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Australian code of practice for the care and use of animals for scientific purposes submission

Personal Details
First Name: 
Last Name: 
De Veer
E. Submission
Online Written Submission
Written Submission: 
Comment on specific Sections, clauses or sentences of draft revised Code of Practice
Select if you wish to provide comment on specific Section, clauses or sentences within the draft revised Code of Practice.
Comment on specific Sections, clauses or sentences of the draft revised Code of Practice
Specific Comments: 
Section 5-Introductory paragraphs

I am extremely concerned about the proposed changes to the surgery guidelines requiring a Veterinary Surgeon to be present or perform the surgery. I feel this is impractical and not required once a researcher is adequately trained. Surgery is not a difficult procedure if you are adequately trained and have a good understanding of Biology and anatomy which most researchers within the life sciences have. We are already required to report any adverse events in large animal surgery and the existing Animal Ethics committees check that we are capable in any given procedure. The procedures must be thoroughly outlined and signed off by the Ethics Committee which contains a veterinarian and is an appropriate forum for oversight of any procedure.


A more practical solution could be to require that the initial researcher must have a surgery procedure observed by a Veterinarian before they can routinely perform it or train others in its use, however requiring a Veterinarian present at all surgeries would be prohibitively expensive and result in the almost complete abolition of large animal disease models within this country. I feel this would be a loss to Australian research as large animals are a vital link between research carried out in mice and more practical application within large animals. Additionally some procedures are only viable in large animals as mice are too small, or do not adequately reflect the conditions within humans. I feel I am extremely competent and proficient at the surgical procedures I carry out in large animals and would only require the oversight of a Veterinarian if I was attempting new and unrelated procedures.

Page reviewed: 1 March, 2013