Department of Health and Human Services
Part 1. Overview Information

 

Participating Organization(s)

National Institutes of Health (NIH)

Components of Participating Organizations

National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)

Funding Opportunity Title

Coordinating Center to Support NIDA Rural Opioid HIV and Comorbidity Initiative (U24 - Clinical Trial Not Allowed)

Activity Code

U24 Resource-Related Research Projects – Cooperative Agreements

Announcement Type

New

Related Notices
Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) Number

RFA-DA-19-004

Companion Funding Opportunity

 None

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number(s)

 93.279 

Funding Opportunity Purpose

 The purpose of this FOA is to fund a single interdisciplinary Coordinating Center to formalize and centralize support of the rural opioid initiative administered by NIDA and co-funded by CDC, SAMHSA, and ARC. This initiative was funded under RFA-DA-17-014 and RFA-DA-17-023. The Coordinating Center will provide scientific, technical, regulatory, ethical, and logistical support of data comparability, new data collection, and data integration; developing integrated rural opioid initiative datasets; assisting grantees with acquisition and analysis of local administrative and/or research datasets that enable evaluation of their implementation activities or augment their community assessments; conducting requested analyses that relate to the integrated rural opioid initiative datasets; developing and executing a rural opioid initiative publication and dissemination plan; and providing  logistical support for in-person meetings, conference calls, and webinars that include the rural opioid initiative grantees and funders. The Coordinating Center will be represented on the rural opioid initiative executive steering committee, along with the funders and rural opioid initiative grantees.

Key Dates

 

Posted Date

March 20, 2018

Open Date (Earliest Submission Date)

July 15, 2018

Letter of Intent Due Date(s)

30 days prior to the application due date

Application Due Date(s)

August 15, 2018, by 5:00 PM local time of applicant organization. All types of AIDS and AIDS-related applications allowed for this funding opportunity announcement are due on these dates.

Applicants are encouraged to apply early to allow adequate time to make any corrections to errors found in the application during the submission process by the due date.

AIDS Application Due Date(s)

August 15, 2018, by 5:00 PM local time of applicant organization. All types of AIDS and AIDS-related applications allowed for this funding opportunity announcement are due on these dates.

Applicants are encouraged to apply early to allow adequate time to make any corrections to errors found in the application during the submission process by the due date.

Scientific Merit Review

November 2018

Advisory Council Review

January 2019

Earliest Start Date

April 2019

Expiration Date

August 16, 2018

Due Dates for E.O. 12372

Not Applicable

Required Application Instructions

It is critical that applicants follow the Research (R) Instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide, except where instructed to do otherwise (in this FOA or in a Notice from the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts). Conformance to all requirements (both in the Application Guide and the FOA) is required and strictly enforced. Applicants must read and follow all application instructions in the Application Guide as well as any program-specific instructions noted in Section IV. When the program-specific instructions deviate from those in the Application Guide, follow the program-specific instructions. Applications that do not comply with these instructions may be delayed or not accepted for review.


There are several options available to submit your application through Grants.gov to NIH and Department of Health and Human Services partners. You must use one of these submission options to access the application forms for this opportunity.

  1. Use the NIH ASSIST system to prepare, submit and track your application online.
  2. Use an institutional system-to-system (S2S) solution to prepare and submit your application to Grants.gov and eRA Commons to track your application. Check with your institutional officials regarding availability.

  3. Use Grants.gov Workspace to prepare and submit your application and eRA Commons to track your application.
  4. Table of Contents

    Part 1. Overview Information
    Part 2. Full Text of the Announcement

    Section I. Funding Opportunity Description
    Section II. Award Information
    Section III. Eligibility Information
    Section IV. Application and Submission Information
    Section V. Application Review Information
    Section VI. Award Administration Information
    Section VII. Agency Contacts
    Section VIII. Other Information


    Part 2. Full Text of Announcement
    Section I. Funding Opportunity Description

    Background

    To improve understanding of the intersection of opioid use, HIV/AIDS, and comorbid conditions, this Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) builds on a rural opioid initiative that NIDA funded in 2017, with collaboration from co-funders the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC). This initiative was designed by NIDA and its cofounders to conduct community assessments, use these assessments to design plans for implementing evidence–based practices to address opioid use, particularly injection, HIV/AIDS and related comorbidities, and then evaluate implementation of these plans. The overall objective of this initiative is to identify best practices that can be disseminated to address the particular needs of rural communities confronting the opioid epidemic.

