COVID-19 Guidance

Research Continuity for Research involving SARS-CoV-2 at UWM resulting from the COVID-19 Pandemic – 2020

CDC Interim Laboratory Biosafety Guidelines

All researchers are required to adhere to the most current guidelines for COVID-19 work, found at the following page: Interim Laboratory Biosafety Guidelines for Handling and Processing Specimens Associated with Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

Interim Laboratory Biosafety Guidance for Research with SARS-CoV-2 and IBC Requirements under the NIH Guidelines

All researchers performing rDNA studies involving SARS-CoV-2 are required to adhere to the most current guidelines set forth by the NIH OSP, found at the following page: Interim Laboratory Biosafety Guidance for Research with SARS-CoV-2 and IBC Requirements under the NIH Guidelines

SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) Laboratory Biosafety Guidelines for Research at UWM

UWM SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) Biosafety Guidelines: This is a PDF overview of the requirements for work at UWM with anything related to SARS-CoV-2.

General Information

  • Please refer to the UWM COVID-19 website for current UWM information.
  • The UWM OSP website also has important information related to Sponsored Programs.
  • The UWM Biosafety Officer will continue to review submissions and be available remotely. We ask that all questions and discussions be handled remotely using phone, email or TEAMS. For initial contact, please utilize email.

COVID-19 research (new submissions) involving laboratory studies

  • Please submit a new study using IManager and email uwm-biosafety@uwm.edu letting us know a study related to COVID-19 has been submitted and your target start date.

Modifications to biosafety protocols being made because of COVID-19 impacts

  • Please submit modifications using IManager and email uwm-biosafety@uwm.edu letting us know a change is required because of COVID-19.

Biosafety Protocol Submissions

  • Unless there are special circumstances (COVID-19 research, urgent changes as a result of COVID-19, etc.), research submissions will be reviewed in the order of receipt.
  • In addition to urgent issues related to COVID-19 research mentioned above, the biosafety officer is still supporting other research compliance and environmental health and safety functions during this time. This may result in the review of standard submissions being slower than normal.
  • Note that the minimum requirements are necessary for the following work:
    • Proteins derived from SARS-CoV-2 expressed in model host organisms, such as E.coli BL-21, must be conducted in BSL-2.
    • Whole virus cultures, human samples suspected to be infected with SARS-CoV-2, etc. must be handled in BSL-3.

Ongoing Research

  • The Institutional Biosafety Committee would like to remind researchers that plan to continue their work with biohazardous materials to check their PPE supplies. Work with Procurement to acquire routine PPE, disinfectants, and/ or research materials. While there are shortages of many items, it is still important to continue ordering as usual you are able, as the resources will be shipped as when they become available. Be mindful of your shipments and don’t buy in excess. If you run out of PPE supplies, disinfectants, and/ or research materials while awaiting a shipment, please work together within your departments and pool your resources to support each other. It is important that while we want research to continue, we also are ensuring the safety of our UWM research community. DO NOT work without wearing the required PPE for the work being conducted.
  • Follow all guidelines provided by the CDC for workplace practices.
  • Disinfect space, equipment, and surfaces before and after conducting lab activities.
  • If the appropriate PPE is not available for working in the lab due to shortages, then activities must be suspended. Do not work in a lab without wearing all appropriate PPE.

Resources

Information on Coronavirus: UWM Information Regarding the COVID-19 outbreak. Check regularly for updates.

Research Continuity Guidance for Laboratories and Research Facilities: Guidance regarding laboratory operations during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Research Continuity for Human Subjects Research at UWM: Guidance from the IRB regarding Human Subjects Research

ABSA International SARS-CoV-2 Toolbox: ABSA International comprehensive resources list to support researchers, workplaces, and safety in the workplace during the COVID-19 outbreak.