Phase 2 - Shared Housing and other changes to AMS

On this page: Shared Housing | CCAC Report & Associated Questions | Protocol Editor Workflow temp change | "Restricting to Project Codes" question for new protocols | Other Changes

The Animal Management System (AMS) replacing the old Darwin software as a protocol and facility management tool, is being rolled-out in 3 phases:

Phase 1: The majority of the modules went live on May 3, 2022. 

Phase 2: The shared housing feature is scheduled for July 19 2022 and it also contains the CCAC AUDF report & new questions in the protocol form. Other features will be added.

Phase 3: The additional protocol workflow change is to be included in the regular a-tune release, sometime in August 2022.

Shared Housing - Linking the home site (where the protocol is approved) and the host sites (where some or all the animals housed in animal facilities not under the home site's jurisdiction)

What's different? New table for animal numbers in the 'Number of Animals' protocol section; There is an error message asking to specify the site(s) used and number of animals even if no changes are being made to the numbers in amendments and Annual Reviews; PI can log in host site web page to order animals there; PDF copy of the home protocol available to the host site; Number of animals used reported on the home CCAC AUDF only, not the host's report.

The shared housing feature (multi-site) will go live on July 19 2022. It will now ask the PI (and coordinator) to specify the site or sites being used and to supply the maximum number of animals per site. Once the protocol or amendment is approved, if there are animals in the other sites, the PI will then be able to log into the other site's AMS web page and order animals to be received at that site. The species and maximum number of animals stipulated in the protocol for that site will be applied. A pdf copy of the complete protocol will be copied to the other site's web page for reference purposes. Note that the PI cannot amend or renew from the other site's web page, only from the home web page where the protocol was originally approved. Sites are affiliated entities which include: McGill University, the Neuro (MNI), the RI-MUHC (MGH and Glen), the Douglas, LDI of the JGH and the Shriners.

After July 19: When the PI or Protocol Editor starts an amendment or Annual Review, an error message will appear dictating that a modification is needed to the protocol section 'Number of Animals' when trying to save or submit to the FACC. This is normal, the software has added a table in the protocol section 'Number of Animals'. The table will be in the bottom of the page and apply to the grand total, not just to a specific study segment. You will get this regardless if you have shared housing or not.

- NOT SHARED HOUSING - If not using an animal facility outside the FACC's jurisdiction, just type the maximum animal numbers to your site's row per species. Note that if your protocol was migrated from the old software and you have used animals so far this year, the number of used animals will be displayed, per species, in the last row as 'Utilized (external system)' - This number will have to be deducted from the numbers you are typing in the previous rows so that the grand total matches your grand total in the number calculation for the entire protocol. This table applies to the entire protocol, not just one Study Segment. Also note that your home site is automatically checked. Not using shared housing means none of the other sites' boxes are checked.

- SHARED HOUSING - If using an animal facility outside the FACC's jurisdiction (for example, a McGill PI using the Douglas facility), please check the box next to the host site (the home site will be automatically selected). Then type the maximum number of animals per site, per species. Note that those numbers should be deducted by the numbers in the last row which has the number of animals already used up to date for protocols migrated from the previous software and having used some animals up to now. 

IMPORTANT: We do not know how many animals are to be in which site so this information is NOT in AMS currently. The PI must amend the protocol in order to be able to order animals at the other site and for the other site to have a pdf copy of the protocol. The PI must create an amendment to modify the 'Number of Animals' protocol section, to check the host site's box and adjust the animal numbers appropriately. Only one day after that amendment is approved, will the PI be able to log into the other site's AMS web page and order animals - The 'push' of the home protocol to the host protocol is done overnight  and not immediate. The changes can be done via an Annual Review too.


COPY OF THE PROTOCOL TO THE HOST SITE: The protocol is approved in one site (called Home site). The site not under the jurisdiction of the home site gets a copy of the approved protocol. The protocols that are 'pushed' to a host site will appear like this to the host users as described below. It is not instantaneous - overnight the software checks for changes on multi-site (shared housing) protocols and pushes the information to the host site. All amendments and renewals will also be pushed to the host site by the next day when approved.

The site's acronym in the protocol number will specify which home site it comes from. In this example, the RI-MUHC site sees 2 protocols with a number starting with 'MCGL' which means it came from the McGill site. These protocols cannot be amended nor renewed via the RI-MUHC site (only McGill's). They also cannot be reviewed by the FACC of the host site within AMS prior to approval. 

