RELEASE DATE:  May 27, 2004

RFA NUMBER:  RFA-HD-04-015  - (Reissued as RFA-HD-08-027)

EXPIRATION DATE:  August 10, 2004

Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)
National Institutes of Health (NIH)

National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) 




o Purpose of this RFA
o Research Objectives
o Mechanism of Support
o Funds Available
o Eligible Institutions
o Individuals Eligible to Become Principal Investigators
o Special Requirements
o Where to Send Inquiries
o Letter of Intent
o Submitting an Application
o Peer Review Process
o Review Criteria
o Receipt and Review Schedule
o Award Criteria
o Required Federal Citations


The National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) is 
interested in research in pediatric critical care, and has issued a Request 
for Applications (RFA-HD-04-004 
for the Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network to support 
approximately six Core Clinical Centers in clinical, translational, and 
descriptive research to investigate the safety and efficacy of treatment 
and management strategies in the care of critically ill children. As well, 
the Network will support research to enhance understanding of the 
pathophysiology of critical illness in childhood and its relationship to 
morbidity and disability in childhood. The Network will be funded by 
Cooperative Agreements, and will include a Data Coordinating Center to 
provide statistical expertise, assistance in study and protocol design, 
and analysis for Network trials and studies.

Additionally, the Data Coordinating Center (DCC) will support a registry of 
pediatric critical illness so that accurate epidemiology and trends in 
pediatric critical care may be tracked nationally. The resources of the DCC 
will be used to collect and analyze data, and the professional staff will 
collaborate in study selection and design with the Network Steering Committee. 
Data collection from non-Network sites or consortia, as well, will be managed 
by the DCC upon instruction of the Network Steering Committee. Areas of 
interest include all major areas of pathophysiology in pediatric critical 



NICHD is interested in clinical and basic research in pediatric critical care, 
especially as it relates to outcomes for the growing population of children 
with special health care needs. In an attempt to respond to the need for well-
designed clinical trials, and translational and descriptive studies in 
pediatric critical care medicine, NICHD is establishing a Collaborative 
Pediatric Critical Care Research Network. Support of approximately six 
Clinical Centers in clinical, translational, and descriptive research to 
investigate the safety and efficacy of treatment and management strategies in 
the care of critically ill children is envisioned. The Network will consist of 
approximately six clinical centers and a data coordinating center. Applicants 
for the Data Coordinating Center should read RFA-HD-04-004, announcing the 
Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network (PCCR Network) at to learn 
more about the scope, structure, and function of the PCCR Network.

Modern critical care medicine has introduced a vast array of technological, 
pharmacologic, and strategic treatment plans, enabling children once thought 
to be beyond the reach of modern medicine to survive after life-threatening 
illness or injury, or the repair of serious congenital anomalies. These 
modalities of treatment have evolved with little scientific evaluation, 
because of both the acuity of the situations in the pediatric intensive care 
unit (PICU) and the rapid development of pediatric critical care. 

Indeed, because of the urgency attending critical illness in childhood, a new 
therapy or modality may be tried empirically; if the child's condition 
improves, this may rapidly evolve into a standard critical care practice, 
expected and demanded by practitioners, families, and patients. Scientific 
study of these practices, especially as linked to outcomes in childhood, has 
been inadequate to date. It is envisioned that the application of the 
scientific method to the evaluation of pediatric critical illness and practice 
in the PCCR Network will be greatly enhanced by the Data Coordinating Center 
solicited by this RFA.


The list below outlines some of the areas to be addressed by the Network, but 
is neither exhaustive nor exclusive: 

o traumatic and non-traumatic brain injury; 

o pulmonary physiology, particularly disabling pulmonary function as a 
residual of critical care in childhood or the neonatal period;

o pediatric critical traumatic injury of any organ system from any modality; 

o sepsis in previously healthy and immunocompromised children; 

o use of newer modalities of mechanical ventilation, both invasive and 

o children who have received organ (solid and bone marrow) transplantation; 

o acute illnesses of childhood superimposed on the underlying medical 
fragility of special health care needs; 

o the rapid transfer of new technologies to pediatric critical care medicine; 

