Last year Maine Medical Center used 13 live pigs for it's medical training program, as well as 89 other animals, mostly mice, in research. Those numbers are based on an annual report to the USDA for 2018, according to the Associated Press.

The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine says it was once common for medical students to use pigs to practice tracheotomies, insert breathing tubes, and procedures that open the chest. The animals are euthanized afterward, the article reports.

Last week Maine Med issued a statement that said it’s transitioning emergency medical training entirely to simulators and will fall in line with a national trend in which hospitals choose high tech simulators instead of animals. The simulators are very advanced these days, including mannequins that have lifelike skin, fat and muscle and use computer software to mimic live humans, the committee said. Medical students also practice on cadavers the Press Herald reports.



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