AHRQ Announces Interest in Applications to Provide Policy Relevant Evaluations to Inform Development of Health Information Technology (IT) Meaningful Use Objectives

Notice Number: NOT-HS-13-006

Key Dates

Release Date: February 11, 2013

Related Notices


Issued by

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ)


The mission of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) is to improve the quality, safety, efficiency, and effectiveness of healthcare for all Americans. AHRQ achieves this mission by supporting a program of health services research and by working with partners to promote improvements in clinical and health systems practice that benefit patients.

This Notice announces AHRQ's interest in funding research demonstration projects (see AHRQ Health Services Research Demonstration and Dissemination Grants (R18), PA-13-046 at https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-13-046.html) that will provide evidence to inform the development of meaningful use objectives.

Given the current state of development, AHRQ is only interested in supporting applications that propose projects that can begin in September, 2013, and which will disseminate results before June, 2014.

AHRQ is particularly interested in projects that will evaluate implementation of proposed Stage 3 meaningful use objectives in primary care practices for the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Programs (http://www.healthit.gov/sites/default/files/hitpc_stage3_rfc_final.pdf) and that propose strategies for improving the objectives at the policy level, EHR innovations that would support meeting the proposed objectives, and suggestions for primary care practices to increase the value of meaningful use objectives. AHRQ is also interested in projects that evaluate implementation of the same objectives in the hospital setting and propose strategies for improvement as above.

Projects responding to this Special Emphasis Notice must engage Meaningful Use eligible primary care ambulatory offices or Meaningful Use eligible hospitals in the evaluation of one or more proposed Stage 3 meaningful use objectives.

AHRQ has particular interest in applications that utilize the established infrastructure for conducting health IT-focused health services research of a primary care Practice-Based Research Network (PBRN). Given the requirement for immediate implementation and quick reporting of policy relevant results, AHRQ expects PBRNs affiliated with the Centers of Excellence for Primary Care Practice-Based Research and Learning Networks (PCPRLN) (see http://www.ahrq.gov/research/rescenters.htm) to be

particularly ready to engage in this type of research.

Innovative research designs are encouraged. Proposals that evaluate potential State 3 Meaningful Use objectives across more than one EHR platform are of particular interest.

The time-sensitive nature of this policy relevant research necessitates that the applicant demonstrate capacity in resources and project management to support the timely dissemination of results of the project within nine months. In order to ensure rapid development and dissemination of these findings, study extensions will be strongly discouraged, and will be reviewed strictly on a case-by-case basis.

Further guidance:

Grant applications should specify in the application abstract that they are responding to this particular Special Emphasis Notice (NOT-HS-13-006). Information about the grant application process, including e-grant applications and the funding mechanism noted above, can be found within PA-13-046. Grant information is also provided at http://www.ahrq.gov/fund/.

Given the nature of these proposals, AHRQ is particularly interested in meritorious applications which are submitted by review Cycle 2, 2013, on the March 28, 2013 application receipt date indicated in NOT-HS-13-005.


Please direct all inquiries to:

Angela Nunley
Program Analyst, Health IT Portfolio
Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
Telephone: 301-427-1505
Email: Angela.Nunley@ahrq.hhs.gov