Research Reactivation Updates

April 1, 2020 10:15 AM

Two new web-based funding resources have been launched to help researchers pursue funding related to COVID-19:

UMOR COVID-19 Funding Opportunities

Foundation Funding for Faculty

Questions? Contact msgrants@umich.edu.

 

March 31, 2020 2:00 PM

UMOR has established a COVID-19 Research Prioritization Committee to review and prioritize new or modified research projects related to the study of COVID-19. The committee is being lead by Steven Kunkel, Ph.D., Executive Vice Dean for Research, Medical School and Chief Scientific Officer, Michigan Medicine, with Anna Lok, M.D., Assistant Dean for Clinical Research also participating.

Additionally, the Clinical Trials Support Office (CTSO) is supporting current and future COVID-19 clinical trials through their Acute, Critical Care, Surgery, and Transplant CTSU. The office also provides support activities for non-trial COVID-19 research. Questions about CTSO support should be directed to ctsogroup@umich.edu.

Researchers interested in leading COVID-19 projects should complete the COVID-related Research Prioritization Form. Questions? Contact research.covid19@umich.edu.

 

March 30, 2020 3:30 PM

Dear Colleagues,

I’m writing this having just logged off a video call – for many of us, the “new normal” since the COVID-19 crisis started. And over the course of the calls in which I’ve participated, in the background I’ve caught glimpses of football pictures on home office walls, kids’ artwork on refrigerators, and said hello to quite a few family members (including cats and dogs).

You know what else I’ve seen, over the course of these calls and the activities of the last two weeks? The resiliency, creativity, and get-the-job-done attitude of our entire research community. From administrative staff to postdocs to PIs to animal care team members, I continue to be amazed by your passion for the important work we do, in the face of such adversity.

At the Medical School, there are over 11,000 faculty and staff working in 600+ labs and units. On March 18, we asked that super tanker to turn on a dime, with the directive that all “non-critical” research ramp down for closure within 48 hours. YOU have stepped up and activated your own rapid response plan to slim down and/or stop operations. YOU have reduced your work force to essential personnel, and YOU repeatedly asked “what can we do to help?” YOU have responded, and joined the effort to tamp down this threat. In my own lab at BSRB, I asked my staff to shelter in place and be safe with their families as my laboratory, like many of yours, is operating under maintanence-only activities. Collectively, we need to recognize the efforts of our clinical faculty and staff, who are literally operating in the eye of the storm. To this courageous group we send our sincere THANK YOUs.

Yet through all this, there are substories that have come to the surface. Facilities staff tells us that as of last Wednesday, they received over 1,000 car loads of equipment and PPE for the hospital – much of that in the form of donations from our labs. Even in the midst of enormous uncertainty, our research community stepped up to the plate to help our clinical colleagues and the patients we all ultimately serve. I am in awe, and words cannot express the gratitude I feel for all your efforts and I promise to continue to keep you all informed of developments. Please CLICK HERE for our Office of Research updates.

In closing, I can definitively say this – WE ARE WITH YOU. Take care of yourselves, and your families, and together we will continue to demonstrate to the world that U-M Medical School research faculty and staff are truly the “leaders and best.”

Thank you and stay safe,
Steve

Steven L. Kunkel, Ph.D.
Executive Vice Dean for Research, Medical School
Chief Scientific Officer, Michigan Medicine
Peter A. Ward Distinguished University Professor
Endowed Professor of Pathology Research

 

March 30, 2020 1:30 PM

The Grant Services & Analysis team has shared a new, robust NIH webpage that covers all aspects of the implications of COVID-19 public health crisis. The webpage collects all of the NIH notices related to COVID-19 and the impact to performance of research, flexibilities extended, finances, and potential sources of additional funds.
 
Of immediate relevance, all deadlines that were published as previously due March 9 - May 1 are now all due no later than May 1.  You are welcome to submit at any time prior to May 1, and U-M offices will facilitate.  NIH also confirmed that the peer review process is ongoing, though remote.
 
