A UQ Unexpected Adverse Event Form (DOC, 82 KB) must be submitted after any unexpected event that may have a negative impact on animal wellbeing.

Completed forms should forwarded to the relevant committee via email.

Examples of unexpected adverse events provided in the Animal Use Code

As stated in the Australian Code for the Care and Use of Animals for Scientific Purposes (8th edition, 2013):

“An unexpected adverse event may result from different causes, including but not limited to:

  • death of an animal, or group of animals, that was not expected (e.g. during surgery or anaesthesia or after a procedure or treatment),
  • adverse effects following a procedure or treatment that were not expected,
  • adverse effects in a larger number of animals than predicted during the planning of the project or activity, based on the number of animals actually used, not the number approved for the study,
  • a greater level of pain or distress than was predicted during the planning of the project or activity,
  • power failures, inclement weather, emergency situations or other factors external to the project, or
  • activity that has a negative impact on the welfare of the animals.

After an adverse event

If an adverse event occurs during the course of your project the following course of action is required:

  1. Alleviate pain or distress in the animal/s. This must take precedence over completion of the project. If pain or distress cannot be alleviated, the animal should be euthanised.
  2. If you are not the Chief Investigator of the project, you must inform the Chief Investigator immediately.
  3. You should involve the Officer in Charge of the animal house as soon as possible.
  4. If none of the above are available and you require assistance, UQ Biological Resources veterinary services are available to assist.
  5. Notify the Animal Ethics Unit Coordinator or the Veterinary Officer. The Animal Ethics Unit will guide you through the adverse event process and help to ensure the adverse event does not reoccur.
  6. Organise for a post-mortem to be performed. The post-mortem should be conducted by a person independent of your project and group. Download the post mortem/necropsy template here. (DOCX, 55.8 KB)
  7. Submit an adverse event form to the AEC.  This should occur as soon as possible after the event has occurred, even if the results from the post-mortem are not yet available.