Animal Research Policy

November 19, 2018

The Bloomberg School is committed to protecting the rights and welfare of animals used in research. All students involved in animal research must first complete an online training module, Animal Care and Use, available through myLearning in the JHU Portal, before beginning work with animals. Additional training may also be required. Students must also be listed as student investigators on projects they are working on that involve animals.

Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee

The care and use of animal subjects is regulated by the Animal Welfare Act, which is implemented by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The University has one assurance with the federal government (the Office of Laboratory Animal Welfare [OLAW]) and, therefore, the University has one animal care and use committee (IACUC). Faculty from the Bloomberg School, the School of Medicine, and the Homewood campus serve on this committee.

An approved protocol MUST be obtained before animals can be purchased. Questions regarding submission of animal research protocols should be addressed to the IACUC Office at 443-287-3738. 

Animal care and procurement is under the purview of Johns Hopkins Research Animal Resources. For those exposed to animals either directly or indirectly, their bedding, waste products, fresh animal tissues or equipment involved in animal use and care, Johns Hopkins requires the following to reduce health risks associated with animal exposures.

Medical

All faculty, staff, postdoctoral fellows, students and contractors who work with or are exposed to animals and/or their body fluids, fresh tissues, bedding or caging must be enrolled in the Animal Exposure Surveillance Program (AESP), managed by the Occupational Health Services office, located at 98 N. Broadway, 4th floor.

This program allows Johns Hopkins to:

  1. offer you appropriate protection from diseases associated with animal use and care,
  2. review your current health status and
  3. monitor your health during employment.

Vaccinations/testing are performed free of charge by the Occupational Health Services office for the following:

  1. Vaccinia vaccination for individuals exposed to non-highly attenuated orthopoxviruses that infect humans including cowpox, vaccinia and vaccinia subspecies (unless medically contraindicated).
  2. Rabies vaccination for a limited number of individuals, including Animal Services Staff, those using wild caught animals, dogs (conditioned), some non-human primates and farm animals. If you have already been vaccinated for rabies, blood tests are needed every other year to be sure you are still protected.
  3. Hepatitis B vaccination for those individuals who have not already been vaccinated.
  4. Biannual tuberculosis (TB) screening is required for anyone who works around non-human primates.

To enroll in the AESP, and to inquire about testing and vaccination, please contact Occupational Health Services at 410-955-6211.

Training and Policies

The Department of Health, Safety and Environment (HSE) provides services and leadership to Johns Hopkins University in the areas of laboratory safety, pre-placement assessment, the use of personal protective equipment, incident and injury reporting, environmental monitoring, the treatment of occupational illness and injuries, fire safety, biological safety, chemical safety, facility and equipment safety, and employee safety training.  Questions about policies or how to attend training should be directed to the HSE department at 410-955-5918.  Information regarding training, policies and guidance are available online at the HSE homepage.

Wearing particular types of clothing (such as surgical gowns, scrubs or smocks) and other items (such as masks or goggles) while working is required for specific jobs in order to protect you from injury or illness. The University will provide these required items to you for use on the job as necessary.  Inquiries regarding the appropriate personal protective equipment needed for a specific task can be directed to laboratory supervisors or the HSE department.

All faculty, staff and students must attend the Hazard Communication training session at least once during their employment. Those hired in 1998 or later should have received this training during New Employee Orientation.  Questions about how to attend this training should be directed to the HSE department.

All faculty, staff and students with exposure to human or non-human primate blood borne pathogens will be entered in the Blood Borne Pathogen Exposure Control Program. Training is required when hired or before starting work with materials that may contain blood borne pathogens, and must be completed annually thereafter.  Questions about how to attend this training should be directed to the HSE department.

All faculty, staff and students who use radioactive isotopes or handle animals (or their cages or bedding) that have been treated with radioactive isotopes must attend the Radiation Safety training session. Questions regarding this training should be directed to the Radiation Safety office at 410-955-3710.