The NIH webpage also features videos that reiterate some of the key NIH decisions-to-date related to the treatment of purchases, salaries, and how effort is spent.  While the highlights are excerpted from the FAQs, NIH stresses throughout their messaging that we are to institutionally handle issues and notify them when able.  Continue to follow the UMOR FAQs (or submit questions) if there is interpretation help needed between NIH Guidance and U-M provided information.  NIH has indicated they will be receptive to sorting through the impacts once the public health emergency passes
 
The Grant Services & Analysis office is prepared to answer and facilitate questions that you may have about any sponsored agreement or treatment of projects.  Email msgrants@umich.edu for assistance.

 

March 27, 2020 1:15 PM

The Animal Care & Use Program (ACUP) event “Continuing Excellence: AAALAC 2020 Expectations & Insights Preparation Meeting” scheduled for Tuesday, March 31, 2020, has been postponed due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation.

ACUP will make the decision to re-schedule at a future date based on the information available at that time. Handouts and informational resources that would have been distributed as part of the March 31 event have been archived on the AAALAC 2020 Site Visit webpage. At this time, ACUP does not anticipate any changes to the existing timeline for the AAALAC 2020 Site Visit, expected to take place this Spring/Summer (e.g., May – July 2020).

A complete list of FAQs about research involving animals is available on the COVID-19 Research Operations webpage. Please refer to this site for evolving guidance and additional information.

Questions or concerns about the AAALAC Site Visit should be directed to the Animal Care & Use Office at acuoffice@umich.edu or (734) 763-8028.

 

March 25, 2020 1:00 PM

Updated as of 4/8/2020 – Updates to be Posted

As the "ramp down" of biomedical and clinical research operations has progressed, research faculty and staff have been seeking clarity regarding how work performed relates to salary charges to grants, faculty discretionary accounts, or how projects ultimately relate to the hours in the COVID-19 benefits bank or regular exception time. Medical School research leadership has compiled the information disseminated by campus offices into guidelines, an example and additional information.   This page will be continuously updated as institutional policies may change to reflect our work environment during the COVID-19 ramp down.

If there are questions about what may (or may not) qualify as activities on sponsored projects or allowability of costs, please review the UMOR and HR FAQ pages, reach out to Sponsored Programs, or contact the Medical School Grants Services & Analysis Office at msgrants@umich.edu.

General Guidelines to Follow for Medical School Departments specifically related to No Available Work:  (additional guidance for other circumstances - such as illness or childcare – is available from the HR website)

  1. If an employee is currently paid on a grant and continues to be able to productively work on the grant remotely at the same level of effort, no change in payroll distribution is needed.  You may wish to review some examples of activities that may be assigned as potential work from a remote location.
  2. If an employee does not have enough work for the allocated time to the project, other work may be identified with the supervisor to fulfill the appointment hours.  Depending on the type of work being done, these hours may require a change in effort distribution / funding source in the HR system (PAR/DBE).  Activity should be reflected and may need to be charged to another grant, faculty funds or Departmental funds dependent on the activity performed and Department policy.
  3. Updated 4/1/2020:  If other work is not identified to fill appointed hours, the hours with “no work” assigned can be paid using the new EPSLA COVID Bank, then the U-M originally established COVID-19 benefits bank, and then replenish the COVID-19 benefit bank if any additional time is needed to reach April 30th.  As the described banks are a university benefit, these hours may be charged against a sponsored project at the same effort distribution work was assigned.  This bank of time only needs to be used when appointed hours are not met due to work not being available.  The bank may be used over an extended period of time, depending on the availability of other work.
  4. If after 4/30/2020, the EPSLA bank has been exhausted, the exception time (PTO or short-term sick / sick from vacation) may be charged to the sponsored project as a university benefit – and used as appropriate to the employee’s situation.
  5. At the point the ELSPA, COVID-19 emergency bank and eligible exception time will be depleted, we advise that there are discussions with the unit to determine the current guidance from the university.   As of 3/25/2020, the university continues to evaluate the situation and review the state mandates relative to the use of both the emergency bank and standard exception time.  Further information will be provided as available.

