AHRQ Announces Interest in Health Services Research on Health System and Healthcare Professional Responsiveness to COVID-19
Notice Number:

Key Dates

Release Date:

February 17, 2022

Related Announcements

PA-18-793- AHRQ Health Services Research Demonstration and Dissemination Grants (R18)

PA-18-794- AHRQ Small Research Grant Program (R03)

PA-18-795- AHRQ Health Services Research Projects (R01)

PA-21-202 - AHRQ/PCORI Learning Health System Small Grant Pilot Program

PA-21-266 - Patient Safety Learning Laboratories: Advancing Patient Safety through
Design, Systems Engineering, and Health Services Research (R18)

PA-21-267 - Making Health Care Safer in Ambulatory Care Settings and
Long-term Care Facilities (R18)

NOT-HS-16-011 - Innovative Research in Primary Care

NOT-HS-16-013 - Optimizing Care for People Living with Multiple Chronic Conditions
through the Development of Enhanced Care Planning

Issued by

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ)


This Special Emphasis Notice (SEN) informs the research community that the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) is interested in receiving health services research grant applications to develop models of care that improve access, quality, and outcomes of care related to COVID-19 and post-acute sequalae from COVID-19 (PASC).

COVID-19 has presented extraordinary challenges to an already strained healthcare system. Since 2020, organizations have faced surges of demand for COVID-19–related care amid heightened staffing shortages, scarce supplies, and limitations on patient-provider interactions. Improved understanding of the SARS-CoV-2 virus and its mechanisms of illness has enabled healthcare organizations to develop innovative solutions and models of care in response. Providing patient-centered, whole person–oriented care for COVID-19 and PASC remains a challenge as organizations seek to develop strategies for effectively preventing, diagnosing, treating, and managing COVID-19. These efforts are particularly important to people with multiple chronic conditions (MCC), whose higher risks for severe disease, mortality, and PASC compound the existing burdens of their underlying conditions. Similarly, the greater impact of COVID-19 among socially disadvantaged populations has underscored the need for models that address the disease in the context of the whole person.

In this SEN, AHRQ is interested in critical research focused on increasing our understanding of how to effectively and efficiently deliver care to individuals and populations at risk for or with COVID-19 infection and PASC, also known as long COVID. AHRQ is interested applications that develop, implement, and evaluate interventions and models of care, including those targeting the specific needs and challenges of disadvantaged populations and people living with MCC, that improve access, quality, and outcomes of care. Proposed studies may focus on the patient, clinician, practice, or system level interventions. Multilevel interventions are encouraged. AHRQ also encourages projects that produce and disseminate timely insights that can be used to improve patient care and inform healthcare delivery during both routine operations and public health emergencies.

AHRQ encourages applications that:

  • Develop and test care models and interventions to improve access, quality, and outcomes related to the prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and management of COVID-19 and PASC
  • Implement patient-centered, whole-person approaches that address the needs of people with multiple chronic conditions and socially disadvantaged populations in the context of the stressors stemming from the pandemic
  • Improve equity and reduce disparities related to care for COVID-19 and PASC across diverse populations and communities
  • Advance models that target the intersection, coordination, and transitions between settings, including inpatient, emergency department, primary care, other ambulatory care settings, home care, post-acute care, and public health

Applicants may propose projects addressing any healthcare delivery–related topic with demonstrated relevance to caring for COVID-19 and PASC, including but not limited to how interventions or models of care:

  • Improve the Quality of Care and Patient Outcomes
  • Improve Patient Safety
  • Improve Health System Responsiveness
  • Affect Socially Disadvantaged Populations and People with Multiple Chronic Conditions
  • Incorporate Telehealth and Other Digital Healthcare Innovations, and the SubsequentOutcomes and Unintended Consequences

The Agency encourages research teams to submit applications in response to this emphasis using AHRQ’s standing R18, R03, and R01 funding mechanisms (PA-18-793, PA-18-794, PA-18-795).
Applicants should clearly state in their project summary/abstract of their grant application that they are responding to this SEN by including the title and number of this SEN NOT-HS-22-010 and enter this SEN number in the Agency Routing Identifier field (box 4B) of the SF424 R&R form. Applications responding to this SEN should be submitted on regular application receipt dates identified in the respective Funding Opportunity Announcement and will be reviewed by AHRQ standing study sections. Applicants should consider this SEN active until February 14, 2025.


Please direct all inquiries to:

Leeann Comfort, PhD, MPP
Division of Healthcare Delivery and Systems Research Center for Evidence and Practice Improvement
Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality