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Occupational Health Program

UT Arlington is required by the Guide for Care and Use of Laboratory Animals (“the Guide”) and it’s Federal Assurance with the Office for Laboratory Animal Welfare (DHHS/NIH) to implement a comprehensive occupational health and safety program (OH&S) for animal handlers/researchers. In addition to regulatory requirements, UT Arlington is committed to maintaining a quality research program while protecting the health and safety of its faculty, staff, and students.

To comply with the applicable regulations, each person that works with or handles animals for teaching or research, or those that may come into contact with animals or animal housing areas as a condition of their employment or student status, are required to complete the elements of the OH&S program, which include:

Immunization Requirements

UTA and IACUC policy require that individuals working with animals receive a tetanus immunization. The immunization must not be older than 10 years, or you will have to be re-immunized. Please email the Occupational Health Nurse, Dolores Aguilar, at for a list of places where a tetanus immunization can be obtained. 

Proof of tetanus immunization (shot record) must be provided to the Office of Research Administration (ORA) through the Occupational Health Nurse before access to the Animal Care Facility can be granted. Information on how to send in the immunization record is provided below.

Occupational Health & Safety Training

New enrollees will complete this training to obtain authorization to work with animals. This is a onetime requirement. For detailed instructions and access to the training material, please click here.

Medical Evaluation

The purpose of a medical evaluation is to obtain the health history of an individual as it relates to working with/near animals, assess the working conditions or environment that they will be exposed to, and determine if any additional procedures or practices will be necessary to protect the health and safety of the individual.

All animal researchers, both currently active and new, are required to complete the Medical Health Questionnaire for review by the Occupational Health Nurse, Ms. Dolores Aguilar, RN, MS, APN; an experienced health professional with expertise in occupational health and the proper handling of confidential health information who has oversight over this process.

Instructions for completion and submission of Medical Health Questionnaire and Immunization Record:

1. Obtain a tetanus immunization. This immunization is offered by UTA Health Services on campus, or you may submit a record from your personal physician or another source. The tetanus immunization must be less than 10 years old. During the medical evaluation process, you may be requested to obtain additional immunizations based on a risk assessment of your health history and work conditions.

2. Complete the Medical Health Questionnaire (MHQ).

3. Scan the Medical Health Questionnaire and a copy of your Tetanus Immunization Record and email them to the Occupational Health Nurse at Please enter “OHS FORMS” in the subject line. Paper forms will not be accepted.