o strategies to reduce the cost and preserve the quality of critical care for 

o innovative methodologies in circulatory, renal, and pulmonary advanced life 

o multiple organ system failure and dysfunction (MOSF) of any etiology 
(infectious, non-infectious, unknown);

o cardiopulmonary arrest, particularly studies evaluating critical care 
interventions and decision-making, and developmental outcomes;

o near drowning, especially studies of the issues surrounding decision making 
in withdrawal of support;

o morbidity and disability in survivors of pediatric critical care, including 
studies of family adaptation and the impact of critical illness in childhood 
on siblings and family dynamics; 

o studies of the impact of neonatal complications and pathophysiology on the 
incidence and course, throughout childhood, of critical illness;

o pulmonary physiology, especially in the unique context of critical illness 
in childhood;

o gastrointestinal function and immunonutrition.
The scope of activities envisioned for the DCC in support of these and other 
Network activities includes:

o Expert assistance in the design, conduct, data analysis, and data management 
of collaborative clinical, translational, and descriptive research projects in 
pediatric populations, ages birth to 21. This includes the special pediatric 
issues of consent.

o Utilization of electronic technology to design and produce smooth data 
collection systems, so that data is directly entered into the DCC system at 
the Network clinical centers; modification and re-design of such systems as 
appropriate for new and emerging study protocols.

o Provision of appropriate and capable leadership and expertise in 
biostatistics, developmental study design, data management, data analysis, and 
project management, including, but not limited to, staff and site training and 
quality assurance procedures. 

o Provision of research support activities in designing data collection 
modules, operational and procedure manuals, quality control systems, and an 
electronic mail/communications system for Clinical Center Principal 
Investigators and Research Nurses.

o Provision of meeting and conference support, including logistical support 
services for multi-center research, and communication facilitation.

o Organization and conduct of multi-site monitoring activities in conjunction 
with the NICHD Project Scientist.

o Provision to NICHD of regular reports of enrollment and the allocation of 
resources, and appropriate response to changing work needs, new protocols, and 


This RFA will use the NIH Cooperative Research Project Grant (U01) award 
mechanism. As an applicant you will be solely responsible for planning, 
directing, and executing the proposed project. The anticipated award date is 
April 01, 2005.

The NIH U01 is a cooperative agreement award mechanism in which the Principal 
Investigator retains the primary responsibility and dominant role for 
planning, directing, and executing the proposed project, with NIH staff being 
substantially involved as a partner with the Principal Investigator, as 
described under the section "Cooperative Agreement Terms and Conditions of 


The NICHD intends to commit approximately $500,000 in total costs [Direct plus 
Facilities and Administrative (F & A) costs] in FY 2005 to support up to one 
new grant in response to this RFA.  An applicant may request a project period 
of up to five years and a budget for total costs of up to $500,000 in the 
first year and up to $1 million in subsequent years. Although the financial 
plans of the NICHD provide support for this program, awards pursuant to this 
RFA are contingent upon the availability of funds and the receipt of a 
sufficient number of meritorious applications.   


You may submit an application if your institution has any of the following 

o For-profit or non-profit organizations 
o Public or private institutions, such as universities, colleges, hospitals, 
and laboratories 
o Units of State and local governments 
o Eligible agencies of the Federal government  
o Domestic institutions/organizations
o Foreign institutions are not eligible to apply

The need for continuous and active communication among sites and with the 
NICHD dictates that only U.S. institutions are eligible to apply.

Organizations should have experience in functioning as a statistical 
coordinating center for multi-center research, including randomized controlled 
trials and observational studies of both a medical and a psychological nature. 


Any individual with the skills, knowledge, and resources necessary to carry 
out the proposed research is invited to work with his/her institution to 
develop an application for support.  Individuals from underrepresented racial 
and ethnic groups as well as individuals with disabilities are always 
encouraged to apply for NIH programs.   

Qualifications of the Principal Investigator should include:

o The Principal Investigator, and other staff, must have appropriate expertise 
and capability in biostatistics, data management, data analysis, and project 

o The Principal Investigator must possess a doctoral degree in an appropriate 
field and be willing to commit at least 75 percent effort on Network 
activities. In exceptional cases, the PI may plan to devote less than 75 
percent time, but should provide a detailed plan as to how they he/she will  
provide adequate leadership and technical support to the project, especially 
during the first two years of the Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care 
Research Network.