    This initiative was based on the recognition that rural communities faced particular problems in addressing opioid use, HIV/AIDS and other consequences of opioid use. These reflect the small population bases and low densities of population and services, as well as variations in local resources, planning and geography. Using two related FOAs (RFA-DA-17-014 and RFA-DA-17-023), NIDA awarded 8 UG3/UH3 cooperative agreements for project sites and one U24 cooperative agreement for a laboratory that works with CDC to disseminate next generation HCV testing. The UG3/UH3 grants are biphasic awards which involve multi-method community assessments during the first two years of the award (the UG3 phase), with a subset of grantees moving to the UH3 phase where they propose and test implementation of evidence-based practices to address opioid use, HIV/AIDS and related comorbidities in their communities. The research projects and implementation targets, by design, are expected to vary across sites, but with common core outcomes, as appropriate. Data from the core instruments will provide a unique snapshot across the 8 UG3 sites, and bigger picture of the rural opioid epidemic, HIV/AIDS, and related comorbidities than has been possible to date. The intervention projects will provide additional information about the epidemiology of HIV/AIDS and related comorbidities among opioid users, while also providing important information about how evidence-based practices effectively can be implemented in practice, given the challenges of rural environments. This project addresses highest priority HIV/AIDS objectives for NIH including efforts to increase the use of HIV prevention and care services and addressing opioid use in ways that are likely to reduce HIV incidence and prevent new epidemics.  

    Purpose

    The purpose of this FOA is to fund a single interdisciplinary Coordinating Center to formalize and centralize support of the rural opioid initiative administered by NIDA and co-funded by CDC, SAMHSA, and ARC.  Working collaboratively with NIDA, its cofounders, and the  rural opioid initiative grantees, the Coordinating Center will provide scientific, technical, regulatory, ethical, and logistical support of data comparability, new data collection, and data integration; developing integrated rural opioid initiative datasets; assisting grantees with acquisition and analysis of local administrative and/or research datasets that enable evaluation of their implementation activities or augment their community assessments; conducting requested analyses that relate to the integrated rural opioid initiative datasets; developing and executing a rural opioid initiative publication and dissemination plan; and providing  logistical support for in-person meetings, conference calls, and webinars that include the rural opioid initiative grantees and funders. The Coordinating Center will be represented on the rural opioid initiative executive steering committee (ESC) and will provide support for the ESC chair, who is not affiliated with the grantee sites and is designated by NIDA.

    Specific responsibilities of the Coordinating Center include:

    1) Support the existing data sharing efforts of rural opioid initiative grantees and working with grantees to support future datasharing and harmonization.  This will include:

    • Immediately upon award, participating in an in-person project hand off meeting to transition data datasets, documents, etc. from the grantees and funding agencies. This will include collaboration with existing workgroups for data collection instrument development, data sharing and data analysis
    • Developing innovative methodological strategies to support data sharing and harmonization of future, new data collection instruments (e.g. data quality control, assessing and resolving cross site variation, ensuring data comparability).
    • Providing a federally compliant online infrastructure to support the submission/ transmission of research data, including clinical data.
    • Monitoring data quality and performing systematic checks for data completeness and comparability.
    • Compiling integrated datasets, developing codebooks, and other data file documentation.
    • Supporting requests from NIDA, co-funders and rural opioid initiative grantees for analytic data files.
    • Developing data sharing and data use agreements to support harmonization among grantees and the eventual creation of public use data files.
    • Preparing de-identified public use data files and documents for submission into the NIDA supported repository National Addiction and HIV Data Archive Program (NAHDAP) and working with grantees on site-specific data sharing plans.

    2) Work with sites to help them integrate local data sources in ways that enable evaluation of projects in the UH3 phase or augment analysis of community assessments from the UG3 phases. This will include:

    • Surveillance data collected by state and local health departments, law enforcement, courts, or mental health/substance abuse agencies
    • Program data from service provider organizations
    • Insurance data from public or private insurers
    • Public data regarding providers, agencies
    • Data from the census and other population based surveys

    3) Conducting requested cross-site data analyses using the rural opioid initiative integrated datasets. This will include:

    • Performing descriptive data analyses to characterize cross-site study samples from across participating sites, addressing needs for harmonization where data collection methods or instruments may vary
    • Utilizing statistical and analytical techniques appropriate, as well as knowledge of different imputation technique for large integrated datasets.
    • Maintaining expertise on state-of-the-art and emerging study designs and methodologies relevant to scientific investigations of drug abuse and HIV/AIDS, as appropriate for analyzing and interpreting the integrated study datasets.

    4) Developing and executing a dissemination and publication plan. This will include:

    • Working with NIDA and rural opioid initiative grantees to develop a publication and dissemination plan.
    • Tracking the progress of manuscripts and/or presentations based on the integrated data.

    5) Providing operational, administrative, and logistical support for the rural opioid initiative data harmonization initiative.  This will include:

    • Maintaining a web-based project collaboration and document management system that meets applicable federal requirements (e.g., Live Link; SharePoint) to facilitate: (a) communication between rural opioid initiative grantees and staff from NIDA and its cofunders; (b) document sharing and storage; and (c) dissemination of relevant data collection forms, research findings, timelines, and other documents.
    • Planning, organizing and conducting annual in-person 2-day project update meetings of rural opioid initiative grantees and their project managers, NIH Staff, and other scientists in the Bethesda, MD area.
    • Compiling meeting minutes, delivering summary meeting reports, and coordinating post-meeting follow-up.
    • Supporting meetings for workgroup and subcommittees of rural opioid initiative PDs/PIs involved in the use and access of the harmonized dataset, including conference calls and webinars.

    Special Considerations

    National Advisory Council on Drug Abuse Recommended Guidelines for the Administration of Drugs to Human Subjects:  The National Advisory Council on Drug Abuse (NACDA) recognizes the importance of research involving the administration of drugs with abuse potential, and dependence or addiction liability, to human subjects.   Potential applicants are encouraged to obtain and review these recommendations of Council before submitting an application that will administer compounds to human subjects.  The guidelines are available on NIDA's Web site at  http://www.drugabuse.gov/funding/clinical-research/nacda-guidelines-administration-drugs-to-human-subjects.

    Points to Consider Regarding Tobacco Industry Funding of NIDA Applicants: The National Advisory Council on Drug Abuse (NACDA) encourages NIDA and its grantees to consider the points it has set forth with regard to existing or prospective sponsored research agreements with tobacco companies or their related entities and the impact of acceptance of tobacco industry funding on NIDA's credibility and reputation within the scientific community.  Please see (http://www.drugabuse.gov/about-nida/advisory-boards-groups/national-advisory-council-drug-abuse-nacda/council-statements/points-to-consider-regarding-) for details.

    Data Harmonization for Substance Abuse and Addiction via the PhenX Toolkit:  NIDA strongly encourages investigators involved in human-subjects studies to employ a common set of tools and resources that will promote the collection of comparable data across studies and to do so by incorporating the measures from the Core and Specialty collections, which are available in the Substance Abuse and Addiction Collection of the PhenX Toolkit (www.phenxtoolkit.org).  Please see NOT-DA-12-008 (https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-DA-12-008.html) for further details.

    See Section VIII. Other Information for award authorities and regulations.

    Section II. Award Information
    Funding Instrument

     Cooperative Agreement: A support mechanism used when there will be substantial Federal scientific or programmatic involvement. Substantial involvement means that, after award, NIH scientific or program staff will assist, guide, coordinate, or participate in project activities. See Section VI.2 for additional information about the substantial involvement for this FOA

    Application Types Allowed

    New

    The OER Glossary and the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide provide details on these application types.

    Clinical Trial?

    Not Allowed: Only accepting applications that do not propose clinical trials

    Need help determining whether you are doing a clinical trial?

    Funds Available and Anticipated Number of Awards

    NIDA intends to commit $750,000 in FY 2019 to fund 1 award.