 

*Definitions of time banks:

EPSLA Bank = Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act provides up to 80 hours of paid sick time from 4/1/2020 through 4/30/2020 (current end of the Michigan executive order)

COVID-19 = COVID-19 Emergency Bank provides up to 80 hours of paid time and may be replenished if additional time is needed through 4/30/2020.

The university is committed to evaluate the situation and provide updates if further instruction is needed into May.  Information will be provided as available.

 

These guidelines are consistent with the information on the following websites:

UMOR:  https://research.umich.edu/covid-19
Campus HR:  https://hr.umich.edu/2019-novel-coronavirus-covid-19 and  https://hr.umich.edu/paid-time-information-during-covid-19-pandemic
Michigan Medicine HR:  https://hr.medicine.umich.edu/pay-benefits/timekeeping-pay/time-reportin...

Example

Research Technician, Full Time 40 hours per week with access to Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act (EPSLA) bank, 80-hour COVID emergency bank (replenished through April 30th), 40 hours VAC, 80 hours Short-term Sick

 Note: For the example, it is assumed there was some use of the COVID-19 emergency bank in March, before the introduction of the EPSLA bank on 4/1/2020 in order to illustrate the change.  Otherwise, the EPSLA bank should be used first beginning 4/1/2020.  Currently, in May, the use of standard paid time off should follow published University of Michigan guidelines.

 

Remember to complete requisite PAR / DBEs as necessary when moving employees to new activities.

 

Timekeeping codes:

REG is regular hours paid, each week represents where the 40 hours of salary was charged too. 

PEL is Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act Bank of hours

RPN is remote pay not worked. 

SCK is short-term sick – Under a quarantine, short-term sick is an acceptable bucket, and can be used when the workplace is closed. See the Sick Time Pay SPG for additional information.

PAN is Pandemic and used by campus to see hours of impact.

*Final coding is best guided by the HR FAQ website.  Campus HR FAQHospital HR FAQ

 

HR Timekeeping

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



Clarification: Impact of the Office of Management & Budget, M-20-17 Memo dated March 19, 2020

This guidance is included in the instructions above.   OMB announced that:  Awarding agencies may allow recipients to continue to charge salaries and benefits to currently active Federal awards consistent with the recipients' policy of paying salaries (under unexpected or extraordinary circumstances) from all funding sources, Federal and non-Federal.

 

Use of Regular Paid Time Off

Both Medical School and Hospital employees are provided paid time off banks (PTO, sick, vacation) that may be used based on the individual employee’s situation.   Supervisors should work with the employee, in conjunction with HR descriptions, on the most appropriate codes to use when needed.
 

If there are questions about what may (or may not) qualify as activities on sponsored projects or allowability of costs, please review the UMOR and HR FAQ pages, reach out to Sponsored Programs, or contact the Medical School Grants Services & Analysis Office (msgrants@umich.edu).

 

 

March 24, 2020 3:30 PM

Many faculty and staff have expressed concern over the identification of productive remote work during the ramp down of research labs, clinical studies, and the displacement of employees from campus.   The Medical School Office of Research and Associate Chairs for Research have compiled a list of activities that investigators may consider completing or deploying to staff that are in remote work situations. Completing any of these activities could be done without use of the established COVID emergency bank.

CLICK HERE for the full list.

We have bolded categories of potential project-specific activities that may be completed and allow the effort to continue to be charged to the project grant as active engagement on the sponsored project.  Those not in bold are activities that actively engaging the employee, but may need effort adjustments to reflect department activity assignment.  In general, if the work would be completed in furtherance of the aims of the project, it is allowed to be charged to the sponsored project.   If the activity is too generalized to be beneficial on a specific project, it should be charged to the department accounts.

Please work with your department on accurate effort reflection in the HR systems and questions may be directed to msgrants@umich.edu

 

March 23, 2020 2:30 PM

From the U-M Office of Research on central campus, all investigators who wish to carry out new or modified research projects related to COVID-19 that involve human subjects, basic laboratory or animal research, or require significant university resources to stand up, must submit a COVID-related Research Prioritization Form to UMOR’s COVID-19 committee.

Please direct questions regarding this process to research.covid19@umich.edu.

 

March 23, 2020 1:00 PM

IRBMED has shared that on March 18, 2020, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued guidance for industry, investigators and institutional review boards conducting clinical trials during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The FDA recognizes that challenges during the pandemic may lead to "difficulties in meeting protocol-specified procedures, including administering or using the investigational product or adhering to protocol-mandated visits and laboratory/diagnostic testing. FDA recognizes that protocol modifications may be required, and that there may be unavoidable protocol deviations due to COVID-19 illness and/or COVID-19 control measures". The guidance provides considerations for ongoing trials and a recommendation for sponsors, clinical investigators, and IRBs to establish policies and procedures to manage study conduct and protect trial participants if such policies and procedures are not already in place.

Of note regarding documentation for missed protocol-specified procedures, the FDA urges that "It will be important to capture specific information in the case report form that explains the basis of the missing data, including the relationship to COVID-19 for missing protocol-specified information (e.g., from missed study visits or study discontinuations due to COVID-19)".

CLICK HERE to access the full FDA guidance, or CLICK HERE for more updates from IRBMED. Questions? contact irbmed@umich.edu.

 

March 23, 2020 11:15 AM

In their most recent update, the Central Biorepsotitory (CBR) announced that until further notice, they are no longer receiving regular shipments of biospecimens.  However, certain projects are operating with critical status, and the CBR has made arrangements with those teams to continue to receive shipments from them.
 
CBR critical staff will continue to manage all controlled temperature units. Activities include ensuring delivery of liquid nitrogen to cryogenic freezers, supply of compressed gas as backups to mechanical freezers, and local and remote monitoring of temperatures. As a reminder, all critical systems in CBR are connected to the emergency power grid at NCRC, should we experience a power failure in primary systems.

CLICK HERE to learn more about the Central Biorepository's response to COVID-19, or email cbr.requests@umich.edu with questions.

 

March 20, 2020 1:45 PM

Due to COVID-19, the Clinical Trials Support Office has worked across business partners to ensure uninterrupted support to research study work conducted at University of Michigan. The following resources have been developed to support this work:

How to Get Help

  • ServiceNow ticket is submitted to OnCore CTMS team for PI or non-study coordinator access needing limited study coordinator duties
    • PREFERRED METHOD:  ServiceNow - Submit a Ticket (level 2 login) - include, "OnCore" in the subject line
    • ServiceNow phone #: 734-936-8000 (Option 2) - ask service desk include "OnCore" in the subject line
  • For studies in the Oncology Clinical Trials Support Unit, please reach out to the Oncology CTSU at CTSU-Oncology-IT@med.umich.edu

 

March 19, 2020 1:15 PM

Effective March 16, 2020, the standard Urgent Amendment process is being temporarily suspended until further notice. Urgent amendments should follow the procedures outlined in the guidance below.

1. Urgent Modifications made to Eliminate Apparent Immediate Hazards to Subjects

If a study team determines it is necessary to make protocol modifications to eliminate apparent immediate hazards to subjects, these modifications can be made without prior IRBMED approval but must be reported to the IRBMED within 5 calendar days via the ORIO reporting mechanism. NOTE: Additional reports to FDA may be needed if the U-M PI is also IND/IDE holder. Contact MICHR MIAP at michrmiap@med.umich.edu for assistance.

In the ORIO title, indicate “COVID Protocol change without IRBMED approval” along with any other indicators related to change. For additional information and instructions on submitting these modifications, CLICK HERE for IRBMED Guidance.

NOTE: The pause initiated by the U-M Office of Research (UMOR) does not need to be reported to IRBMED via an eR submission (AME, ORIO, or SCR).

