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Australia boosts animal rights with new guidance for researchers

This article was originally published in Clinica

Executive Summary

Australia has boosted its regulations governing animal rights in scientific research. A new guideline has been released, which is described as “in line” with the current “Code of Practice for the Care and Use of Animals for Scientific Purposes”, which is a mandatory monitored standard for all research institutions in the country. The guidance, which has attracted international interest and will be circulated to research bodies in the UK, Asia and Europe, reportedly focuses on “all aspects of the care of animals used in research”, through reference to the “3 Rs”: replacement of animals with other research methods; reduction of the number of animals used in research; and refinement of research techniques to minimise pain and distress. “The Guidelines to Promote the Wellbeing of Animals Used for Scientific Purposes: The Assessment and Alleviation of Pain and Distress in Research Animals” was released by the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) in August. The guidance was developed by animal care experts, researchers and Animal Welfare Committee members on behalf of the NHMRC. The guidelines are available from the NHMRC website.

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