    Award Budget

     Application budgets must not exceed $500,000 in direct costs for any year of the project.

    Award Project Period

     The maximum project period is 3 years. 

    NIH grants policies as described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement will apply to the applications submitted and awards made from this FOA.

    Section III. Eligibility Information
    1. Eligible Applicants
    Eligible Organizations

    Higher Education Institutions

    • Public/State Controlled Institutions of Higher Education
    • Private Institutions of Higher Education

    The following types of Higher Education Institutions are always encouraged to apply for NIH support as Public or Private Institutions of Higher Education:

    o   Hispanic-serving Institutions

    o   Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs)

    o   Tribally Controlled Colleges and Universities (TCCUs)

    o   Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian Serving Institutions

    o   Asian American Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institutions (AANAPISIs)

    Nonprofits Other Than Institutions of Higher Education

    • Nonprofits with 501(c)(3) IRS Status (Other than Institutions of Higher Education)
    • Nonprofits without 501(c)(3) IRS Status (Other than Institutions of Higher Education)

    For-Profit Organizations

    • Small Businesses
    • For-Profit Organizations (Other than Small Businesses)

    Governments

    • State Governments
    • County Governments
    • City or Township Governments
    • Special District Governments
    • Indian/Native American Tribal Governments (Federally Recognized)
    • Indian/Native American Tribal Governments (Other than Federally Recognized)
    • Eligible Agencies of the Federal Government
    • U.S. Territory or Possession

    Other

    • Independent School Districts
    • Public Housing Authorities/Indian Housing Authorities
    • Native American Tribal Organizations (other than Federally recognized tribal governments)
    • Faith-based or Community-based Organizations
    • Regional Organizations
    Foreign Institutions

    Non-domestic (non-U.S.) Entities (Foreign Institutions) are not eligible to apply.
    Non-domestic (non-U.S.) components of U.S. Organizations are not eligible to apply.
    Foreign components, as defined in the NIH Grants Policy Statement, are not allowed.

    Required Registrations

    Applicant Organizations

    Applicant organizations must complete and maintain the following registrations as described in the SF 424 (R&R) Application Guide to be eligible to apply for or receive an award. All registrations must be completed prior to the application being submitted. Registration can take 6 weeks or more, so applicants should begin the registration process as soon as possible. The NIH Policy on Late Submission of Grant Applications states that failure to complete registrations in advance of a due date is not a valid reason for a late submission.

    • Dun and Bradstreet Universal Numbering System (DUNS) - All registrations require that applicants be issued a DUNS number. After obtaining a DUNS number, applicants can begin both SAM and eRA Commons registrations. The same DUNS number must be used for all registrations, as well as on the grant application.
    • System for Award Management (SAM) (formerly CCR) – Applicants must complete and maintain an active registration, which requires renewal at least annually. The renewal process may require as much time as the initial registration. SAM registration includes the assignment of a Commercial and Government Entity (CAGE) Code for domestic organizations which have not already been assigned a CAGE Code.
    • NATO Commercial and Government Entity (NCAGE) Code – Foreign organizations must obtain an NCAGE code (in lieu of a CAGE code) in order to register in SAM. 
    • eRA Commons - Applicants must have an active DUNS number and SAM registration in order to complete the eRA Commons registration. Organizations can register with the eRA Commons as they are working through their SAM or Grants.gov registration. eRA Commons requires organizations to identify at least one Signing Official (SO) and at least one Program Director/Principal Investigator (PD/PI) account in order to submit an application.
    • Grants.gov – Applicants must have an active DUNS number and SAM registration in order to complete the Grants.gov registration.

    Program Directors/Principal Investigators (PD(s)/PI(s))

    All PD(s)/PI(s) must have an eRA Commons account.  PD(s)/PI(s) should work with their organizational officials to either create a new account or to affiliate their existing account with the applicant organization in eRA Commons. If the PD/PI is also the organizational Signing Official, they must have two distinct eRA Commons accounts, one for each role. Obtaining an eRA Commons account can take up to 2 weeks.

    Eligible Individuals (Program Director/Principal Investigator)

    Any individual(s) with the skills, knowledge, and resources necessary to carry out the proposed research as the Program Director(s)/Principal Investigator(s) (PD(s)/PI(s)) is invited to work with his/her organization 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 support.

