BETHESDA, Md. (AP) — A U.S. military medical school in Bethesda says it no longer uses live animals in its training programs, starting with this school year.

The Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences said Thursday it began phasing out the use of live animals with the opening in 2000 of the National Capital Area Medical Simulation Center. The school says it now uses simulators to teach surgical skills and physiology.

The Washington-based Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine has been pressing military and private medical schools to end their use of live animals.

The group says just four medical schools in the United States still use live animals for medical student training.

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