The report of the Focus on Alternatives (FOA) workshop, which appears in this issue of ATLA (ATLA 27, 239–245), is just one manifestation of the heightened interest in access to information on the Three Rs that is currently evident in the UK. The driving force for this interest is, of course, the revision to the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986, which took effect in September 1998 and which spells out clearly the requirement for the licence applicant to be aware of all practicable possibilities for implementing any of the Three Rs.a The Home Office Inspectorate has let it be known that one way in which applicants will be required to demonstrate this awareness is by documenting the steps they have taken to inform themselves of such possibilities. The documentation can include a description of literature searches that have been conducted, with details of the search terms used and the databases interrogated, as well as details of other routes of enquiry, for example, searches on the Internet, consultation of mailing list archives, or discussions with colleagues.
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