COVID-related FAQs

Animal Care Services (ACS) personnel continue to provide care and feeding to animals housed in Memorial’s animal facilities on a daily basis throughout all COVID alert levels.

Please refer to Memorial’s COVID-19 Information Hub for the latest updates.

My research involves access to Memorial’s Animal Care Services facilities. What are the COVID-19 protocols for access and use?

Access to Memorial’s St. John’s campus animal facilities is restricted to those who have approved protocols and training, provided all restrictions are followed corresponding to the university’s COVID alert level. For all new protocols, procedures or personnel, Animal Care Committee approval and co-ordination with Animal Care Services Operations Manager and Clinical Veterinarian is required.

Are extra precautions required for working in the animal facilities?

All researchers, staff and students are required to wear a mask while in the animal facilities. For entry into animal holding rooms, procedure rooms and surgeries, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) requirements continue to be cap, gown, mask, gloves and booties. For any procedures where physical distancing cannot be maintained at two metres or more, please advise Animal Care Services Operations Manager Charlene Abbott, and we will work with the research team to find appropriate solutions, where possible.

Can I order animals?

Animal Care Services suspends animal ordering if a Level 5 COVID alert level is in place. For all other alert levels, orders may be placed. If ACS personnel have any concerns regarding housing or availability of personnel to assist with daily animal care, a member of the team will contact you and you may be asked to delay your order to a later date.

Are there any changes to the process for registering for or participating in animal handling and procedure training?

Training may proceed for animal handling and procedures but is dependent on staff availability and density requirements. Please contact ACS to confirm access to training. In order for lab members to access training, they must be listed on a protocol.

Will the Animal Care Committee (ACC) continue to function during the pandemic?

The committee is operating virtually with its full membership. Researchers may submit new protocols or amendments through the Researcher Portal.