NIMH Focus for Intervention Studies Submitted Under the Stigma and Health Literacy Announcements

Notice Number: NOT-MH-14-016

Key Dates
Release Date: July 8, 2014

Related Announcements


Issued by
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)


The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) now requires a higher level of rigor in studies of the effectiveness of mental health-related interventions. It has recently issued a set of funding opportunity announcements (FOAs; RFA-MH-15-320; RFA-MH-15-325; RFA-MH-15-330) for clinical trials research that focus on explicitly testing hypotheses regarding moderators, mediators, and mechanisms of action for all types of interventions. Applicants are strongly encouraged to propose studies that are designed not only as tests of intervention effects on ultimate outcomes of interest, but should also measure and confirm mechanism(s) of action, that is, whether 1) the intervention's intended targets were engaged and 2) the identified change mechanism was operative. Thus, under these FOAs, intervention trials should be designed so that results, whether positive or negative, will provide information of high scientific utility and will inform decisions about whether further development or testing of the intervention is indicated.

NIMH will continue to support PAR-13-130, PAR-13-131, and PAR-13-132 ("Understanding and Promoting Health Literacy"), and PA-13-246, PA-13-247, and PA-13-248 ("Research to Characterize and Reduce Stigma to Improve Health") which encourage studies that may include developing and testing the effectiveness of mental health-related interventions. Potential applicants to NIMH under these announcements who anticipate developing or testing interventions are encouraged to consider a focus on measuring target engagement and mechanism of action when designing their studies. Research teams developing intervention studies for submission under these announcements should consult NOT-MH-14-007.   In addition, potential applicants are encouraged to contact the NIMH program officer listed below if further clarification is needed.


Please direct all inquiries to:

Denise Juliano-Bult, M.S.W.
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Telephone: 301-443-1638