2. Time-sensitive Modifications Not Impacting Subject Safety

If there is no apparent immediate hazard to subjects but the intended change is time-sensitive (changes to lab criteria to enroll a subject, changes to the study team, timing of study visit, changing from in-person visits to telephone visits, etc.), researchers must obtain IRB approval before any changes in the study procedures can be implemented. Consider the strategies below for these situations. These protocol changes must not impact the risk level to the subjects and thus must be considered minimal risk.

a. Standard eResearch Amendment using “COVID Time-Sensitive” or “COVID Urgent” in the amendment title. Use this method for time-sensitive minor modifications when no other amendment is in process.

b. NEW COVID-19 PROCESS – eResearch ORIO using the AE/ORIO application for minor modifications that are time sensitive if an unrelated amendment is in progress. Indicate “COVID time-sensitive change” in the ORIO title and select “Protocol Deviation” as the sub-type. Modifications must be minor and qualify for expedited review according to regulatory criteria.

For additional information and Examples of urgent modifications NOT eligible for approval via the eResearch ORIO process, CLICK HERE for IRBMED Guidance.

Questions? Contact irbmed@umich.edu.

 

March 18, 2020 5:15 PM

Earlier today, Rebecca Cunningham, M.D., U-M Interim Vice President for Research, sent a message to the research community that announced the following:

"In an effort to protect the health and safety of the University of Michigan community amid the rapidly changing COVID-19 situation, researchers across all three campuses should ramp down all noncritical research laboratory activities by 5 p.m. on Friday, March 20. We will continue to assess the situation at regular intervals.

Faculty, staff and students must ramp down all on-campus laboratory research activities, with the exception of research related to COVID-19. The university will maintain minimal access to laboratories so that critical activities, including the maintenance of animals, unique reagents, and essential equipment and materials, along with research related to COVID-19, can continue. Research and scholarship (e.g., analyzing data, writing and reviewing manuscripts, preparing presentations, developing new grant proposals, convening online discussions with students and lab staff, etc.) that can occur remotely should continue."


Please visit the UMOR Research Operations web page to learn more details about Dr. Cunningham's announcement. Additionally, on that page under the tab labeled "Research Facilities/Laboratory Safety," you'll find downloadable links for:

These are very serious times, and the health and safety of our researchers and staff is of utmost importance. If you have questions, visit the Medical School Office of Research's COVID-19 webpage, or please don't hesitate to reach out to the Medical School Office of Research at ummsresearch@umich.edu.

 

March 18, 2020 4:45 PM

Below you'll find the status of each unit of the Medical School Office of Research as we prepare for ramping down biomedical research operations at the U-M.
 

BIOMEDICAL RESEARCH CORE FACILITIES
In an effort to protect the health and safety of the University of Michigan community amid the rapidly changing COVID-19 situation and in compliance with directive from the UMOR, Biomedical Research Core Facilities (BRCF) will switch from normal to emergency operations. As part of emergency operating procedures, all non-essential activities will be suspended, keeping only critical activities operational. Please visit our website, contact Core Directors for updates regarding specific core access, or contact us at brcf-umms@umich.edu.
 

CALENDAR REVIEW & ANALYSIS OFFICE
The Calendar Review and Analysis Office will remain open and conduct business consistent with the most current guidance from the university. We will handle immediate issues that arise on a case-by-case basis and follow prevailing guidance. In recognition of the benefits of social distancing in slowing the potential spread of COVID-19, CRAO staff are working remotely. CLICK HERE for our staff directory that includes email and phone numbers, or contact us at cr2-ao@med.umich.edu.


CENTRAL BIOREPOSITORY
In compliance with the directive from UMOR that all labs should ramp down operations, the Central Biorepository (CBR) will switch from normal to emergency operations, no later than March 20, 2020.  Non-essential activities will be suspended, keeping only critical activities operational,  including:

  • Maintenance of a safe work environment
  • Control of in-transit biospecimens
  • Maintenance of biospecimen temperatures
  • Maintenance of the LabVantage database

CBR has already made arrangements to receive most, if not all,  in-transit biospecimens and accession them into the appropriate long-term storage environment.  Thank you for your partnership in communicating your needs and working with our team to send samples to CBR.  If you have not yet made arrangements for CBR to receive your samples, please do so now, so that we may receive and accession them by March 20, 2020.
 
