McMaster University

McMaster University

Project-Based Biohazard Approval (BHA)

All projects where the support funds are administered through Hamilton Health Sciences or St. Joseph's Healthcare Hamilton are to be reviewed by those organizations. Please click on the links above to contact the correct administrator.

Individual biohazard projects will be evaluated using the Biohazard Approval form. The Biohazard Approval form allows for a detailed review of all aspects of the project and takes into account all participating researcher's individual BUPs, in addition to external researchers.

Please download the form here.

When to Use the Form

The Biohazard Approval form is to be used for all administrative processes (HRS/ROADS/MILO etc) which require project-based approval i.e. documentation that requires to have Project Title/Funding Agency/Start and End Dates specifically listed. These include but are not limited to:

  • protem approval for application-stage project applications
  • approval for funded-stage project applications
  • approval for sponsored projects
  • approval for unsponsored projects
  • approval for self-funded projects
  • approval for MTAs to receive items that specifically require 'project based approval'


When NOT to Use the Form

Use the decision tree below to determine when NOT to use the form, and generate your own documentation.

Courses and camps do not require to use this form. All required information is already captured in a suitable manner for review within online BUP portal.



Frequently Asked Questions


I am unsure that my project is applicable under RMM 600. What do I do?

If you are unsure if your project is applicable, please complete the applicability assessment found here.

How the Form is Used?

Once completed and submitted to the Biosafety Office, the information in the Biohazard Approval form is compared to each investigator's BUP to determine if the pathogens/materials are already on the existing BUPs. If not, the amendments will automatically be made to the relevant BUPs.

The project is reviewed by the PBAC and is approved if all BUPs are in good standing.

Please be advised of the following time delays:

  • Creation and review of a new BUP if necessary – 2-3 months; this includes filling in forms, acquiring the required training and committee review of the BUP; required only once; highly dependant on the size of the inventory
  • Review of amendments if necessary – 1 month
  • Training or update training for all staff if necessary – 1 week to 1 month
  • Laboratory Audit if necessary – 2 hours for audit, 1-2 months for preparation and post-audit follow-up


I am not a biohazard lab, but I collaborate with biohazard labs. What do I do?

You are to complete the BHA form above which allows for inclusion of your biohazard collaborators. This form requires each BUP to be listed. You may complete the project information and PI sections and then pass the form to your collaborators to complete their individual BUP sections which are numbered.

I collaborate with other biohazard and/or non-biohazard labs at outside insitutions. What do I do?

Please add their details into the numbered section. There are provisions for 'non-McMaster'. We require this information for record keeping and due diligence purposes.

How is the BHA Different from the BUP?

Notably, the BHA numbers are YYYY-NN, for example 2019-052. By contrast, BUP numbers are BUP-NNN, for example BUP-152. Many BHAs exist on a PI's BUP.

The Biohazard Approval (BHA) form is used for per-project approvals. The BUP is meant to capture all biosafety and biosecurity related information and personnel information per-PI. The BUP will follow the PI for the duration of their employment at McMaster University. The "expiry date" listed on the BUP is the 4-year comprehensive review of the entire BUP by PBAC. There is no need to re-submit or re-do any forms as all informaton is retained in a database. You can consider the Biohazard Approval Form as a mechanism to 'amend' grant information to your BUP. The expiry date of your BUP is the expiry date of all of your grants for in-house purposes - this allows for only one followup per year on behalf of the finance offices.

The expiry date on the BHA, is the most currently expiring BUP on the BHA. When the most currently expiring BUP is renewed, the next most currently expiring BUP becomes the expiry date for the BHA. This is all automated and requires no action on behalf of the PIs. The BHA expiry lists are sent to the funding offices monthly.


I work in a funding or ethics office and I have been given a BUP number insted of a BHA number. What do I do?

Please forward this webpage to the faculty member. AREB is the only ethics board which accepts a BUP number. HiREB, HRS, MILO and ROADS all require a BHA number.


Updated 10-May-2019

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