Minimum Requirements for the Data Coordinating Center

o Staff must be prepared to cooperate effectively in all Network functions 
with NICHD and the clinical centers.

o The DCC must demonstrate prior experience as a data coordinating center in 
multicenter studies in children or other vulnerable populations during the 
previous five years.

o The DCC must have the ability to assist in designing protocols, data 
collection forms, manuals of operation, and data collection systems, including 
distributed data entry.

o The DCC must have experience in developing and maintaining data quality 
control systems.

o The Data Center must have the capacity to generate monthly reports on 
subject enrollment for several concurrent studies, quarterly reports on 
enrollment and clinical center performance (including efforts to reallocate 
study resources), appropriate reports for the use of the Network Data Safety 
and Monitoring Committee meetings, and special reports as required below.

o The DCC must demonstrate successful experience in assisting clinical 
investigators in preparing manuscripts for publication.

o The DCC must have experience in providing logistical services for 
multicenter clinical trials, e.g., assuring the appropriate preparation and 
delivery of study medications to the Clinical Centers.

o The DCC must provide evidence of superior management capability as evidenced 
by the capacity to:  (a) estimate appropriate and reasonable resources needed 
for individual projects in its role as the Data Center for multicenter 
research, (b) manage those resources efficiently during the research, (c) 
adjust the assigned resources as the work changes qualitatively and 
quantitatively during the research, (d) report these resource allocations to 
NICHD periodically, and (e) sub-contract with outside organizations in order 
to supplement its own resources, as needed.

Cooperative Agreement Terms and Conditions of Award

The following Terms and Conditions will be incorporated into the award 
statement.  They are to be followed in addition to, and not in lieu of, 
otherwise applicable OMB administrative guidelines, HHS grant administration 
regulations at 45 CFR Parts 74 and 92, and other HHS and NIH grant 
administration policies.

The administrative and funding instrument used for this program will be the 
U01, an "assistance" mechanism (rather than an "acquisition" mechanism), in 
which substantial NIH scientific and/or programmatic involvement with the PI 
is anticipated during performance of the activities. Under the cooperative 
agreement, the NIH purpose is to support and/or stimulate the PI's activities 
by involvement in and otherwise working jointly with the PI in a partnership 
role; it is not to assume direction, prime responsibility, or a dominant role 
in the activities.  Consistent with this concept, the dominant role and prime 
responsibility resides with the PI for the project as a whole, although 
specific tasks and activities may be shared between the awardee and the NICHD 
Project Scientist.  Facilities and Administrative cost (indirect cost) award 
procedures apply to cooperative agreements in the same manner as for grants.  
Business management aspects of these awards will be administered by the NICHD 
Grants Management Branch in accordance with HHS and NIH grant administrative 

1.  Awardee Rights and Responsibilities

The awardee is expected to cooperate with the clinical investigators at the 
Network Clinical Centers, and with the Project Scientist and Program Officer 
and other participating NICHD staff, in the design and conduct of protocols, 
analysis of data, and reporting of results of Network research. Systems for 
data collection, analysis, coordination, and quality assurance are essential. 
Required data summaries will be provided to the Network Steering Committee, 
the subcommittees, NICHD, the Data Safety and Monitoring Committee, and others 
as determined by the Steering Committee. Logistical services, including 
provision of study drugs, collecting and storing of biological fluids, and 
other supplies for the conduct of research, may be required.

The Awardee will agree to accept the participatory and cooperative nature of 
the collaborative research process. The Data Coordinating Center grant will 
provide research support services to the Clinical Centers comprising the 
Network. These will include establishment and maintenance of a centralized 
information management system to help the Network sites, the Steering 
Committee, and the NICHD to edit, store, analyze, publish, and disseminate 
results from the shared research. The DCC will serve as a central repository 
for data on all collaborative Network projects. The DCC will assist the NICHD 
Project Scientist, Project Officer, and the Steering Committee in monitoring 
research progress, and will work to ensure data integrity, accuracy, security, 
and accessibility.

Specifically, the DCC will:

o Support the activities of the Advisory Board, Steering Committee, and the 
Data Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB) through provision of materials and 
documentation, meeting planning and logistics, and conference call 

o Provide advice on study design, data collection, data analysis, and 
publication development in all Network research projects.

o Prepare, design, and disseminate operations manuals, data collection forms, 
databases, and results reporting summaries for Network projects and protocols.

o Compile for the Advisory Board, the Steering Committee, the DSMB, the NICHD 
Project Scientist and Project Officer, site visit reports, monthly and 
quarterly reports of research activities (including, but not limited to, 
subject enrollment), meeting summaries, quarterly research site performance 
reports from each Clinical Center, and other reports as needed.

o For Network collaborative studies, provide support, in concert with the 
NICHD Project Scientist and Project Officer, as necessary, to ensure that all 
Network sites and investigators fully comply with NIH regulatory requirements, 
including Human Subject Protections, informed consent, reporting of adverse 
events, and human and animal subject safety and welfare protections.

o Provide training at all Clinical Center sites for personnel as needed for 
standardization of collaborative protocols across sites.

o In coordination with the NICHD Project Scientist and Project Officer, 
provide periodic, on-site, quality control monitoring at the Clinical Center 
research sites for the Network studies being performed at that site.

Awardees will retain custody of and have primary rights to the data developed 
under these awards, subject to Government rights of access consistent with 
current HHS, PHS, and NIH policies.

2. NIH Responsibilities

NICHD Project Scientist:

The NICHD Project Scientist will have substantial scientific-programmatic 
involvement during conduct of this activity, through technical assistance and 
participation as one voting member of the Steering Committee. 

NICHD Project Officer:

The NICHD will appoint a Project Officer, apart from the Project Scientist, 
who will:

o Carry out continuous review of all activities to ensure that the objectives 
are being met and that all regulatory, fiscal, and administrative matters are 
handled according to NIH guidelines.

o Have the option to withhold support to a participating institution if 
technical performance requirements are not met.

o Perform other duties required for normal program stewardship of grants.

3. Collaborative Responsibilities

The management of the National Pediatric Collaborative Critical Care Research 
Network includes three committees whose functions are as follows:

o A Steering Committee will be responsible for protocol development and 
selection. Protocols that originate with investigators outside the Steering 
Committee may be presented for review as well, if two of the Principal 
Investigators and the NICHD Project Scientist concur. The structure of the 
Steering Committee is outlined above.

o An Advisory Board will advise the Steering Committee in the identification 
and prioritization of topics for Network research. The Advisory Board, chosen 
by the NICHD with the advice of the Steering Committee, will be composed of 
individuals with expertise in clinical trials, biostatistics, epidemiology, 
pediatric rehabilitation, pediatric pulmonology, developmental pediatrics, and 
pediatric surgery.

o A Protocol Review Committee will review and approve all clinical protocols  
before initiation.

4.  Arbitration Process

Any disagreements that may arise in scientific or programmatic matters within 
the scope of the award between grantees and the NIH may be brought to 
arbitration.  This special arbitration procedure in no way affects the 
awardee's right to appeal an adverse action that is otherwise appealable in 
accordance with PHS regulations 42 CFR Part 50, Subpart D, and HHS regulation 
at 45 CFR Part 16.  An Arbitration Panel will help resolve both scientific and 
programmatic issues that develop during the course of work that restrict 
progress.  The Arbitration Panel will be composed of three members:  a member 
selected by the Steering Committee without NIH staff voting, a member selected 
by NICHD, and a member with expertise in the relevant area selected by the 
other two members.


We encourage inquiries concerning this RFA and welcome the opportunity to 
answer questions from potential applicants.  Inquiries may fall into three 
areas:  scientific/research, peer review, and financial or grants management 

o Direct your questions about scientific/research issues to:  

Carol E. Nicholson, M.D., M.S.
Pediatric Critical Care and Rehabilitation Program
National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
6100 Executive Boulevard, Room 2A03, MSC 7510
Bethesda, MD  20892-7510
Telephone: (301) 435-6843
FAX: (301) 402-0832

o Direct your questions about peer review issues to:  

