The Animal Care and Use Occupational Health Program (ACUOHP) provides a medical screening service for research personnel who may have direct contact with animals. The written program describing this process is located here: Animal Care and Use Occupational Health Program (ACUOHP).
UCSC policy requires that all faculty, staff, visiting researchers, and students who work directly with vertebrate animals, unfixed animal tissues or body fluids, and/or who work in animal housing areas, participate in the ACUOHP. The ACUOHP provides a framework for assessing and controlling potential health risks for participants in animal research protocols.
Medical Surveillance Process
Use of Live Vertebrate Animal Subjects with Contact
All UC Santa Cruz personnel, including faculty, post-docs, staff, students (graduate and undergraduate), and volunteers, listed as working on an IACUC Use of Live Vertebrate Animal Subjects with Contact protocol, must complete the ACUOHP process for protocol approval. Non-UCSC personnel affiliated with other institutions or agencies shall be covered under their own organization's occupational health surveillance program and ARE NOT required to enroll in the UCSC ACUOHP.
As of November 2014, UCSC is beginning to use an on-line risk assessment and medical screening tool known as the "Occupational Health Surveillance System" (OHSS). This system greatly simplifies the medical review process, eliminating the need to fax copies of the ACUHOP forms to EH&S and the Health Center. Everyone with a CruzID Gold userid and password can use the OHSS system. Other personnel (e.g., community volunteers) will need to continue to use the paper-based process. Contact email@example.com with questions or for assistance.
Steps for Using OHSS
1. PI or co-researcher logs into OHSS and creates a Risk Assessment for the protocol (click on "create a new risk assessment").
2. Enter name of each participant (last name, first name) and click "add participant."
3. The participant reviews the Risk Assessment and accepts or rejects if changes are needed.
4. After accepting the Risk Assessment, the participant completes the confidential Health Questionnaire and submits for review by the Physician. Make sure to have your vaccination history available as vaccine dates are requested on the questionnaire.
5. The Physician reviews the participant's Risk Assessment and Health Questionnaire and sends the individual a Medical Assessment for review.
6. The participant logs into OHSS and reviews/acknowledges the Medical Assessment. If there are questions from the Physician, a response from the participant will be needed to complete the process.
Email notifications are sent from OHSS after each step. If you don't receive your email, you may need to check your junk mail.
The Risk Assessment is completed by the PI/Co-Researcher and verified by the participant. The form contains a series of questions about the protocol and provides the Physician with information on potential risks within the work environment related to the protocol, such as:
- Animal Contact
- Biological Agents
- Chemical Agents
- Physical Agents
- Bloodborne Pathogens
- General Safety Training
The Health Questionnaire is completed by the participant and confidentially routed to a Physician. Participants should be prepared with vaccine information to streamline the process. The form provides the Physician with personal health information, including:
- General Health History
- Prescription Medications
- Health Status Changes
Your medical information is protected by law. PIs are not granted access to your Health Questionnaire or Medical Assessment.
The Medical Assessment is completed by the Physician and reviewed by the participant. The Medical Assessment provides the participant with evaluation information including:
- If cleared for work
- Needed follow up
- Additional requirements:
- Tuberculosis Screening
- Hepatitis B Vaccine
- Needed Immunizations or Tests
You may still use the paper-based ACUHOP system by completing the following steps:
Download Medical Surveillance Form A, Form B, and Form C.
Principal Investigator and participant complete Form A (Animal Contact Risk Assessment Questionnaire).
Participant completes confidential medical questionnaire Form B (Animal Contact Medical History Questionnaire) and top portion of Form C (Animal Contact Occupational Medical Surveillance).
Participant sends a copy of completed Form A to EH&S via e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) or mail (EH&S, Attn: Biosafety Officer, Mail Stop: EH&S Trailer)
Participant places Forms A, B, and C in a sealed envelope and sends directly to the UCSC Student Health Center via mail ("Student Health Center") or via secure fax (831-459-3546).
Questions related to the medical surveillance process and participant ACUOHP approval should be directed to email@example.com or by calling (831) 459-2553.
Observation Only or Vertebrate Sample Protocols
Submission of an Observation of Non-Human Vertebrates – No Contact protocol or a Use of Vertebrate Samples protocol to the IACUC does not require completion of Medical Surveillance Forms A, B or C (detailed in “Medical Surveillance” section) unless you are notified to do so by EH&S. Observation Only or Vertebrate Sample protocols will be reviewed by EH&S for health and safety concerns (biosafety, field safety, general safety, etc). If additional information is necessary or medical surveillance is deemed appropriate, EH&S will contact the PI directly to request details.
Questions related to the risk assessment process for Observation Only or Vertebrate Sample protocols should be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (831) 459-2553.
Exposure Incident Response
In the event of a serious accident, injury, or illness call 911.
Fact Sheets & Links
Rabies Fact Sheets
Rabies Information from the California Department of Public Health (many useful links)
Zoonotic Disease Information
The Center for Food Security and Public Health (Iowa State University)
Information on Zoonotic Diseases - UCSB Office of Research
A Researchers Guide to the Animal Care and Use Occupational Health Program (ACUOHP):
Frequently Asked Questions (and answers!)
Information on the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC), including application forms and procedures:
UCSC Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee.
For more information, contact the Campus Biosafety Officer at email@example.com or (831) 459-2553.