The 'pushed' protocols are displayed as an approved protocol to enable the host users (in this example the RI-MUHC users) to get access to the pdf version of the approved protocol. If you click on the Document file, it will be empty - this is normal. The information is inside the pdf of the complete approved protocol which is automatically attached to the protocol File (the paperclip icon).

To get the pdf copy of the complete approved protocol of the other site, mouse right-click the paperclip icon. Select the option 'Edit attachment':

A popup window will appear. The document will be a hyperlinked file. Click on the File name and it will either download to your computer or display in your browser depending on your settings.

The pdf copy of the approved protocol:

CCAC Report and Associated Questions

What's different? New questions added for the CCAC 'keywords' and 'Purpose of Animal Use'  in the protocol section 'General Information' that will feed into the annual CCAC AUDF report; New CCAC AUDF report.

In the protocol form, there is a new subsection called 'CCAC Report Information' and it contains the new 'Keywords' and 'Purpose of Animal Use' questions as well as the new question 'Short Protocol Description for the CCAC'. Those are the ones to use. Note that temporarily, both the old 'Keywords' and 'Purpose of Animal Use' questions will still appear but do not remove or edit the text please. The answers to the old questions will be copied into the new questions in the coming months - once done, the old questions will be hidden for new protocols. 

Old questions mention not to use anymore (the words 'Do not use this question anymore' will only appear on new protocols, not currently existing ones):

For those with the required permission, the CCAC annual report (AUDF) will now be available. You are to select the 'Global Canadian Animal Use Data Form' in order to have the number of animals used at host facilities in the home CCAC report. The animal numbers are not doubly reported - they only appear in the site's report that has approved the protocol. If you select the report called 'Canadian Animal Use Data Form', it will only have the number for the home site, no numbers of animals used in the host sites. Note that only protocols that had animal activities (orders, breeding, transfers) will be displayed. Any protocol that had no animals being used during the period will not show up in the report. 

Protocol Editor Workflow temp change

What's different? The Protocol Editor will not be able to submit for PI signature via the software (temporarily) but will have to tell the PI via other means than the software; In August, the Protocol Editor will be able to submit for the PI's signature and the PI will be able to send it back to the Protocol Editor for more changes if needed via the software.

We want the PI to be able to send a protocol or Annual Review or amendment back to the Protocol Editors for more changes if needed (from the status 'For Signature' to 'For PI Revision'). Currently, the PI cannot do this but must involve the ACO or FACC Coordinator to request that this be done. 

This change will have to be in 2 steps:

On July 19: Removal of the Workflow button for Protocol Editors. Once they have finished with a protocol, they must talk, call or email their PI to ask them to log into AMS, review and sign off to submit to the FACC. This is only for a period of one month.

In August: Workflow button now available to the Protocol Editors. The protocol or amendment or Annual Review can be sent back and forth between the Protocol Editors and the PI until the PI is ready to sign off. This means the protocol document status can go back and forth between 'For signature' and 'For PI Revision'.

'Restricting to Project Codes' question for new protocols

What's different? When creating a new protocol, there is a new popup window asking if you want to restrict to the project codes.

When creating a new protocol, the 3rd popup window gives you the option to restrict to specific project codes ((funds, accounts)) if you want.

By checking that box, the protocol's activities will be restricted to the use of the project code or codes you select in this popup. Important: At least one project code must be selected when enabling this rule otherwise the project codes will not be available and will ultimately cause issues in other applications/modules. Protocol activities include animal orders, tasks and breeding.

If not checking the box, all available fund codes linked to the PI will be available for protocol activities (such as animal ordering). 

If checking the box, a new item is added called 'Project code(s):'. Click the tiny ' + ' sign on the right of the empty field to get the list of your available project codes.

A small popup window will appear with a list of available codes under the PI's profile. Check one or more project codes as you prefer. When finished, click the 'Apply' button.

You have now restricted the activities related to this protocol to the project code(s) you have selected. You can now click the 'Save and open document' to get your new protocol form to complete.

Other Changes

Protocol Number's site acronym: Currently, every new protocol created only has the next number available in a 5 digit number. The site's acronym is manually added by ACO. On July 19, it will be done automatically. Old Darwin numbers have a 4 digit protocol number. 

Glitch for the selection of Teams in animal orders: When ordering animals, it's possible that you get an error message saying that a Team has to be selected even if there is one displayed. If this happens, just choose the blank option and select back the Team you want. We hope this will be fixed in the coming month.

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