New Guidelines for Research and COVID-19 at Iowa State

Dear Colleagues,

Please find attached a memo from the office of Vice President for Research, which provides guidance and instruction on managing research operations under the current situation with COVID-19. We are asking all CVM research labs to follow the guidelines and plan research activities accordingly. Specifically:

  1. The VPR’s office has updated guidelines on research-specific response and preparation for COVID-19. The information can be found through this link. It is a living document and the information will be updated continuously. We ask researchers, particularly PIs, to review the information on the web site and in the attached memo, and plan laboratory operations accordingly.
  2. Research labs must put in place procedures and protocols to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission. The primary ways we are accomplishing this is social distancing and good hygiene.
    1. We are highly encouraging you to allow lab personnel to work at home, and do tasks such as writing a manuscript, reviewing literature, analyzing data, or conducting any other functions that don’t need a wet lab. This is the preferred and we would encourage all personnel (faculty, staff, post docs, graduate students, other students) to work at home if possible. All laboratory meetings should be conducted online.
    2. If working in the laboratory is critical and necessary, PIs should limit the number of people in a given time and optimize work schedules of lab personnel to allow for social distancing.
  3. To prepare for potential curtaining of laboratory operation, each lab should identify critical functions/equipment (if there are any) that must be continued without interruption and develop a contingency plan accordingly. The plan should include key lab members who are required to manage these functions. PIs should provide this information to their department chairs who will then forward the information to the college’s research office.
  4. PIs should anticipate possible disruptions when planning new animal studies or major experiments for the next few weeks. If possible, PIs should postpone these types of studies, especially animal studies. 
  5. Each lab is required to develop a communication plan and a chain of command. The chain of command should be three deep (if possible) and include names and cell phone numbers. The information should be submitted to depart chairs and then forwarded to the college’s research office.

I would ask that you share this email with everyone (Staff, post-docs, graduate students, undergraduate workers) in your lab.

Thank you for your cooperation in keeping our community safe!

Dan Grooms
Qijing Zhang