    For institutions/organizations proposing multiple PDs/PIs, visit the Multiple Program Director/Principal Investigator Policy and submission details in the Senior/Key Person Profile (Expanded) Component of the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.

    2. Cost Sharing

    This FOA does not require cost sharing as defined in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

    3. Additional Information on Eligibility
    Number of Applications

    Applicant organizations may submit more than one application, provided that each application is scientifically distinct.

    The NIH will not accept duplicate or highly overlapping applications under review at the same time.  This means that the NIH will not accept:

    • A new (A0) application that is submitted before issuance of the summary statement from the review of an overlapping new (A0) or resubmission (A1) application.
    • A resubmission (A1) application that is submitted before issuance of the summary statement from the review of the previous new (A0) application.
    • An application that has substantial overlap with another application pending appeal of initial peer review (see NOT-OD-11-101).
    Section IV. Application and Submission Information
    1. Requesting an Application Package

    Buttons to access the online ASSIST system or to download application forms are available in Part 1 of this FOA. See your administrative office for instructions if you plan to use an institutional system-to-system solution.

    2. Content and Form of Application Submission

    It is critical that applicants follow the Research (R) Instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide, except where instructed in this funding opportunity announcement to do otherwise. Conformance to the requirements in the Application Guide is required and strictly enforced. Applications that are out of compliance with these instructions may be delayed or not accepted for review.

    For information on Application Submission and Receipt, visit Frequently Asked Questions – Application Guide, Electronic Submission of Grant Applications.

    Letter of Intent

    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 IC staff to estimate the potential review workload and plan the review.

    By the date listed in Part 1. Overview Information, prospective applicants are asked to submit a letter of intent that includes the following information:

    • Descriptive title of proposed activity
    • Name(s), address(es), and telephone number(s) of the PD(s)/PI(s)
    • Names of other key personnel
    • Participating institution(s)
    • Number and title of this funding opportunity

    The letter of intent should be sent to: NIDALetterofIntent@mail.nih.gov

    Office of Extramural Policy and Review
    National Institute on Drug Abuse/NIH/DHHS
    6001 Executive Boulevard, Suite 4243, MSC 9550
    Bethesda, MD 20892-9550

    Page Limitations

    All page limitations described in the SF424 Application Guide and the Table of Page Limits must be followed.

    Instructions for Application Submission

    The following section supplements the instructions found in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide and should be used for preparing an application to this FOA.

    SF424(R&R) Cover

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed.  

    SF424(R&R) Project/Performance Site Locations

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed.  

    SF424(R&R) Other Project Information

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed.  

    SF424(R&R) Senior/Key Person Profile

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed. 

    R&R or Modular Budget

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed.

    • A PD/PI on a U24 awarded under this RFA will be expected to maintain significant effort commitment not smaller than 2.4 person-months/year unless given prior approval by the NIDA Program Official.
    • Providing salary support to the Chair of the ESC not smaller than 2.4 person-months/year unless given prior approval by the NIDA Program Official.
    R&R Subaward Budget

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed.

    PHS 398 Cover Page Supplement

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed.  

    PHS 398 Research Plan

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed, with the following additional instructions: 

    Resource Sharing Plan: Individuals are required to comply with the instructions for the Resource Sharing Plans as provided in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide, with the following modification:

    • All applications, regardless of the amount of direct costs requested for any one year, should address a Data Sharing Plan.

    The Coordinating center must provide NIDA with access to all data generated under this award, subject to rules specified in any Certificates of Confidentiality obtained by awardees.

    Appendix:

    Only limited Appendix materials are allowed. Follow all instructions for the Appendix as described in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.

    PHS Human Subjects and Clinical Trials Information

    When involving NIH-defined human subjects research, clinical research, and/or clinical trials (and when applicable, clinical trials research experience) follow all instructions for the PHS Human Subjects and Clinical Trials Information form in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide, with the following additional instructions:

    If you answered "Yes" to the question "Are Human Subjects Involved?" on the R&R Other Project Information form, you must include at least one human subjects study record using the Study Record: PHS Human Subjects and Clinical Trials Information form or Delayed Onset Study record.

