When should an adverse event form be submitted?

An adverse event form () must be submitted after ANY UNEXPECTED EVENT that has a negative impact on animal wellbeing occurs.

Hard copy submission of this document is no longer required. Complete forms should be hand signed, scanned, and forwarded to the relevant committee via email. For further information, please see the Animal Ethics Website.

The following are examples of adverse events provided in the Code

“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 have a negative impact on the welfare of the animals.”
What should I do after an Adverse Event has occurred?

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 euthanased.
  2. If you are not the Chief Investigator of the project, you must inform the CI 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, UQBR veterinary services are available to assist.
  5. Notify the Animal Ethics Unit Co-ordinator or the Animal Welfare Consultant Veterinary Officer. The AEU will guide you through the adverse event process and help to ensure the adverse event does not reoccur.

Mrs Jennie Levitt (Acting AEUC)
Ph: 07-336 52713

Dr Michael Uren (CVO)
Ph: 07-336 53617

  1. Organise for a post-mortem to be performed. The post-mortem should be conducted by a person independent of your project and group.
  2. 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.