A: OU Employees who are named on approved IACUC protocols. Anyone who receives a paycheck from OU and works with animals as part of their duties as an employee or researcher must go through the health screening process. It is encouraged (but not required) that student volunteers who will have frequent contact with animals for a year or more also have a health screening. Short-term student volunteers and students contacting animals as part of their coursework do not need to go through the health screening process.
A: The PI/supervisor named on the questionnaire will ultimately receive the bill from Norman Regional Clinics for the review of your form. You should name someone who can authorize payment from a university account. If you run your own lab and you control an account, you can name yourself as your PI/supervisor.
A: Most of our regulatory agencies use a book called Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals to define the standards by which research institutions need to operate if they use animals. The 2011, eighth edition of this book states: “Each institution must establish and maintain an occupational health and safety program (OHSP) as an essential part of the overall Program of animal care and use.” Our regulatory agencies have interpreted this statement to mean that every animal user must have some sort of annual interaction with a health care professional to get cleared to work with animals.
This rule has been on the books for several years, but OU has enjoyed a prolonged grace period for implementing the program. Our latest assurance review from the NIH Office of Lab Animal Welfare makes our continued use of animals conditional on implementing an occupational health and safety program with 100% participation among animal handlers by the end of October 2017.
A: It depends on the granting agency, but usually you can. It’s ok for NSF and NIH.
A: No. These documents contain confidential health information. You have to fill in the form yourself and send it in yourself.
A: Nobody, your health information never leaves the clinic. They will only notify the IACUC chair that you have been cleared to work with animals.
A: Norman Regional Clinics may request a person-to-person consultation if they see something that concerns them on your health questionnaire. If this happens, you may continue to work with Norman Regional Clinics or you could seek a consultation with your regular health care provider to go over the questionnaire, your medical history, and your job duties in more detail. Ultimately, you will not be prohibited from working with animals without a good reason.