    Study Record: PHS Human Subjects and Clinical Trials Information

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed 

    Delayed Onset Study

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed.

    PHS Assignment Request Form

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed. 

     
    3. Unique Entity Identifier and System for Award Management (SAM)

    See Part 1. Section III.1 for information regarding the requirement for obtaining a unique entity identifier and for completing and maintaining active registrations in System for Award Management (SAM), NATO Commercial and Government Entity (NCAGE) Code (if applicable), eRA Commons, and Grants.gov

    4. Submission Dates and Times

    Part I. Overview Information contains information about Key Dates and times. Applicants are encouraged to submit applications before the due date to ensure they have time to make any application corrections that might be necessary for successful submission. When a submission date falls on a weekend or Federal holiday, the application deadline is automatically extended to the next business day.

    Organizations must submit applications to Grants.gov (the online portal to find and apply for grants across all Federal agencies). Applicants must then complete the submission process by tracking the status of the application in the eRA Commons, NIH's electronic system for grants administration. NIH and Grants.gov systems check the application against many of the application instructions upon submission. Errors must be corrected and a changed/corrected application must be submitted to Grants.gov on or before the application due date and time.  If a Changed/Corrected application is submitted after the deadline, the application will be considered late. Applications that miss the due date and time are subjected to the NIH Policy on Late Application Submission.

    Applicants are responsible for viewing their application before the due date in the eRA Commons to ensure accurate and successful submission.

    Information on the submission process and a definition of on-time submission are provided in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.

    5. Intergovernmental Review (E.O. 12372)

    This initiative is not subject to intergovernmental review.

    6. Funding Restrictions

    All NIH awards are subject to the terms and conditions, cost principles, and other considerations described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

    Pre-award costs are allowable only as described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

    7. Other Submission Requirements and Information

    Applications must be submitted electronically following the instructions described in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.  Paper applications will not be accepted.

    Applicants must complete all required registrations before the application due date. Section III. Eligibility Information contains information about registration.

    For assistance with your electronic application or for more information on the electronic submission process, visit Applying Electronically. If you encounter a system issue beyond your control that threatens your ability to complete the submission process on-time, you must follow the Guidelines for Applicants Experiencing System Issues. For assistance with application submission, contact the Application Submission Contacts in Section VII.

    Important reminders:

    All PD(s)/PI(s) must include their eRA Commons ID in the Credential field of the Senior/Key Person Profile Component of the SF424(R&R) Application Package. Failure to register in the Commons and to include a valid PD/PI Commons ID in the credential field will prevent the successful submission of an electronic application to NIH. See Section III of this FOA for information on registration requirements.

    The applicant organization must ensure that the DUNS number it provides on the application is the same number used in the organization's profile in the eRA Commons and for the System for Award Management. Additional information may be found in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.

    See more tips for avoiding common errors.

    Upon receipt, applications will be evaluated for completeness and compliance with application instructions by the Center for Scientific Review and responsiveness by NIDA/NIH. Applications that are incomplete, non-compliant and/or nonresponsive will not be reviewed.

    The application will need to demonstrate an understanding of the applicable Federal laws and the implications of these laws for aspects of project execution, including information security requirements, plain language requirements, and Section 508 compliance.

    The application will need to demonstrate adequate experience among Coordinating Center PIs/PCs and other personnel in working within a cooperative agreement, particularly where there is participation from more than one government agency or complex relationships within a single agency.  

    Post Submission Materials

    Applicants are required to follow the instructions for post-submission materials, as described in the policy. Any instructions provided here are in addition to the instructions in the policy.

    Section V. Application Review Information
    1. Criteria

    Only the review criteria described below will be considered in the review process. As part of the NIH mission, all applications submitted to the NIH in support of biomedical and behavioral research are evaluated for scientific and technical merit through the NIH peer review system.

    Overall Impact

    Reviewers will provide an overall impact score to reflect their assessment of the likelihood for the project to exert a sustained, powerful influence on the research field(s) involved, in consideration of the following review criteria and additional review criteria (as applicable for the project proposed).