CLICK HERE for more details about CBR operations relative to the COVID-19 situation, or contact us at cbr.requests@umich.edu.
 

CLINICAL TRIALS SUPPORT OFFICE
The Clinical Trial Support Office (CTSO) and its units will remain open and conduct business consistent with the most current guidance from the university. We will handle immediate issues that arise on a case-by-case basis and follow prevailing guidance. Please don’t hesitate to contact us with questions at ctsogroup@umich.edu.


DATA OFFICE
In alignment with the University of Michigan’s policy encouraging telecommuting, the Data Office team is currently working from home. We will continue to be available by phone and email, individually and as a unit (click here: https://doctrjira.med.umich.edu/servicedesk/customer/portal/1) so you should continue to experience the service you have come to expect across all our service areas. Please watch return emails in the event a specific member of the team is out, and if needed, redirect your inquiry here: https://doctrjira.med.umich.edu/servicedesk/customer/portal/1 to be assisted.  
 

FAST FORWARD MEDICAL INNOVATION
The Fast Forward Medical Innovation team is currently working from home, in alignment with the University of Michigan’s policy encouraging telecommuting. We will continue to shepherd the biomedical research enterprise's business development, commercialization, and innovation education remotely, so you should not experience any disruption in the services we provide, but we encourage you to contact us via email with any concerns. CLICK HERE for our staff directory that includes email and phone numbers, or contact us at ffmioffice@umich.edu.
 

GRANT SERVICES & ANALYSIS
Grant Services & Analysis team members are available by phone and email, individually and as a unit (msgrants@umich.edu or click here) so you should continue to experience the service you have come to expect across all our areas. Please watch return emails in the event a specific member of the team is out, and if needed, redirect your inquiry to msgrants@umich.edu.
 
Questions? Please contact msgrants@umich.edu.
 

IRBMED
IRBMED encourages study teams to monitor the IRBMED website for any changes in workflows and for additional guidance (especially IRBMED procedures for urgent amendments and study conduct during the research pause).  The UMOR website also contains important responses to frequently asked questions that relate to clinical research at Michigan Medicine.  Check that website frequently as questions are updated daily.   General questions for IRBMED can be submitted to irbmed@umich.edu. The email inbox will be monitored during normal business hours and over the weekend. Responses will be provided within one business day.
 

ULAM
The Unit for Laboratory Animal Medicine (ULAM) will maintain mechanisms for providing continued daily care to all animals housed on campus in the event of a natural disaster or other events that may interrupt normal business, including the COVID-19 situation. This includes  veterinary medical care; assessment of animal health and wellbeing; provision of food, water and clean cages; and maintenance of appropriate environmental conditions. All animal care staff (veterinarians, veterinary technicians, husbandry and housing, etc.) are considered mission-critical staff and report to work to ensure the continued health and well-being of all animals. Questions? Contact us at ulam-questions@umich.edu.

 

March 18, 2020 4:45 PM

Medical School Facilities has posted a webpage dedicated specifically to FAQs that might develop around the ramp down of biomedical research operations. CLICK HERE to learn more about:

  • Emergency contacts
  • Utilities such as power and water will remain on
  • Continuity of services such as cleaning, maintenance, and dining
  • Delivery and receiving
  • And more.

Questions? Contact Medical School Facilities at med.school.facilities@umich.edu.

 

March 18, 2020 4:15 PM

The Grant Services & Analysis team wants to remind our research community to review the "Costs During the COVID-19 Health Crisis" section on the UMOR Research Operations webpage, which addresses topics like:

  •     U-M's recommendations on the approach to charging of salaries when no work is performed due to COVID-19
  •     Getting reimbursed for the costs incurred during the pause on NIH-funded human subjects research
  •     Whether a grant will a grant pay for project-related costs, such as animal per diem, incurred during a ramp down
  •     And more.

Please don’t hesitate to contact us at msgrants@umich.edu if you have questions.

