Anyone concerned with an animal’s welfare or aware of non-compliance with the policies, rules, regulations, and laws regarding animal care and use for research and teaching should contact anyone in the IACUC administration, the IACUC Chair at 273-9537, or the Attending Veterinarian at 273-9246. Reporting an incident of suspected non-compliance or mistreatment of animals will initiate an investigation by the IACUC. You will not be harassed, discriminated against, or be subject to any reprisals or retaliations for reporting violations in good faith. You may provide the information anonymously. If you choose to reveal your identity, you will be protected to the extent possible by law. To report anonymously call 1-877-556-5356 or go to www.reportlineweb.com/uf .
Each IACUC member, alternate, consultant, and staff member is responsible for referring any complaints received to the IACUC Chair (or the Chair’s delegate) for investigation. If the complaint is made in writing or via email it must be delivered/forwarded to the Chair with a note indicating the date of receipt by the IACUC member or office. If the complaint is made by telephone, the individual receiving the complaint shall make a note of the name and number of the caller, direct the caller to the Chair, and contact the Chair to make sure the complaint was received. All allegations of animal mistreatment will be taken seriously and investigated even if the complainant refuses/declines to disclose his or her identity.
The Chair may request the PAM coordinator to perform a preliminary investigation. If warranted the Chair will then assign a subcommittee of IACUC members to conduct an investigation of the allegation(s) and report its findings. The subcommittee may consist of consultants, veterinarians, or other experts as needed. The subcommittee will gather all relevant information and conduct interviews with the involved individual(s) and the complainant(s) (if not an anonymous complaint). Once the investigation is concluded a preliminary report will be prepared which outlines the essential details of the potential non-compliance, the findings of the subcommittee, and the recommendations concerning appropriate action for correction and prevention of future non-compliances.
The report is submitted to the IACUC for presentation and discussion at a convened full committee meeting. The IACUC will provide the preliminary report to the individual(s) involved and invite them to the convened meeting to respond to any questions of the committee. The IACUC will consider all information available and make a recommendation concerning appropriate action(s). The scope of the investigation and recommendations will be limited to all aspects of the welfare, care and use of animals. The Chair will notify the responsible individual(s) involved, the department chair or unit administrator for the responsible individual(s) involved and the appropriate administrators of the IACUC’s decision.
The Institutional Official (UF Vice-President for Research) will be notified of the IACUC’s actions and recommendations. If the IACUC determines this is a reportable incident, the Compliance Officer will report the details and the corrective actions taken to the Office of Laboratory Animal Welfare (OLAW) on behalf of the Institutional Official. If the incident involved an USDA covered species and resulted in a suspension of the protocol, the USDA and any Federal funding agency will also be notified. The University administration may take additional action in accordance with other pertinent University policies and/or regulations.