Animal Workers Medical Surveillance Programs FAQs
All faculty, staff, students and volunteers who have contact with animals used for research, teaching or testing, including direct contact with non-sanitized caging or enclosures, unfixed or unsterilized animal tissues, fluids or wastes, individuals who provide service support for the equipment, devices or facilities, and those who attend facility inspections.
Animal workers (as defined above) must complete the AWMSP Consent for Medical Evaluation form and the Medical History form. These forms go to a medical professional to review the hazards and health history. In some cases, follow up physical exams, vaccinations or other medical testing may be needed. The medical professional will provide the university with a "fit for duty" assessment, which may include required safety measures (e.g. may only lift 20 pounds, must wear gloves while handling mice, etc.). The assessment by the medical professional must be received prior to beginning work with animals.
Current animal workers who previously declined to participate in the medical surveillance program must complete the AWMSP Consent for Medical Evaluation form and the Medical History form. These forms must be submitted no later than Oct. 31, 2017 in order to continue working with animals at the university.
This will be based on the individual’s risk assessment. The medical professional will determine the frequency, based on the hazards. Should an individual have a substantial change in the hazards they are handling and/or the animals with which they are working, the IACUC office may determine new surveillance forms are required to be submitted to and reviewed by the medical professional.
The university uses Palouse Medical as its primary resource for review and medical evaluation required for the AWMSP. Having dedicated medical professionals allows them to be versed in zoonotic diseases and the hazards associated with animal work and various species at the university. We do not allow an assessment from your primary physician at this time. You must use the university forms and follow the steps outlined above in "What does the AWMSP consist of?"
The employee's department is responsible for costs associated with medical screening, evaluation, testing, vaccination or other medical requirements under the AWMSP.
Yes. The information you disclosed in the Medical History, as well as the results of your medical examination and any tests are confidential and are maintained by Palouse Medical, consistent with regulatory requirements of confidentiality and privacy associated with such information. The only information that the university obtains as a result of AMWSP screenings and evaluations is generic indications of whether or not an employee is fit for duty, and what safety measures may be required to allow the employee to continue to perform the tasks associated with his or her position. Specific medical information (e.g. weight, blood pressure, medical conditions, medical prescriptions) are kept confidential by Palouse Medical.
The AWMSP is a preventive measure used to screen and monitor an employee's health when they will be exposed to a hazardous work environment. This is different than a reactive evaluation and treatment provided in response to a reported workplace injury or illness.
Third parties (i.e. individuals who are not UI faculty, staff, students or volunteers) who have university-approved access to and contact with animals are also required to participate in the university AWMSP. Alternately, such individuals may provide in satisfaction of this university requirement adequate proof of participation in a similar medical surveillance program and requirements for animal work established through that program; such evaluation and conditions for work must be for species and/or work conditions substantially similar to those at the university.
Please contact the Office of Research Assurances at 208-885-6162 or IACUC@uidaho.edu to discuss your specific requirements.
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