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Vital Status and Outcomes of COVID-19 / VISION study (PIs Fischer and Wohl et al, UNC-Chapel Hill)

The SARS-CoV-2 / COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent recovery from the pandemic has been, and continues to be, an incredible challenge. Since 2020, the NC Collaboratory has undertaken numerous COVID-related research and development projects as mandated by the NC General Assembly. The direct legislative funding to the Collaboratory to lead these efforts totals $74 million (see subsection (23) of Section 3.3 of Session Law 2020-4, subsection (2) of Section 1.6 of Session Law 2021-3, and Section 8.12 of Session Law 2021-180).

As part of the legislatively mandated studies referenced above, the Collaboratory “shall facilitate among various entities research and activities related to monitoring, assessing, and addressing the public health and economic impacts of COVID-19, including, but not limited to, (i) best practices and strategies to maximize resources and achieve a comprehensive research response to COVID-19….” As part its COVID-related portfolio, the Collaboratory considers the Viral Status and Outcomes of COVID-19 study (also known as the VISION study) being led by Drs. William Fischer and David Wohl and others at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine a priority with a need to be carried out expeditiously to address an emerging or immediate threat to public health, safety, and welfare.

Therefore, by the authority granted in Article 31A of North Carolina General Statute (NCGS) of Chapter 116-255 subsection (c)(3) and (c)(6), the Collaboratory is invoking the exemptions from Articles 3, 3A, 3B, 3C, 3D, and 8C of NCGS Chapter 143, NCGS 143-129, and NCGA 116-31.10 for the Fischer/Wohl VISION study. This exemption applies to the purchase of apparatus, supplies, material, services, or equipment as well as capital improvements necessary to carry out this research and development project.

This written justification will be posted on the Collaboratory’s website (collaboratory.unc.edu) for the duration of this project in compliance with Article 31A of NCGS 116-255(c)(3).

Jeffrey D. Warren, PhD
Executive Director
North Carolina Collaboratory
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) have been classified by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as emerging compounds. Evidence exists that many of these compounds (e.g., PFOA and PFOS) pose a potential threat to public health, safety and welfare. The NC General Assembly (NCGA), beginning in 2018 (see subsections 13.1.(f) through (l) of Session Law 2018-5), mandated the NC Collaboratory (Collaboratory) to carry out extensive research activities on PFAS compounds, including GenX. This legislative mandate was extended and expanded upon in sections 8.10.(a) through (g) of Session Law (SL) 2021-180.

In addition to the Collaboratory’s broader PFAS research mandates, the NCGA specifically calls for the development of a technology, or technologies, that utilizes water filtration or other chemical or physical technologies to remove or mitigate the presence of PFAS, including GenX, from water supplies where it is present (see subsection 8.10.(d) of SL 2021-180). The Collaboratory considers these research and development projects a priority with a need to be carried out expeditiously to address an emerging or immediate threat to public health, safety and welfare.

Therefore, by the authority granted in Article 31A of North Carolina General Statute (NCGS) of Chapter 116-255 subsection (c)(3) and (c)(6), as amended by section 2.16.(a) of SL 2022-6, the Collaboratory is invoking the exemptions from Articles 3, 3A, 3B, 3C, 3D, and 8C of NCGS Chapter 143, NCGS 143-129 and NCGA 116-31.10 for the Coronell/Leibfarth ionic fluorogel water filtration media project. This exemption applies to the purchase of apparatus, supplies, material, services or equipment as well as capital improvements necessary to carry out this research and development project.

This written justification will be posted on the Collaboratory’s website (collaboratory.unc.edu) for the duration of this project in compliance with Article 31A of NCGS 116-255(c)(3).

Jeffrey D. Warren, PhD
Executive Director
North Carolina Collaboratory
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill