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COVID-19 Toolkit

UVA Infectious Disease Preparedness and Response Plan (IDPRP) for COVID-19: word | pdf
Face Coverings Compared: Homemade vs. Masks vs. Respirators
BSL-3 Steering Committee (request facility space and resources)
Disposable Masks & Hand Sanitizer
COVID-19 Awareness and Prevention Training
 

Laboratory Safety Plan During COVID-19

The Laboratory Safety Plan During COVID-19 template is provided to assist researchers in clarifying how their laboratory intends to resume on-grounds research aligned with key health safety expectations developed by the Office of the Vice President for Research (VPR). For more information see the VPR's Research Ramp-Up Toolkit.

 

Lab Ramp-Up Checklist

The Lab Ramp-Up Checklist is provided to assist researchers in their lab-specific preparations for safely bringing their labs back online from temporary shutdown. The checklist provides guidance on public health considerations, and prioritized items to check upon immediate re-occupancy of spaces and as research activities restart.

 

The University of Virginia is closely monitoring the emergence of COVID-19, and consulting with experts at UVA Health, the Virginia Department of Health, the CDC and other partners. The top priority is the safety of the members of the University community, and UVA will make decisions based on public health guidance and current conditions here and elsewhere. Read more here.

 

EHS will continue to provide support to the UVA community throughout the COVID-19 crisis. Please understand that most staff are working remotely in accordance with UVA leadership decisions and public health recommendations.

  • All staff are available through e-mail and will continue to provide support to the best of their ability. Refer to this EHS staff listing for convenience.
  • EHS is actively monitoring the main office phone number of 434.982.4911 during normal business hours (8am-5pm, M-F)
  • The following essential support functions will be actively maintained by designated EHS personnel:
    • Critical radiation safety services (e.g. radioisotope delivery, dosimetry management, measures necessary to assure safety of personnel)
    • Hazardous materials management (e.g. pickup of regulated wastes that would otherwise compromise safety of personnel, operations, or compliance)
    • Incident Response (radiation, hazardous materials release, fire). Remember to call 911 for fire, explosions, serious Injuries or other imminently threatening incidents.
    • Other services deemed necessary to the safe continuity of essential research, patient care services and other essential University operations.

Thank you for your understanding and patience during this difficult time.

 

Register Your Activities

Letter to the Community, Melur Ramasubramanian (4/13/20)

In an effort to provide guidance and to improve efficiency and safety, the Office of Environmental Health & Safety (EHS) has been tasked by the Office of the Vice President for Research in consultation with the Provost to keep a register and serve as a liaison for these projects to the UVA community.

If you are using UVA resources (e.g., 3D printers or shops) for research or for innovation related to masks, respirators, face shields, ventilators, parts for medical devices, medical supplies, or other PPE or medical devices; and engaging in any of the activities listed below you are required to register with EHS.

  • Prototyping, fabrication, or manufacture
  • Testing and validation
  • Sterilization, disinfection, or decontamination
  • Offering material, advice, or other collaborations with commercial manufacturers or consortia and vendors to develop, design, retrofit, or validate these items

To register your activities, fill out this personal protective equipment (PPE) / medical device (MD) registration form and send to Kate Smith (kms2cx@virginia.edu).

Guidance

EHS continues to support research focused on developing innovative prototype devices during the COVID-19 crisis. While EHS does not have authority to approve use of such devices, we can provide assistance and guidance on testing device prototypes, and identify standards and guidelines that are important for the design process.

UVA EHS Guidance Regarding New Respirator PPE Development in a Public Health Emergency [download]

Standards and Guidance for Developing Prototype PPE Devices [download]

Guidance Regarding FDA´s Emergency Use Authorization for Face Shields [download]

 
 

Custodial services is conducting cleaning of public areas in accordance with CDC recommendations. These areas include counters, tabletops, door handles, kitchen surfaces, bathroom fixtures, push plates, light switch panels, railing and similar frequently touched surfaces in public areas.