Robert Stretch, Ph.D.
Director, Division of Scientific Review
National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
6100 Executive Boulevard, Room 5B01, MSC 7510
Bethesda, MD  20892-7510
Telephone: (301) 496-1485
FAX: (301) 402-4104

o Direct your questions about financial or grants management matters to:  

John ‘Chris’ Robey
Grants Management Branch
National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
6100 Executive Boulevard, 8A17, MSC 7510
Bethesda, MD  20892-7510
Telephone: (301) 435-6996
FAX: (301) 451-5510


Prospective applicants are asked to submit a letter of intent that includes 
the following information:  

o Descriptive title of the proposed research 
o Name, address, and telephone number of the Principal Investigator 
o Names of other key personnel 
o Participating institutions 
o Number and title of this RFA 

Although a letter of intent is not required, is not binding, and does not 
enter into the review of a subsequent application, the information that it 
contains allows NICHD staff to estimate the potential review workload and plan 
the review.

The letter of intent is to be sent by the date listed at the beginning of this 
document.  The letter of intent should be sent to:  

Carol E. Nicholson, M.D., M.S.
Pediatric Critical Care and Rehabilitation Program
National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
6100 Executive Boulevard, Room 2A03, MSC 7510
Bethesda, MD  20892-7510
Telephone: (301) 435-6843
FAX: (301) 402-0832

Applications must be prepared using the PHS 398 research grant application 
instructions and forms (rev. 5/2001). Applications must have a Dun and 
Bradstreet (D&B) Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number as the 
Universal Identifier when applying for Federal grants or cooperative 
agreements. The DUNS number can be obtained by calling (866) 705-5711 or 
through the web site at The DUNS number 
should be entered on line 11 of the face page of the PHS 398 form. The PHS 398 
document is available at in an interactive 
format.  For further assistance contact GrantsInfo, Telephone (301) 435-0714, 


Please see the SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS section, above, for additional application 
instructions and requirements.

The Research Plan section of the application should include the following 

(1) Overview   
(2) Description of relevant capabilities and experience 
(3) Research plan detailing the strategy to be used in executing the 
responsibilities of the Data Coordinating Center

All three sections must be included within the page limit for the Research 
Plan as specified in the PHS 398 application instructions.

(1) Description of Items to be Included in the Overview

The Overview to the application should provide a summary of the capabilities 
and commitment of the applicant DCC to collaborative, multicenter research 
involving vulnerable populations. If the applicant DCC has substantial 
experience with, or staff expertise in, research involving vulnerable 
populations outside the pediatric age group, special sensitivity to the issues 
of informed consent in the critically ill, research under emergency 
circumstances, or experience in multi-center research in children, it should 
be summarized here. Additionally, a statement of intent to collaborate in a 
manner consistent with the terms and conditions of award should be included in 
the Introduction.

(2) Description of Capabilities and Experience to be Included in Application

o Describe previous successful collaboration in multicenter research, 
especially in pediatrics, within the last five years.

o Describe the available and/or planned facility and how it has been used for 
multicenter clinical research as well as coordination of basic and 
translational studies.

o Describe how the DCC staff's strengths in biostatistics, data management, 
data analysis, and project management have been used in multicenter research.

o Describe the extent of commitment of the Data Center Principal Investigator 
to this multicenter clinical research.

o Describe the processes used in assisting protocol design, forms and manual 
preparation, and in data collection for previous multicenter clinical, 
translational, and/or descriptive research.

o Describe the processes used in data quality control in previous multicenter 
clinical research by the proposed DCC team.

o Describe the reports prepared by the proposed DCC team on data and 
performance of Clinical Centers in previous multicenter clinical research.

o Summarize the proposed DCC team's contributions in preparing manuscripts 
from previous multicenter clinical research.

o Describe logistical services arranged by the DCC in support of previous  
multicenter clinical research.

o Describe the organizational systems used by the proposed DCC to assign and 
adjust its resources to participate in multicenter clinical research.

o Illustrate the calculation of costs of the proposed DCC’s contribution to 
the performance of a specific research protocol conducted in a multicenter 
setting during the past five years. The sample size, quantity of data 
accumulated and analyzed, and the number of publications should be specified.

