AAALAC was originally chartered in 1965 by professional organizations interested in improving the care of animals as a means of improving the science conducted with animals. Through a peer review process, AAALAC accredits institutional animal care and use programs. To become AAALAC accredited, an institution must file an application that includes a detailed description of the programs in place to assure compliance with the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals. With this description and site visits, the AAALAC Council reviews programs to determine if they are eligible for accreditation.
Site visits are conducted every three years and reports must be filed annually to document changes in the program, changes in personnel and changes in equipment and facilities. During the site visit, the visitors inspect the facilities, review the program documentation, talk to members of the animal care staff, the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC), selected investigators and responsible administrators.
The AAALAC accreditation process is a peer review process with ever increasing standards reflecting the changes in our knowledge of animal care and use and facility construction and maintenance. Obtaining AAALAC accreditation indicates to the various funding agencies and to the public that an institution is committed to maintaining high standards of animal care and use. For more information on AAALAC go to http://www.aaalac.org/.