 

March 18, 2020 3:15 PM

On March 16, 2020, all individuals on an active animal use protocol received an email from the Animal Care & Use Program Leadership Team outlining several important updates and recommended changes for how PIs and their laboratories should organize research projects involving animals amid the rapidly changing COVID-19 situation.

In a follow-up email to the entire animal care and use community on March 17, 2020, U-M's Attending Veterinarian provided additional clarification on several pieces of guidance, including:

  • Continuity of routine daily husbandry and veterinary care
  • Ongoing experiments using animals
  • Cessation of breeding as it pertains to commercially-available species/strains
  • Animal identification
  • Placing orders for animals and other medications/supplies
  • ULAM Training Core classes
  • IACUC protocol reviews
  • And many more.

Please review this information carefully to determine appropriate actions on how to best safeguard your research during this time. Ongoing guidance, information, FAQs, and other updates regarding research involving animals will be posted to the UMOR Research Operations page.

Perhaps more than most, we are accustomed to maintaining our poise and carrying out our responsibilities during unusual circumstances. Please know that our entire animal care team remains committed to supporting your research, your staff, and the animals within our care, however possible. With this in mind, please continue to reach out to our team with any questions and concerns; we are here to help safeguard and support your research activities.  Please don’t hesitate to connect with questions at ulam-questions@umich.edu.

 

March 16, 2020 2:00 PM

GRANT SERVICES & ANALYSIS

Grant Services & Analysis team members are available by phone and email, individually and as a unit (msgrants@umich.edu, or CLICK HERE) so you should continue to experience the service you have come to expect across all our areas. Please watch return emails in the event a specific member of the team is out, and if needed, redirect your inquiry to msgrants@umich.edu.
 
Additionally, the team wants to remind our research community to check out the "Proposal Submission and Award Management" section of the UMOR Research Operations webpage. It is being kept constantly up-to-date, with information about topics including:

  • Proposal deadline extensions
  • How the NIH is responding to the COVID-19 situation
  • What happens if the COVID-19 situation slows or halts progress on a project
  • And more.

Questions? Please contact msgrants@umich.edu.
 

CALENDAR REVIEW & ANALYSIS OFFICE

The Calendar Review and Analysis Office will remain open and conduct business consistent with the most current guidance from the university. We will handle immediate issues that arise on a case-by-case basis and follow prevailing guidance.
 
In recognition of the benefits of social distancing in slowing the potential spread of COVID-19, CRAO staff are being encouraged to work remotely.
 
The University has released temporary restrictions on human subjects research in an effort to minimize the risk of contracting or spreading COVID-19 in human participant research interactions and to preserve personal protective equipment for clinical care. You can visit the UMOR Research Operations page under "Research Involving Human Subjects" to learn the full details.

CLICK HERE for our staff directory that includes email and phone numbers, or contact us at cr2-ao@med.umich.edu.


DATA OFFICE

In alignment with the University of Michigan’s policy encouraging telecommuting, the Data Office team is currently working from home. We will continue to be available by phone and email, individually and as a unit (CLICK HERE) so you should continue to experience the service you have come to expect across all our service areas. Please watch return emails in the event a specific member of the team is out, and if needed, redirect your inquiry here: https://doctrjira.med.umich.edu/servicedesk/customer/portal/1 to be assisted.  
 

FAST FORWARD MEDICAL INNOVATION

The Fast Forward Medical Innovation team is currently working from home, in alignment with the University of Michigan’s policy encouraging telecommuting. We will continue to shepherd the biomedical research enterprise's business development, commercialization, and innovation education remotely, so you should not experience any disruption in the services we provide, but we encourage you to contact us via email with any concerns. CLICK HERE for our staff directory that includes email and phone numbers, or contact us at ffmioffice@umich.edu.


EVENT CHANGES

Changes regarding events hosted or co-sponsored by units within the Medical School Office of Research.

The IRBMED team has sent an update indicating that all their courses will be moved to BlueJeans and some dates will change. Registered participants will be notified via email, and registration will remain open. Visit the IRBMED website for their latest news, or contact rayn@umich.edu with questions.

