International Biosafety Month-2021

October is the American Biological Safety Association (ABSA) International’s Biosafety Month. Launched in 2013, this initiative was created to promote awareness of biosafety, biosecurity, and biorisk management as a profession and to help those who work with or around biohazards understand how biosafety precautions work to protect them, their colleagues, and the environment from biohazard risks.

Yale EHS is promoting International Biosafety Month electronically this year through this website, which will be updated anytime new innovative or pertinent information is identified through October 2022, when it will be updated with the new theme for next year’s version.  EHS will email announcements regarding updates through the EHS Integrator registration portal.

For more information, visit the ABSA International Biosafety and Biosecurity Month website.

ABSA International Biosafety Month

Innovation in Biosafety and Biosecurity

ABSA International is proud to announce the 8th anniversary of Biosafety and Biosecurity Month in October 2021. The theme for the 2021 Biosafety Month is: ”Innovation in Biosafety and Biosecurity.”

Please also take time to visit the ABSA International homepage, where vast biosafety resources are available for you.  

EHS has selected new and existing biosafety and biosecurity information and has linked them in categories relevant to a researcher’s experience level, or by topics pertinent to different groups. Please click on the any category below to get started.

Important Biosafety Messages for All Researchers

Laboratory infections have been recorded since scientists have documented research with microorganisms. 

The Overview of Laboratory Acquired Infections provides links to the published references and includes a brief summary of the biosafety breakdowns that contributed to the infections.

The two references below highlight very important messages regarding laboratory acquired infections.

80% of all published lab acquired infections have an unknown or indetermined route of exposure. Pike RM. 1979. Laboratory-associated infections: incidence, fatalities, causes, and prevention. Annu Rev Microbiol: 33: 41 -66.

In the remaining lab acquired infections where the route of exposure is known, in roughly 80% of these cases, the contributing factors have been tied to a break down in biosafety work practices. Phillips, G.B. 1965b. “Causal Factors in Microbiological Laboratory Accidents and Infections.” Fort Detrick, Frederick, MD, Misc. publ. 2. AD 615-012N, (National Technical Information Service, Springfield, VA.) in Harding, A.L. and Byers, K.B.  2006. Laboratory-Associated Infection,” p. 53-77. In Fleming, D.O. and Hunt, D.L. (ed.), Biological Safety: Principles and Practices, ASM Press, Washington, DC.

Helpful Information For Principal Investigators and Lab Managers

Biosafety Guidance for New Researchers

In addition to your introductory laboratory biosafety and chemical safety courses, these links provide additional visual demonstrations of how to protect yourself from biohazards.

Additionally, the Researcher Competence Verification Form (and training and emergency procedure links above), will help both the principal investigator and lab manager ensure that new employees are provided with baseline information that is needed to begin to work with biohazards in the lab.

Advanced Biosafety Resources

Field Safety and Outdoor Work Guidance Information