Clarification on Prohibition on Expending NIH Grant Funds for Covered Telecommunications Equipment or Services
Notice Number:

Key Dates

Release Date:

December 11, 2020

Related Announcements

RFA-RM-22-001 - Limited Competition: Transformative Research to Address Health Disparities and Advance Health Equity at Minority Serving Institutions (U01 Clinical Trial Optional)

RFA-AT-22-006 - NIH-DOD-VA Pain Management Collaboratory Pragmatic and/or Implementation Science Demonstration Projects ((UG3/UH3) Clinical Trial Required)

  • December 9, 2021 - This RFA has been reissued as RFA-RM-22-007
  • RFA-RM-22-007 - Pilot Projects Enhancing Utility and Usage of Common Fund Data Sets (R03 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)


    Issued by



    Effective August 13, 2020, the Office of Management and Budget revised 2 Code of Federal Regulations Part 200 to align with Section 889 of the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019 (Public Law 115-232). This new section, 2 CFR 200.216, Prohibition on certain telecommunication and video surveillance services or equipment, prohibits Federal award recipients from using government funds to procure or obtain, or enter contracts to procure or obtain equipment, services, or systems that use covered telecommunications equipment or services.

    The following term of award is therefore applicable to all NIH grants and cooperative agreements issued on or after August 13, 2020. As such, this notice modifies the terms and conditions of award for grants issued on or after that date. The NIH Grants Policy Statement will be updated at the time of its next publication to incorporate this term and condition into Section 4– Public Policy Requirements, Objectives and Other Appropriation Mandates.

    In accordance with the newly revised 2 CFR 200.216 and 200.471, recipients and subrecipients are prohibited from expending grant funds to:

    1. Procure or obtain;
    2. Extend or renew a contract to procure or obtain; or
    3. Enter into a contract (or extend or renew a contract) to procure or obtain equipment, services, or systems that use covered telecommunications equipment or services as a substantial or essential component of any system, or as critical technology as part of any system. As described in Public Law 115-232, section 889, covered telecommunications equipment is telecommunications equipment produced by Huawei Technologies Company or ZTE Corporation (or any subsidiary or affiliate of such entities).
    1. For the purpose of public safety, security of government facilities, physical security surveillance of critical infrastructure, and other national security purposes, video surveillance and telecommunications equipment produced by Hytera Communications Corporation, Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology Company, or Dahua Technology Company (or any subsidiary or affiliate of such entities).
    2. Telecommunications or video surveillance services provided by such entities or using such equipment.
    3. Telecommunications or video surveillance equipment or services produced or provided by an entity that the Secretary of Defense, in consultation with the Director of the National Intelligence or the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, reasonably believes to be an entity owned or controlled by, or otherwise connected to, the government of a covered foreign country.

    COVERED FOREIGN COUNTRY means the People’s Republic of China.

    Under the National Public Policy Requirements (See NIH GPSSection 4) NIH requires applicants and recipients to certify compliance, by signing the face page of the application. The Authorized Organization Official is the responsible party for doing so. Recipients further certify compliance at the time of drawdown of funds from the Payment Management System. Recipients must maintain documentation on file to demonstrate that they have not used grant funds to procure equipment or services or enter into contracts prohibited by this part and maintain appropriate internal controls to ensure ongoing compliance. Should NIH determine non-compliance, NIH will take appropriate enforcement actions, which may include termination of award.

    Frequently Asked Questions on this topic are available here.


    Please direct all inquiries to:

    OPERA Division of Grants Policy

    Please direct all compliance inquiries to:

    OPERA Division of Grants Compliance and Oversight

    Weekly TOC for this Announcement
    NIH Funding Opportunities and Notices