(3) Material to Include in the Research Plan Section: Description of Research 
Strategy and Execution

o Statement of intent to collaborate in a manner consistent with the terms of 
the award.

o Plans and estimated timetables for initial and subsequent Network protocols

o Plans for staff allocation to meet the demands of the plans and timetables 
described above.

o Propose methods to be used to facilitate communication between Data Center 
staff and other components of the Network, including NICHD and the Clinical 

o Describe any planned modifications in the organizational systems to assign 
and adjust resource allocation during protocol performance. This should 
include any potential for outsourcing to increase efficiency or to meet short-
term needs.

o Describe the applicant's perception of her/his/their potential role in the 

o Describe procedures to increase operational efficiency and decrease costs 
while protecting the integrity of the data and the quality of the analyses.

o Describe the method to be used by the proposed DCC to calculate all 
operational costs per protocol and per enrolled patient for all Data Center 

o Propose an operational structure for providing and coordinating all Data 
Center functions for several Network protocols simultaneously. This should 
include lines of responsibility/authority for professional staff.

o Propose an idealized staffing pattern for providing Data Center functions 
from protocol design through analysis. This should include provisions for 
adjusting staff time commitments during the life of a study.

o Propose an administrative and management structure that would support and 
enhance the operational structure.

o Assume that two new protocols, including one randomized clinical trial and 
one observational, descriptive study, were planned but not yet implemented.  
Assume, for this exercise, that the two studies will generate data on 1500 
items for the randomized trials, and on 300 for the observational study during 
the first year of the Network. Using these assumptions, estimate the minimal 
base costs associated with providing professional and support staffing, and 
with the preparations necessary to receive and process data from the two 
studies during the first year.

o Describe any modifications in the applicant's current processes used to 
provide Data Center functions that may be made if the applicant were to be 
selected as the Network Data Center.

o Propose administrative and management functions that would assure continuing 
attention to cost-efficiency and productivity. This should include adjustment 
of resource allocation during protocol performance and the potential for 
outsourcing to improve efficiency or to meet short-term needs.

These are examples only of material that may be included in the application to 
demonstrate the capability of the applicant as a Data Coordinating Center. It 
is not necessary to address each one; they are suggestions of topical areas to 
indicate the strength of an applicant.

USING THE RFA LABEL:  The RFA label available in the PHS 398 (rev. 5/2001) 
application form must be affixed to the bottom of the face page of the 
application.  Type the RFA number on the label.  Failure to use this label 
could result in delayed processing of the application such that it may not 
reach the review committee in time for review.  In addition, the RFA title and 
number must be typed on line 2 of the face page of the application form and 
the YES box must be marked.  The RFA label is also available at:

SENDING AN APPLICATION TO THE NIH:  Submit a signed, typewritten original of 
the application, including the Checklist, and three signed photocopies, in one 
package to: 

Center for Scientific Review
National Institutes of Health
6701 Rockledge Drive, Room 1040, MSC 7710
Bethesda, MD  20892-7710
Bethesda, MD  20817 (for express/courier service)

At the time of submission, two additional copies of the application must be 
sent to:  

Robert Stretch, Ph.D.
Director, Division of Scientific Review
National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
6100 Executive Boulevard, Room 5B01, MSC 7510
Bethesda, MD  20892-7510
Rockville, MD  20852 (for express/courier service)
Telephone: (301) 496-1485
FAX: (301) 402-4104

APPLICATION PROCESSING:  Applications must be received on or before the 
application receipt date listed in the heading of this RFA.  If an application 
is received after that date, it will be returned to the applicant without 

Although there is no immediate acknowledgement of the receipt of an 
application, applicants are generally notified of the review and funding 
assignment within eight weeks.

The Center for Scientific Review (CSR) will not accept any application in 
response to this RFA that is essentially the same as one currently pending 
initial review, unless the applicant withdraws the pending application.  
However, when a previously unfunded application, originally submitted as an 
investigator-initiated application, is to be submitted in response to an RFA, 
it is to be prepared as a NEW application.  That is, the application for the 
RFA must not include an Introduction describing the changes and improvements 
made, and the text must not be marked to indicate the changes from the 
previous unfunded version of the application.


Upon receipt, applications will be reviewed for completeness by the CSR and 
responsiveness by the NICHD.  Incomplete and/or non-responsive applications 
will be returned to the applicant without further consideration.  

Applications that are complete and responsive to the RFA will be evaluated for 
scientific and technical merit by an appropriate peer review group convened by 
the NICHD in accordance with the review criteria stated below.  As part of the 
initial merit review, all applications will: 

o Undergo a process in which only those applications deemed to have the 
highest scientific merit, generally the top half of the applications under 
review, will be discussed and assigned a priority score
o Receive a written critique
o Receive a second level review by the National Advisory Child Health and 
Human Development Council.


applicant's prior experience in the design, conduct, data analysis, and data 
management of major collaborative research projects, including those involving 
pediatric populations, and successful performance as a DCC in the previous 
five years.

Investigator's plans to cooperate effectively in all PCC Network functions; 
demonstrated appropriate expertise and capability in biostatistics, study 
design, development and support, as well as data analysis, project management, 
and staff site training and quality assurance procedures.

EVIDENCE OF MANAGEMENT CAPABILITY:  Assessment of the DCC applicant's ability 

1) estimate appropriate and reasonable resources for research studies

2) manage research resources efficiently during study execution

3) enhance collaboration among sites/investigative teams of the research 

ADDITIONAL REVIEW CRITERIA: In addition to the above criteria, the following 
items will be considered in the determination of scientific merit and the 
priority score:

subjects and protections from research risk relating to their participation in 
the proposed research will be assessed.  (See criteria included in the section 
on Federal Citations, below.)

to include subjects from both genders, all racial and ethnic groups (and 
subgroups), and children as appropriate for the scientific goals of the 
research will be assessed.  Plans for the recruitment and retention of 
subjects will also be evaluated. (See Inclusion Criteria in the sections on 
Federal Citations, below.)

be used in the project, the five items described under Section f of the PHS 
398 research grant application instructions (rev. 5/2001) will be assessed.


BUDGET:  The reasonableness of the proposed budget and the requested period of 
support in relation to the proposed research.


Letter of Intent Receipt Date:  July 9, 2004
Application Receipt Date:  August 9, 2004
Peer Review Date:  October/November 2004
Council Review:  January 2005
Earliest Anticipated Start Date:  April 01, 2005


Award criteria that will be used to make award decisions include: 

o Scientific merit (as determined by peer review)
o Availability of funds
o Programmatic priorities


HUMAN SUBJECTS PROTECTION:  Federal regulations (45CFR46) require that 
applications and proposals involving human subjects must be evaluated with 
reference to the risks to the subjects, the adequacy of protection against 
these risks, the potential benefits of the research to the subjects and 
others, and the importance of the knowledge gained or to be gained 

DATA AND SAFETY MONITORING PLAN:  Data and safety monitoring is required for 
all types of clinical trials, including physiologic, toxicity, and dose-
finding studies (phase I); efficacy studies (phase II); efficacy, 
effectiveness and comparative trials (phase III).  The establishment of data 
and safety monitoring boards (DSMBs) is required for multi-site clinical 
trials involving interventions that entail potential risk to the participants 
(NIH Policy for Data and Safety Monitoring, NIH Guide for Grants and 
Contracts, June 12, 1998:  

the NIH that women and members of minority groups and their sub-populations 
must be included in all NIH-supported clinical research projects unless a 
clear and compelling justification is provided indicating that inclusion is 
inappropriate with respect to the health of the subjects or the purpose of the 
research.  This policy results from the NIH Revitalization Act of 1993 
(Section 492B of Public Law 103-43).

All investigators proposing clinical research should read the "NIH Guidelines 
for Inclusion of Women and Minorities as Subjects in Clinical Research - 
Amended, October, 2001," published in the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts 
on October 9, 2001 
a complete copy of the updated Guidelines is available at  
The amended policy incorporates: the use of an NIH definition of clinical 
research; updated racial and ethnic categories in compliance with the new OMB 
standards; clarification of language governing NIH-defined Phase III clinical 
trials consistent with the new PHS Form 398; and updated roles and 
responsibilities of NIH staff and the extramural community.  The policy 
continues to require for all NIH-defined Phase III clinical trials that:  a) 
all applications or proposals and/or protocols must provide a description of 
plans to conduct analyses, as appropriate, to address differences by 
sex/gender and/or racial/ethnic groups, including subgroups if applicable; and 
b) investigators must report annual accrual and progress in conducting 
analyses, as appropriate, by sex/gender and/or racial/ethnic group 

The NIH maintains a policy that children (i.e., individuals under the age of 
21) must be included in all human subjects research, conducted or supported by 
the NIH, unless there are scientific and ethical reasons not to include them.  

All investigators proposing research involving human subjects should read the 
"NIH Policy and Guidelines" on the inclusion of children as participants in 
research involving human subjects that is available at

requires education on the protection of human subject participants for all 
investigators submitting NIH proposals for research involving human subjects.  
You will find this policy announcement in the NIH Guide for Grants and 
Contracts Announcement, dated June 5, 2000, at

Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circular A-110 has been revised to 
provide public access to research data through the Freedom of Information Act 
(FOIA) under some circumstances.  Data that are (1) first produced in a 
project that is supported in whole or in part with Federal funds and (2) cited 
publicly and officially by a Federal agency in support of an action that has 
the force and effect of law (i.e., a regulation) may be accessed through FOIA.  
It is important for applicants to understand the basic scope of this 
amendment.  NIH has provided guidance at

Applicants may wish to place data collected under this RFA in a public 
archive, which can provide protections for the data and manage the 
distribution for an indefinite period of time.  If so, the application should 
include a description of the archiving plan in the study design and include 
information about this in the budget justification section of the application.  
In addition, applicants should think about how to structure informed consent 
statements and other human subjects procedures given the potential for wider 
use of data collected under this award.

Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) issued final modification to 
the "Standards for Privacy of Individually Identifiable Health Information", 
the "Privacy Rule," on August 14, 2002.  The Privacy Rule is a federal 
regulation under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act 
(HIPAA) of 1996 that governs the protection of individually identifiable 
health information, and is administered and enforced by the DHHS Office for 
Civil Rights (OCR). 

Decisions about applicability and implementation of the Privacy Rule reside 
with the researcher and his/her institution. The OCR website 
( provides information on the Privacy Rule, including 
a complete Regulation Text and a set of decision tools on "Am I a covered 
entity?"  Information on the impact of the HIPAA Privacy Rule on NIH processes 
involving the review, funding, and progress monitoring of grants, cooperative 
agreements, and research contracts can be found at

URLs IN NIH GRANT APPLICATIONS OR APPENDICES:  All applications and proposals 
for NIH funding must be self-contained within specified page limitations. 
Unless otherwise specified in an NIH solicitation, Internet addresses (URLs) 
should not be used to provide information necessary to the review because 
reviewers are under no obligation to view the Internet sites.  Furthermore, we 
caution reviewers that their anonymity may be compromised when they directly 
access an Internet site.

HEALTHY PEOPLE 2010:  The Public Health Service (PHS) is committed to 
achieving the health promotion and disease prevention objectives of "Healthy 
People 2010," a PHS-led national activity for setting priority areas.  This 
RFA is related to one or more of the priority areas.  Potential applicants may 
obtain a copy of "Healthy People 2010" at

AUTHORITY AND REGULATIONS:  This program is described in the Catalog of 
Federal Domestic Assistance at and is not subject to the 
intergovernmental review requirements of Executive Order 12372 or Health 
Systems Agency review.  Awards are made under the authorization of Sections 
301 and 405 of the Public Health Service Act as amended (42 USC 241 and 284) 
and under Federal Regulations 42 CFR 52 and 45 CFR Parts 74 and 92.  All 
awards are subject to the terms and conditions, cost principles, and other 
considerations described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.  The NIH Grants 
Policy Statement can be found at  

The PHS strongly encourages all grant recipients to provide a smoke-free 
workplace and discourage the use of all tobacco products.  In addition, Public 
Law 103-227, the Pro-Children Act of 1994, prohibits smoking in certain 
facilities (or in some cases, any portion of a facility) in which regular or 
routine education, library, day care, health care, or early childhood 
development services are provided to children.  This is consistent with the 
PHS mission to protect and advance the physical and mental health of the 
American people.

Weekly TOC for this Announcement
NIH Funding Opportunities and Notices

H H S Department of Health
and Human Services

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