Recently, the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) announced a final rule amending the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) regulations to reduce duplicative requirements and the administrative burden for research facilities while continuing to ensure humane animal care.
As part of this action, the requirement for annual reviews of protocols already approved by the IACUC has been eliminated. This will result in an IACUC approved protocol remaining valid for 3 years after initial IACUC approval and requiring a new submission to the IACUC for review and approval at the end of the 3-year term.
The University of Pittsburgh Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) welcomes this change, and in coordination with the Office of Research Protections (ORP) and the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) has updated its requirements to agree with this final rule. Beginning Monday, March 7th, 2022, for all active and new protocols, annual reviews for approved IACUC protocols will no longer be required. All expiration dates for protocols will be reset to 3 years after initial approval of the protocol. All protocols, including any currently pending annual renewal submission will be dismissed as it is no longer required and approval extended through the 3-year approval term.
Note, it is still the responsibility of the Principal Investigator to ensure ongoing training requirements and compliance with the Medical Surveillance Program for Animal Users are met for all individuals listed on their protocol(s).
Please be sure to provide updated approval documents to the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) and your sponsors as required. These can be found in the IACUC protocol submission system, Animal Research Online (ARO) in the Protocol Documents page by viewing the Original Approval Letter.
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Animal Research Protections at firstname.lastname@example.org.