    Scored Review Criteria

    Reviewers will consider each of the review criteria below in the determination of scientific merit, and give a separate score for each. An application does not need to be strong in all categories to be judged likely to have major scientific impact. For example, a project that by its nature is not innovative may be essential to advance a field.

    Significance

    Does the proposed Coordinating Center address the needs of the research consortium and projects that it will serve? Is the scope of activities proposed for the Coordinating Center appropriate to meet those needs? Will successful completion of the aims bring unique advantages or capabilities to the research projects and network??

    In particular, does the Coordinating Center address important problems or critical barrier to multi-site research and issues related to data management, integration, and dissemination in this context? To what extent might successful completion of the Coordinating Center's aims improve the capability, methods, and technologies that are utilized in data integration and dissemination in ways that can further the use and evaluation of evidence-based practices in rural opioid epidemics?

    Investigator(s)

    Are the PD(s)/PI(s) and other personnel well suited to their roles in the Coordinating Center? Do they have appropriate experience and training, and have they demonstrated experience and an ongoing record of accomplishments in managing collaborative research? Do the investigators demonstrate significant experience with coordinating collaborative clinical research? If the Center is multi-PD/PI, do the investigators have complementary and integrated expertise and skills; are their organizational structure appropriate for the Coordinating Center? Does the applicant have experience overseeing selection and management of subawards, if needed?      

    How adequate is the experience among personnel within the Coordinating Center in working within a cooperative agreement context, particularly where there is participation from more than one government agency or complex relationships within a single agency?

    In particular, how adequate is the demonstrated capacity, expertise, and productivity within the Coordinating Center related to (a) novel methodologies and analytics related to data harmonization and the creation of integrated datasets; (b) data management in the context of multi-site studies; (c) drug abuse or HIV services research; and (d) addressing appropriate privacy and confidentiality protections to facilitate further research, reuse of data, and replication?

    Innovation

    Does the application propose novel organizational concepts or management strategies in coordinating the research projects and consortium the Coordinating Center will serve? Are the concepts, strategies, or instrumentation novel to one type of research program or applicable in a broad sense? Is a refinement, improvement, or new application of organizational concepts or, management strategies proposed?      

    In particular, Does the application include mechanisms for leveraging novel collaboration and communication strategies? How innovative is the proposed approach to logistical support, communication, and data management for the larger cooperative agreement? Does the application challenge and seek to shift and improve current research paradigms by utilizing novel theoretical concepts, approaches, methodologies, instrumentation or tools for data integration, analysis and dissemination?

    Approach

    Are the overall strategy, operational plan, and organizational structure well-reasoned and appropriate to accomplish the goals of the research projects and consortium the Coordinating Center will serve? Will the investigators promote strategies to ensure a robust and unbiased scientific approach across the projects and consortium, as appropriate for the work proposed? Are potential problems, alternative strategies, and benchmarks for success presented? If the projects and consortium is in the early stages of operation, does the proposed strategy adequately establish feasibility and manage the risks associated with the activities of the projects and consortium? Are an appropriate plan for work-flow and a well-established timeline proposed?  Have the investigators presented adequate plans to ensure consideration of relevant biological variables, such as sex, for studies of vertebrate animals or human subjects? 

    How will the proposed activities facilitate flexibility and create policies, practices, protocols, and tools to enable broad collaboration with and participation by study sites and government agencies?

    How well does the application demonstrate an understanding of the challenges underlying the integration of large data sets?

    Does the application demonstrate a familiarity with human subjects research protocols and/or an ability to provide assistance to Research Centers on IRB issues related to data sharing?

    How well does the application evidence a capacity to manage complex, multi-site research projects including the provision of logistical support and data management?

    How well does the application demonstrate a capacity to process high volumes of quantitative and qualitative data in an efficient and secure way?

    How well does the application demonstrate a capacity to effectively facilitate secure communication, information, data, and document sharing among the project sites? Does the application demonstrate an ability to use state-of-the-art technological resources to enhance the efficiency of this communication? 

    How well does the application demonstrate an understanding of and capacity for the statistical techniques necessary to conduct cross-site analyses for continuous and discrete data, longitudinal and cross-sectional, and for qualitative as well quantitative data?

