Research Safety

The goal of the University of Minnesota's Research Safety Program is to assure that research is carried out in a way that:

  • prevents accidents and minimizes exposure to hazardous agents and conditions;
  • prevents degradation of the environment through responsible waste management and active waste reduction;
  • conserves resources and minimizes losses; and
  • achieves regulatory compliance.

Research in the Department of Otolaryngology is carried out in diverse locations and can involve a range of hazardous materials and activities. Federal, state and local regulatory constraints on the conduct of research are extensive and are expanding. This research safety program provides the Department of Otolaryngology with a course of action to supervise and maintain safe, compliant and responsible research.

Lab Safety Training

Every Department of Otolaryngology employee who either works in or oversees a laboratory or research area must complete appropriate federal and state mandated safety training.

New Employees

New Employee Safety Training consists of 3 tutorials designed to provide new employees, faculty and students with their required safety training. This training is available in person or online. DEHS's in-person laboratory safety training is offered once a month and may be registered for online.  Employees who work with human blood, bodily fluids, or infectious agents also need to complete biological materials training. Register online for in-person training given in conjunction with new employee training or complete the web-based module.

Current Employees

Current employees are required to attend annual refresher training. Refresher training is available as a seminar given by the Research Safety Officer annually. The seminar includes a review of pertinent chemical safety and hazardous waste practices, as well as any changes in laboratory safety policies and updates in audit procedures.

Lab Safety Plan

The Department of Otolaryngology Laboratory Safety Plan describes policies, procedures, equipment, personal protective equipment and work practices that are capable of protecting employees from the health hazards in laboratories. This Plan is intended to meet the requirements of both the federal Laboratory Safety Standard, formally known as "Occupational Exposure to Hazardous Chemicals in Laboratories" and the Minnesota Employee Right To Know Act (MERTKA). The Laboratory Safety Plan is updated annually and available to each laboratory as a pdf download.

Research Safety Officer

The Department Research Safety Officer (RSO) works with DEHS, department administration and principal investigators to ensure our department is in compliance with all standards and regulations, and to deal with any imminent health hazards.

Research Safety Officer:
Beverly Wuertz
221B Lions Research Building

Research ethics at the University of Minnesota

We are committed to protecting research participants, upholding ethical standards, and improving our practice at every step of our work.