Surfaces in spaces such as research laboratories, offices, student living areas, and similar types of spaces, which are not typically cleaned by custodial services are excluded. Some areas of grounds, specific to the operation, clean to the standard of their department or unit’s operational needs.


Use disinfectants recommended by CDC against SARS-CoV-2 in accordance with manufacturer recommendations. See the EPA’s Registered Antimicrobial Products for Use Against Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, the Cause of COVID-19 as well as the American Chemistry Council’s (ACC) Center for Biocide Chemistries (CBC) for a list of products that have been pre-approved by the EPA for use against emerging enveloped viral pathogens.

CDC recommends disposable wipes so that commonly used surfaces (e.g. keyboards, desks, remote controls) can be wiped down by students, staff, and faculty before each use.

Be considerate of potential chemical incompatibilities and sensitivities of personnel when employing local disinfection techniques.

Contact EHS if you have any questions regarding appropriate disinfectants.


Departments and laboratories are responsible for acquisition of their own supplies. Because of the limited supply of hand sanitizer, it is recommended that you wash your hands at a sink with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds, whenever possible.


Due to the unique hazards and specialized equipment in research spaces, laboratory personnel are responsible for cleaning and disinfection of laboratory areas. Alternatively, Service Master Restore of Charlottesville (434-293-3366 or 434-422-6401) is available to provide professional laboratory cleaning and disinfection services.

Departments should contact the vendor directly to coordinate services and provide a departmental issued purchase order.

EHS has published guidance for laboratories who wish to perform the disinfection themselves.


EHS delivery of alcohol based hand sanitizer and disposable masks has been discontinued.

Supplies can now be ordered through UVA Procurement.

See their COVID-19 Supplies Guide for more information.

Check with your supervisor about any other PPE-related needs.


  • Consider other vendors/suppliers. Laboratories may need to consider ordering outside of Marketplace.
  • Eye Protection:
    • Use reusable safety glasses or goggles that can be sanitized and disinfected in place of disposable items.
    • Use reusable solid chin-length face-shield to protect your eyes, nose and mouth, in place of a disposable face shield and surgical mask.
  • Disposable Facemasks and N95 Respirators:
    • For areas that use disposal N95 respirators, consider the use of Powered-Air-Purifying Respirators or reusable half-face respirators, each with the relevant protective cartridges, in place of disposable respirators.
    • Refer to CDC’s most up-to-date guidance on optimizing supplies of facemask and N95 Respirators here.
  • Gloves:
    • Consider different types of gloves, such as Latex (if no sensitivities/allergies) or Vinyl (if compatible with chemical usage).
    • Try different sizes if it does not compromise the ability to work and handle experiments safely.
    • Try ways to extend glove usage without compromising glove integrity, such as spraying gloves with disinfectant (if compatible). Do not reuse disposable gloves.
    • Increase hand washing frequency, thoroughness, and length of time.


Research as of 19 March 2020 suggests that SARS-CoV-2 can survive up to 72 hours on surfaces, but in most instances, the risk of infection resulting from contact with a contaminated surface is unlikely after a few days. Please refer to this report from Johns Hopkins for more details:

https://hub.jhu.edu/2020/03/20/sars-cov-2-survive-on-surfaces/


Per CDC Biosafety guidance, it is highly recommended to perform any procedures with human samples from suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients in a Biosafety Cabinet(BSC). If a BSC is not available, additional precautions to provide a barrier and reduce risk to personnel should be implemented, such as additional PPE, splash shields, and centrifuge safety cups. Any activities related to SARS-CoV-2 virus isolation or propagative procedures must be performed in BSL3 containment. These activities would require IAR modifications and appropriate IRB approval for patient sample collections.

If you are considering research involving specimens from CoVID-19 patients or with SARS-CoV-2 virus please contact the Institutional Biosafety Committee Coordinator, Paul Skoglund at ps5d@virginia.edu, who will provide guidance on how to proceed with this type of research.


Last Modified: Thursday, 04 March 2021
 
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