laboratory animals through a day of memorialization, this has not been the case in the United States. During the last year, several activities have been initiated to begin to institutionalize memorial services for animals used in research. As the host institution of Altweb (http://altweb.jhsph.edu), the alternative web site internationally, current statistics and accomplishments will be provided on its worldwide utilization. (+info)
An ergonomics process for the care and use of research animals.
Personnel who work with laboratory animals incur potential occupational health risks that can lead to the development of musculoskeletal disorders. Demanding manual tasks may also result in increased errors, worker fatigue, poor human performance, and decreased productivity. Studies have shown that a comprehensive ergonomics program that utilizes a systematic risk management approach can reduce the likelihood of exposure to musculoskeletal disorder risk factors and remove barriers to human performance. Research has characterized the risk factors of musculoskeletal disorder exposure in terms of force, frequency, posture, and muscle exertion. Ergonomic risk factors for typical animal handling tasks and work areas are identified, and a method is suggested for prioritizing interventions using interrelated data indicators. An initial review of potential control measures is offered to improve the health, safety, and effectiveness of people involved in the care and use of research animals. (+info)
Occupational medicine programs for animal research facilities.
Occupational medicine is a key component of a comprehensive occupational health and safety program in support of laboratory animal research and production facilities. The mission of the department is to maximize employee health and productivity utilizing a population health management approach, which includes measurement and analysis of health benefits utilization. The department works in close cooperation with other institutional health and safety professionals to identify potential risks from exposure to physical, chemical, and biological hazards in the workplace. As soon as exposures are identified, the department is responsible for formulating and providing appropriate medical surveillance programs. Occupational medicine is also responsible for targeted delivery of preventive and wellness services; management of injury, disease, and disability; maintenance of medical information; and other clinic services required by the institution. Recommendations are provided for the organization and content of occupational medicine programs for animal research facilities. (+info)