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Laboratory Animal Exposure Risk Assessment Program (LAERAP)

The University of Maryland School of Medicine is committed to providing a safe working environment for all personnel, including individuals handling research animals. The LAERAP is designed to assess the risk for personnel involved in the direct care of laboratory animals and their living quarters as well as those individuals who have both direct and indirect contact with animals (live or dead), their viable tissues, body fluids, or wastes.

The LAERAP is also designed to convey relevant information on the risk associated with the laboratory animal environment including physical injuries, allergens, zoonotic diseases, and hazardous agents. The LAERAP consists of completing a web-based, medical, health questionnaire and reviewing of the Occupational Health and Safety Program for Personnel with Laboratory Animal Contact (PDF) and the Animal Allergy Alert (Please see page 4 of the Occupational Health PDF). Please note that employees will be contacted by email if an appointment with a physician is required for further review of their medical history to complete the risk assessment.

An excellent reference for personnel health and safety when working with research animals is the NCR Occupational Health and Safety in the Care and Use of Research Animals, which can be located at http://www.nap.edu/books/0309052998/html/index.html.

Why is the LAERAP required?

The Public Health Service (PHS) Policy on Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals requires institutions that receive federal funds to provide occupational healthcare services to employees who work in laboratory animal facilities or have frequent contact with animals. This same policy requires animal care and use programs to follow the recommendations of the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals. This guide not only provides guidelines and references for the welfare of research animals, but also recommends an Occupational Health and Safety Program for those working in animal facilities and having exposure to animals.

Who must enroll in the LAERAP?

  • All SOM principal investigators.
  • Anyone that is exposed to laboratory animals.
  • Anyone that handles laboratory animals.
  • Anyone that handles laboratory animal tissues, body fluids, or wastes.

NOTE: Every person listed on a SOM IACUC protocol MUST be enrolled in this program prior to final IACUC approval.

How do I enroll in the LAERAP?

  1. Please click on the following link www.ehs.umaryland.edu  
  2. Click on the "MyEHS" link near the top of the left navigation bar.
    1. If you are already registered, please log in and proceed to #3.
    2. If you are not registered, please register as a new user and then log in.
  3. Once logged into "MyEHS", click on Laboratory Animal Exposure Risk Assessment Program (in the upper right column). Then click on Laboratory Animal Exposure Risk Assessment Form. Follow the directions and complete the form.

    IMPORTANT:  

    1. The following pieces of information should be known before completing this form.
      • Year of last tetanus vaccination.
      • Year of last tuberculosis testing -- ***only required for those individuals working with non-human primates.
    2. A copy of the current Occupational Health Program for Personnel with Substantial Laboratory Animal Contact and Animal Allergy Alert is available at this website and should be reviewed at this time. If you have any questions regarding its contents, please contact Veterinary Resources (6-3540) or Environmental Health and Safety (6-7055).

  4. Once complete, click submit, and log out of MyEHS. You will be contacted by email if an appointment with a physician is required for further review of your medical history to complete your risk assessment.

NOTE: All information collected on the medical health questionnaire is strictly for use by UMB Student and Employee Health. Except for reporting your compliance in completing the form, information from this form will not be released without your knowledge and authorization, unless permitted or required by law.

Are there any costs associated with the LAERAP?

No, unless you've been contacted to schedule an appointment with a physician at UMB Student and Employee Health. There is a medical evaluation fee of $100 for new patients and $80 for current patients that will be charged to the employee's department.

Do I have to do anything after I've enrolled in the LAERAP?

No, unless...

  1. You've been contacted by email to schedule an appointment with a physician at UMB Student and Employee Health. This appointment is required to further review your medical history in order to complete your risk assessment.

    OR 

  2. If you've become injured, feel you're developing an allergy, or if you've developed any health concerns related to your research animal exposure, contact UMB Student and Employee Health (410-328-6791) for medical review and consultation. For injuries or exposures, see the following URL for specific instructions: http://www.ehs.umaryland.edu/Insurance/Workers_Comp/index.htm.