    How well does the application demonstrate a capacity and understanding of the procedures for eventually releasing the data for public use?

    How well does the application demonstrate an understanding of the applicable Federal laws and the implications of these laws for aspects of project execution, including information security requirements, plain language requirements, and Section 508 compliance?  

    If the project involves human subjects and/or NIH-defined clinical research, are the plans to address 1) the protection of human subjects from research risks, and 2) inclusion (or exclusion) of individuals on the basis of sex/gender, race, and ethnicity, as well as the inclusion or exclusion of children, justified in terms of the scientific goals and research strategy proposed?  

    Environment

    Will the scientific environment in which the work will be done contribute to the probability of success? Are the institutional support, equipment and other physical resources available to the investigators adequate for the project proposed? Will the project benefit from unique features of the scientific environment, subject populations, or collaborative arrangements? 

    How well will the project benefit from unique features of the scientific environment with respect to its capacity to work within a complex multi-site cooperative agreement?  How well does the application document the availability of state-of-the-art technological infrastructure to support the data collection, coordination, data analysis, and communication activities required? 

    Additional Review Criteria

    As applicable for the project proposed, reviewers will evaluate the following additional items while determining scientific and technical merit, and in providing an overall impact score, but will not give separate scores for these items.

    Protections for Human Subjects

    For research that involves human subjects but does not involve one of the six categories of research that are exempt under 45 CFR Part 46, the committee will evaluate the justification for involvement of human subjects and the proposed protections from research risk relating to their participation according to the following five review criteria: 1) risk to subjects, 2) adequacy of protection against risks, 3) potential benefits to the subjects and others, 4) importance of the knowledge to be gained, and 5) data and safety monitoring for clinical trials.

    For research that involves human subjects and meets the criteria for one or more of the six categories of research that are exempt under 45 CFR Part 46, the committee will evaluate: 1) the justification for the exemption, 2) human subjects involvement and characteristics, and 3) sources of materials. For additional information on review of the Human Subjects section, please refer to the Guidelines for the Review of Human Subjects.

    Inclusion of Women, Minorities, and Children 

    When the proposed project involves human subjects and/or NIH-defined clinical research, the committee will evaluate the proposed plans for the inclusion (or exclusion) of individuals on the basis of sex/gender, race, and ethnicity, as well as the inclusion (or exclusion) of children to determine if it is justified in terms of the scientific goals and research strategy proposed. For additional information on review of the Inclusion section, please refer to the Guidelines for the Review of Inclusion in Clinical Research.

    Vertebrate Animals

    The committee will evaluate the involvement of live vertebrate animals as part of the scientific assessment according to the following criteria: (1) description of proposed procedures involving animals, including species, strains, ages, sex, and total number to be used; (2) justifications for the use of animals versus alternative models and for the appropriateness of the species proposed; (3) interventions to minimize discomfort, distress, pain and injury; and (4) justification for euthanasia method if NOT consistent with the AVMA Guidelines for the Euthanasia of Animals. Reviewers will assess the use of chimpanzees as they would any other application proposing the use of vertebrate animals. For additional information on review of the Vertebrate Animals section, please refer to the Worksheet for Review of the Vertebrate Animal Section.

    Biohazards

    Reviewers will assess whether materials or procedures proposed are potentially hazardous to research personnel and/or the environment, and if needed, determine whether adequate protection is proposed.

    Resubmissions

    Not applicable

    Renewals

     Not applicable

    Revisions

     Not applicable

    Additional Review Considerations

    As applicable for the project proposed, reviewers will consider each of the following items, but will not give scores for these items, and should not consider them in providing an overall impact score.

    Applications from Foreign Organizations

     Not applicable

    Select Agent Research

    Reviewers will assess the information provided in this section of the application, including 1) the Select Agent(s) to be used in the proposed research, 2) the registration status of all entities where Select Agent(s) will be used, 3) the procedures that will be used to monitor possession use and transfer of Select Agent(s), and 4) plans for appropriate biosafety, biocontainment, and security of the Select Agent(s).

    Resource Sharing Plans

    Reviewers will comment on whether the following Resource Sharing Plans, or the rationale for not sharing the following types of resources, are reasonable: (1) