Semiannual Program Review and Facility Inspection Checklist

Please note that the Semiannual Program Review and Facility Inspection Checklist has been modified in response to comments received in response to the Request for Information (RFI) on Flexibilities for Conducting Semiannual Animal Program Review. These changes are found on page 5 in section 7 “IACUC Records and Requirements.”

  • Reports to U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) or Federal funding agency: Annual report to USDA contains required information including all exceptions –“exemptions” were deleted.
  • Records (PHS Policy, IV.E.): Records of IACUC reviews are maintained for 3 years after the completion of the activity/activities- “study” was replaced with “activity/activities”


Annual Report


The Public Health Service (PHS) Policy on Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals (Policy), section IV.B.1.-2., requires the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) to review the institution's program for humane care and use of animals and inspect all of the institution's animal facilities at least once every 6 months using the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals: Eighth Edition (Guide) as a basis for evaluation. We have developed the Semiannual Program Review and Facility Inspection Checklist to help you conduct your semiannual reviews of programs and facilities for the care and use of animals.

How to use the checklist

This checklist is a tool to help you conduct thorough semiannual reviews. You are not required to use it. We encourage you to amend it as necessary to reflect institutional programs and needs, or develop your own checklist. If the checklist is modified, you should review it periodically to be sure that relevant topics are considered as the animal care and use program changes.

The checklist covers the major topics of the Guide and the requirements of the PHS Policy. The checklist does not replace the Guide, but you should use it along with the Guide. The Guide provides the standards, recommendations, and descriptions of desired outcomes necessary to evaluate and inspect an animal care and use program. We have referenced relevant pages in the Guide and sections in the PHS Policy. We have highlighted topics that are new to this version of the checklist or are indicated as a “must” in the Guide. Endnotes reference specific U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) regulatory requirements that differ from the PHS Policy.

Semiannual Program Review Checklist is the program review section. It consists of these parts:

  • Institutional Policies and Responsibilities
  • Veterinary Medical Care

We suggest that you complete the program review section during an IACUC meeting.

Semiannual Facility Inspection Checklist is the facility inspection section. It consist of these parts:

  • terrestrial animal housing and support areas
  • aquatic animal housing and support areas
  • cagewash
  • aseptic surgery
  • procedure areas, non-survival surgeries, laboratories, and rodent surgeries

Because these are physical aspects of a program that require visual examination, we suggest that you complete the facility inspection section during an inspection of facilities.

Semiannual Program Review and Facility Inspection Deficiencies is a table for you to organize and track information regarding deficiencies, and plans and schedules for correction. This table is not a substitute for the semiannual report to the Institutional Official (IO).  To learn more about the Semiannual report to the IO, visit here.

Download the sample checklist

If you wish to use the sample checklist as a template, click one of the formats below to download.

MS Word 


We are interested in your comments on the usefulness of this checklist and any suggestions for revision. Contact the Division of Policy and Education by phone at 301-496-7163 or e-mail

This page last updated on: Jun 6, 2024
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