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Archive: 1999 Session - Appendix 21

1999 Session of the Research Group of the Standing Technical Committee of EuFMD



FMD Biosecurity Procedures


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A review of the different aspects of the FMD biosecurity procedure in our Center is made. The review include the following aspect procedures: the personal, engineering control, operation and safety procedure in side of the high security area, wast management and emergency.

The procedure to work with FMD virus in our Center are summarized in the following points:


    • Quarentine
    • Staff induction
    • Medical Matters
    • Entry and exit from the Center and laboratories
    • Entry and exit from HCA
    • Visitors and short term vorkers
    • Primary barriers
    • Secondary barriers
    • Movement of personnel within the area
    • Taking materials from the area
    • Demoring materials from the area
    • Biological safety cabinets
    • Transportation of biohazars materials




1. Personnel Procedures



  • For a period of three days after being within the High Containment Area (HCA), staff may not have contact with susceptible animals and avoid places where such animals are held.

  • Susceptible animals to avoid are pigs, cattle, horses, sheep, goats, domestic fowl or poultry, small laboratory animals (mice, rats, rabbits...), and any other ruminants, equines or swine.

  • The places that must be avoided include animal farms, sale barns, stockyards, research animal facilities, packing houses, zoos, circus menagerie, and any other animal exibits such as fairs.

Staff induction

  • New staff at CISA are required to complete a formal induction and training program on biosafety.

  • They will be asked to sign a "Biosafety Regulations for New Staff Members" form.

  • New staff members are allocated a "buddy" for the firsts few days or weeks until the appointee is familiar with CISAÎs layout and operating procedures.

Medical Matters

  • Medical checking is offered on an annual basis to all staff.

  • Hepatitis A and B immunizations and tetanus immunization are arranged for staff who work in high risk environments (eg. work with animals, outdoor duties....).

  • First aid cabinets are located throughout CISA. A group of staff members have received specialized training in emergency techniques.

Entry and Exit to the Center and laboratories

  • Staff are issued with access cards.

  • Access to the site is through a main gate which is under 24 hour control with closed television cameras and a gatekeeper who keeps a computarized record of all visitors and vehicles entereing and leaving the premises.

  • To gain access to the HCA, one must pass through a second control area.

Entry to and Exit from the HCA

  • Staff working in the HCA wear clothing supplied by CISA and no personnal items except glasses may be taken into the Area.

  • Staff must change clothes completly on entering and shower on leaving the premises.

  • When entering some sections withing the HCA (eg. animal rooms, necropsy room) it is necessary to change cloths and shower before moving to another area.

Visitors and Short Term Workers

  • Gatehouse security staff is instructed to refuse entry to persons without prior arrengement.

  • Visits to the HAC require the aproval of CISA Director.

  • Visitors will be asked to sing a "Safety Requirements and Affidavit for Official Visitors" form.

  • They are not permitted to wander about the site unattended, and they must be supervised by a nominated member of staff.

  • Short term workers (eg. visiting scientists) are subject to similar regulations to visitors. Such persons will be expected to be familiar with the relevant procedures on biosafety.




2. Engineering Controls


Primary barriers

  • Primary barriers

Secondary barriers

  • The HCA is of a concrete structure and all exterior windows are bulletproof. Every pipe and duct corresponding to each service (compressed air, vacuum, gas, steam) is individually sealed in order to guaranty complete airtightness.

  • Emergency doors, air lock doors, access doors to any animal room, necropsy room, incinerator, are furnished with a penumatic airtight system.

  • The walls, floors and ceilings are covered with epoxi paint.

  • The interior of the Area is negative to atmospheric pressure, and the negative pressure increases as we approach the highest risk areas. Animal rooms assigned to experiments with viruses transmitted by aerosols have two different levels of negative pressure, one between the corridor and the shower and one between the shower and the animal room itself.

  • The HCA is of a concrete structure and all exterior windows are bulletproof. Every pipe and duct corresponding to each service (compressed air, vacuum, gas, steam) is individually sealed in order to guaranty complete airtightness.

  • Input and extract fans can be interlocked so that the failure of an extract fan shuts off input air and prevents reflux of contaminated air to the exterior.

  • TA central computer controls all the engineering parameters: temperature, pressure sensors, fire alarms, on/off situation of the equipment, air conditioning.....

  • In addition to the emergency electric generator, an UPS guarantees uninterrupted power supply.




3. Operation and safety procedure in the high containment area


Movement of personnel within the Area

  • Personnel must no enter areas they are not authorized to go.

Taking materials into the Area

  • Food may be carried in a disposable wrapper or container through the changing rooms, and stored in the canteen.

  • Biological materials enter via the Biosafety Office through the laminar flow pass box, in order to maintain an inventory of the biohazards used in the site.

  • Store supplies and any other goods enter via the General Store through the air lock and the decontamination chamber.

  • Animals and animal related articles enter through the Animal Facilitites air lock.

  • Transport vehicles with animal supplies must be decontaminatred before leaving CISA premises.

Removing materials from the Area.

  • Biological materials will not be allowed to leave the HAC without express permission of CISA Director and after being completed the "Transmission of Biological Material from CISA" form, as well as any other special requirements (eg. an import permit or other authorization).

  • The biological materials are placed in airtight containers, superfically decontaminated and, once outside, they are packed following international regulations.

  • Decontamination for removal of non-biological materials is by one of the following methods: incineration, autoclaving (steam and ethyleneoxide sterilization), formaldehyde fumigation....

  • The removal of papers is very excepcional, and when it is done is through the ethylen oxide autoclave. Data may be removed via computers, fax machine or image treatment equipment.

  • Laundering is done within de HCA. Clothing is never transported outside the Area.

Biological Safety Cabinets.

  • All work with potentially infectious material must be performed in a class II cabinet.

On-site transportation of biohardous materials.

  • Approved transport containers should be used when carrying infectious material from place to place within the HCA.



4. Waste Management

  • A pathological incinerator is available within the HCA for animal carcasses and all the burnable waste. The incinerator complies with current safety standards and is fitted with a afterburner.

  • Solid no-burnable waste is removed through the steam autoclave or fumigation with formaldehyde.

  • The liquid waste is heat treated before disposal, after the regulation of pH. The process is provided with an computer monitoring system.



5. Emergency Procedures

  • CISA has developped emergency plans regarding the following: medical emergencies, personal exposures (biological, chemical, radiological), spills (biological, chemical, radiological, inside a biosafety cabinet.....), fire, etc.

  • All staff members are appropiately informed and regularly trained in emergency evacuation procedures with special attention being given to security requirements in cases of fire.