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Managing the risks - controls in registered rooms



What is needed?

Additional guidance
Fixtures and fittings
Benching and flooring should be easy to clean.
This means impervious to water, resistant to disinfectants and other cleaning agents used and smooth and continuous with floor coverings coved to the walls. 

There should be a hand wash basin near the exit of the laboratory

Taps should be able to be operated without using the hands eg wrist/elbow taps or automatic proximity controls. 
The room door should be lockable
This is to prevent prevent unauthorised access during procedures - suitable signage should also be posted.
Room should be screened from view (from outside)
Could be on a temporary basis, eg blinds on doors and windows to be used when procedures are taking place.
Access control
If room is used for non-animal work, use of the room should be managed to control cross-contamination

This could be achieved by use of central booking system or else only using the room during defined periods eg at the start/end of the working day.

No non-animal work should take place during a procedure and only those directly involved in the procedure should be present. Where this is not possible eg room contains shared, specialised equipment, measures are needed to control contamination of room and the equipment in it by allergens.

Cleaning and waste handling

The area where the work is carried out must be cleaned at the end of the procedure.

Wet cleaning rather than dry sweeping should be used.  A HEPA filtered hand-held vacuum cleaner could also be used to collect any fur/hair.  A suitable disinfectant should be used to decontaminate the working area.

If space is shared with other users, there should be documented procedure in place to indicate when the room is “safe” for others to use eg a sign-off sheet to indicate that work areas have been cleaned and disinfected and all waste disposed of appropriately

All waste should removed from the room at the end of the procedure and taken to the bulk waste store
If immediate disposal of carcasses is not possible, these should be double bagged and frozen pending final disposal.
All animals should be transported to the room using appropriate filter-topped transport boxes and only opened within local exhaust ventilation (LEV) in the room
Boxes should be cleaned and disinfected before return to the BSU; contaminated boxes should remain in the LEV pending cleaning.  Transport between sites should be carried out using the road transport service organized by Biological Services.  Transport within buildings should be carried out avoiding public areas/general circulation, eg using goods lifts, as far as possible.  Where this is not possible, transport should be carried out at the beginning/end of the working day.
All work should take place using some form of local exhaust ventilation (but see below and Approaches to control - by example)
Departmental rooms are unlikely to have dedicated ventilation systems in place, so LEV should be used for all procedures .  Although rooms may be ventilated for comfort reasons, the extracted air may be circulated elsewhere within the building so this should not be used to control airborne allergen.
Personal protective equipment
A Howie style laboratory coat/back-fastening gown (preferably disposable) and non-latex gloves should be worn for all procedures. 

Re-usable equipment eg lab coats should be changed regularly and stored safely eg in a lidded container/fastenable plastic bags if the room is used for non-animal work.  Clothing for laundry should be placed in appropriate lidded containers.

Personal protective equipment such as laboratory coats should be a different, eg by colour or design, to those worn elsewhere in the Department.  This will help ensure that contamination is not spread beyond the registered room

If all work takes place within suitable LEV, RPE does not need to be worn (but see Approaches to control - by example)

In some cases, using LEV, in particular safety cabinets, might impact on your ability to work safely eg where close visual examination is necessary to carry out a delicate surgical procedure.  This should be identified in your risk assessment and the following controls measures considered:

  • Respiratory protective equipment must be worn by all those involved in the procedure – the number of individuals present should be kept to the minimum required;

  • Any procedures that could give rise to the release of allergen such as clipping or shaving of fur should be carried out using LEV or ventilated clippers/razors prior to the procedure or else in the BSU before transporting the animal(s) to the registered room;

  • Consideration should be given to the use of sedation (if not already required for the procedure) to minimise the movement of the animal (provided that this is permitted under the conditions of the Project Licence).

Additional guidance on controls in the absence of LEV can be found in Approaches to control - by example
































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