Information Resources for Institutional Animal Care and Use Committees 1985-1999 *************************

Department of Veterans Affairs

Veterans Health Administration

Washington DC 20420

April 14, 1994


The purpose of this Veterans Health Administration (VHA) directive is to make explicit the application of provisions of M-3, Part I, Chapter 12, Animal Subjects in Research, to: (a) animals owned by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), but housed in non-VA research facilities, and (b) animals housed in VA facilities, but owned by non-VA entities. This directive will be incorporated into M-3, Part I, Chapter 1 by February, 1995.

In 1992, The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) informed VA that research animals owned by VA but held in non-VA facilities, were subject to VA oversight by the SAS (Subcommittee on Animal Studies (SAS) of the VA medical center Research and Development (R&D) Committee. In response to these expectations, and similar expectations where converse arrangements for housing non-VA animals in VA housing existed, further clarification to avoid duplication of effort was sought with USDA and Office for Protection from Research Risks (OPRR)/National Institutes of Health (NIH). The policies and procedures announced in this directive are designed to meet VA, USDA, and OPRR requirements with respect to oversight of research animal care and use practices in the situations described.



a. In situations where animal subjects are moved between the VA medical center and its affiliated institutions for research or care and housing, the VA medical center remains accountable for compliance of the research and the care and housing of all animals that are housed at the VA medical center, or held there temporarily for research.

b. The semi-annual program review of the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) of an institution that houses, holds temporarily, or conducts research on VA-owned animals may be accepted by the VA medical center provided that the report is submitted to and accepted by the SAS of the VA medical center for the responsible Institutional Official (medical center Director) of the VA medical center. Such reports must be held by the VA medical center and acted upon in accordance with the IACUC findings.

c. When desirable or feasible, a VA medical center and its affiliated institution may have a joint SAS (or IACUC), provided that the appointment of the committee members is concurred in by the VA medical center responsible Institutional Official, has representation from the VA medical center, and is accountable to the VA medical center Institutional Official. In such cases it is recommended that joint committees have responsibility to the VA medical center and the affiliated institution.

d. Responsibility for animal subject studies initiated by VA investigators, regardless of funding source, cannot be delegated. It remains the responsibility of the VA medical center to ensure that these studies comply with regulations and policies governing the use of animal subjects in experimentation, irrespective of administrative arrangements with affiliated institutions.

e. A VA medical center that houses animals belonging to an affiliated institution may accept the animal subject protocol review of the affiliated institution provided that the protocol is submitted to, and accepted by the R&D Committee and the SAS of the VA medical center. Such protocols must be maintained on file, subject to review as described in the Federal Regulations, VA Policy, and PHS Policy when applicable. NOTE: All animal subject protocols submitted to VA Central Office for VA funding must use the VA Animal Component of Research Protocol (ACORP), see M-3, Part I, Chapter 12, Appendix 12C.

f. When preparing the USDA Annual Report of Research Facility, it is acceptable to report animals owned by the VA medical center, but housed in an affiliated institution, on the VA medical center report form or the report of the affiliated institution. This practice must be consistent across species. It is recommended that when VA medical center animals are reported by affiliated institutions, a copy of the report of the affiliated institution be retained by the VA medical center. Records of ownership and research use of such animals must be retrievable at the VA medical center.


a.Manual M-3, Part I, Chapter 12.
b.Title 7 CFR 2.17, 2.51, and 371.2 (g).
c.Title 9 CFR Chapter 1 (1-1-92), subchapter A, Animal Welfare.
d.Title 7 United States Code Sections 2131 through 2157.
e.OPRR/PHS Policy on Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals.

Revised September 1986.

6. RESCISSION: None. This VHA Directive will expire (Date).

7. FOLLOW-UP RESPONSIBILITY: Associate Chief Medical Director for Research and
Development (12/4).

S/ by Dennis Smith for
John T. Farrar, M.D.
Acting Under Secretary for Health

CO: E-mailed 4/15/94
FLD: RD, MA, DO, OC, OCRO and 200 - FAX 4/15/94
EX: Boxes 104, 88, 63, 60, 54, 52, 47 and 44 - FAX 4/15/94

Top | Federal Fundholders

Return to: Title Page | Main Contents | Using this Resource

Last updated February 22, 2001