University Health and Safety is charged with providing leadership, resources, and services to protect the environment, and to ensure the health and safety of the University's students, faculty, staff, patients, and visiting public. University Health and Safety supports a safe, healthy and sustainable University environment through its work.
Its six departments work cooperatively with each other and with our clients to provide comprehensive safety services with the ultimate goal of fostering a culture of safety throughout the University of Minnesota System.
UHS Departments and Divisions
Department of Biosafety and Occupational Health
Occupational Health Division
The Occupational Health team is a part of the Biosafety and Occupational Health Department (BOHD), and has system-wide responsibility for protecting the health of all employees, students, volunteers, and visitors who participate in activities related to the University's missions of teaching, research, and service. We do this by helping employees understand and meet the requirements of our established programs, maintaining accurate compliance records, and working with our contracted occupational health provider to facilitate medical services and consulting.
The Biosafety team is part of the Biosafety and Occupational Health Department (BOHD) and is responsible for system-wide coordination and oversight of biosafety, biocontainment, and biosecurity, which includes the administration of the federally-mandated Select Agent program. The Biosafety team serves as subject matter experts and provides the University community with technical guidance, training, and resources to promote a culture of safety in biological research, teaching, and diagnostic activities. This work is risk assessment-based, and involves the interpretation of federal, state and University regulations and guidelines.
Building Code Department
The University of Minnesota has its own Building Code Department (BCD) within University Health & Safety. We contribute to the UHS mission of advancing a safe University community through regulatory compliance with the Minnesota State Building Code (MSBC) and the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) rules related to environmental health, food, pools and lodging. The University’s Building Code Department is the “authority having jurisdiction” to administer the codes system-wide in accordance with the rules, regulations, and laws as adopted by the State of Minnesota. The department's mission is to protect the health, welfare and safety of University of Minnesota students, employees and visitors in the built environment through education and code enforcement. The BCD has system-wide code jurisdiction on all University campuses or property owned or leased by the University.
Department of Emergency Management
Emergency Management helps the University prepare for, respond to, recover from, and reduce the effects of disasters. Services include All-Hazard's planning, training, exercises; building emergency plans; continuity of operations; Safe-U notifications, campus-wide emergency alert system, tone alert radios; special event command and coordination; emergency medical services and AEDs.
Department of Environmental Health and Safety
Environmental Compliance Division
The Environmental Compliance Division manages the University’s environmental protection programs. These responsibilities and programs include assessment of soil contamination, stormwater management, wastewater discharges, groundwater, underground/above-ground storage tanks, air emissions, chemical security, spill prevention control and countermeasures (SPCC) planning.
The program is intended to implement the Board of Regents Policy on Sustainability and Energy Efficiency and the Administrative Policy on Environmental Management. These policies and the Administrative Procedure on Storm Water Compliance to meet the Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) permit.
Industrial Hygiene Division
The role of the Industrial Hygiene (IH) division is to protect the health and safety of students, staff and the research community at the University of Minnesota. The IH staff evaluates hazards from the chemical, physical, biological and ergonomic stressors we may be exposed to in classrooms, in the workplace or in laboratories. We do this through environmental monitoring and analytical methods to determine the extent of worker exposure and then employ engineering and work practices to control the potential health hazards.
Regulated Waste Division
The primary role of the Regulated Waste program is to pick up, transport, process, and dispose of chemical waste generated by the University of Minnesota in a safe, compliant, efficient, and customer-focused manner.
Workplace Safety Division
The Workplace Safety Division is a work unit within the Office of University Health and Safety. The role of the Workplace Safety Division is to foster a positive safety culture and facilitate continuous improvement in the area of occupational safety and health throughout the University community. We do this by way of written occupational safety and health programs; safety training and educational opportunities; safety leadership; and integration of safe and healthful work practices into university operations as a normal course of work.
Workplace Safety Division areas of expertise include electrical safety, logout/tagout of energy sources, confined space entry, employee fall protection, hearing conservation, hazard communication, powered industrial trucks, agricultural and pesticide safety, as well as, other occupational safety and health related topics.
Laboratory and Research Safety Division
The role of the Laboratory and Research Safety program is to influence and facilitate continuous improvement in the area of safety performance in the research community. We do this by developing management systems, tools, and metrics that drive the integration of safe work practices into normal university operations.
Health Emergency Response Office
Health Emergency Response ensures that health emergencies affecting the University community are addressed in a timely, efficient, and effective manner. Activities include infectious disease outbreak planning and response, mass casualty victim and community assistance planning and response, U of M Medical Reserve Corps, and training and education.
Department of Radiation Safety
To support the (prudent, secure, safe, careful, judicious) use of radioactive materials in research, clinical, and industrial applications throughout the University of Minnesota system and select customers of the Fairview/MHealth, and University of Minnesota Physician corporations.
Radiation Producing Equipment
To support the (prudent, secure, safe, careful, judicious) use of radiation producing equipment in research, clinical, and industrial applications throughout the University of Minnesota system and select customers of the Fairview/MHealth, and University of Minnesota Physician corporations.