The Fast Forward Medical Innovation "fastPACE Final Presentation" event scheduled for March 20 has been changed to a virtual event. CLICK HERE for details and login information as they are made available.
 
The "Pharmaceutical Industry: Trends, Opportunities, & Challenges" event featuring Paul Hudson, CEO of Sanofi, and scheduled for April 2 has been postponed and will be rescheduled at a later date. CLICK HERE for details as they are made available.

The "International Mock Board Examination and Laboratory Animal Seminar Series" scheduled for April 15-17 has been postponed. CLICK HERE for more details.

The "Fifth Annual Science of Enrichment Symposium" scheduled for April 22 has been postponed. CLICK HERE for more details.

 

March 14, 2020 10:00 PM

(The following message was sent to research faculty on Saturday, March 14, 2020)

Colleagues,

While the University of Michigan has not officially reduced laboratory-based operations, we underscore the fact that we support our faculty, staff, and learners, who manage/work in our research laboratories, in practicing an abundance of caution during these uncertain times. We would like you to seriously consider working with your laboratory members to minimize the amount of time that people are in the laboratories. For example, we suggest that you limit the number of people in the laboratory at one time, and consider postponing elective activities or experiments that are not time-sensitive.

There are a number of concerns that our research, faculty, learners and staff are presently dealing with, including the use of public transportation to get to work, as many of these individuals do not have parking passes, providing care for children no longer in school, and individuals and/or their family member(s) who may have underlying conditions that would put them at higher risk. Please consider developing protocols that would potentially have people work in shifts or on alternate days to accomplish the work that must be done. A suggestion is to allow individuals in the lab to arrange personal interactions such that they can maintain a comfortable 6-foot distance from each other. If they have to be in the lab at the same time, perhaps they can separate themselves in some way and keep total laboratory time to a minimum. We trust that you, as seasoned researchers, will know what will work best for your own laboratory. As for upcoming Ph.D. defenses, please consider limiting in person public attendance at these events and instead offer them via Bluejeans. Furthermore, we would like you all to support office staff to largely work from home on a rotating schedule, using established guidelines.

We realize that messaging around the expectations for students, learners, and employees can be challenging to interpret for those with blended roles. As a university, we place a particularly high value on our learners and the learning environment. Although much of what they do may at times be referred to as ‘work,’ it is really learning in the work environment. We realize how disruptive this is to your operations, but we are also convinced that we need to set an example and limit exposures to each other, as we try to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and the potential burden to our colleagues and to our academic medical center. The news from our Italian colleagues is sobering and social distancing appears to be a best practice to limit the spread of the virus. While our research is critically important, our people are more so.

Thanks in advance for doing all you can to allow your laboratory staff, post-docs, faculty and students to work from home as much as possible, while ensuring mission critical work still can still get accomplished. Perhaps the silver lining will be an abundance of papers and grants that can be written during this time.

Please let us know if we can help with specific situations. We want to embrace these current challenges with COVID-19 as an opportunity to bring our community together around shared value and common purpose as we care for each other.

Sincerely,

Steven L. Kunkel, Ph.D.
Executive Vice Dean for Research, U-M Medical School
Chief Scientific Officer, Michigan Medicine
Peter A. Ward Distinguished University Professor
Endowed Professor of Pathology Research

Carol R. Bradford, M.D., M.S., FACS
Executive Vice Dean for Academic Affairs, U-M Medical School
Chief Academic Officer, Michigan Medicine
Professor of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery

 

March 13, 2020 3:00 PM

IRBMED has posted information at a Study-Specific Planning Guidance web page, including info about how to submit study-specific questions to the IRBMED staff owner identified for the study in eResearch.  IRBMED is committed to responding to matters associated with human participant research as the COVID-19 circumstances evolve. We encourage study teams to monitor the IRBMED website for any changes in workflows and for additional guidance. Questions can be submitted to irbmed@umich.edu.  This email will be monitored during normal business hours and over the weekend. Responses will be provided within one business day.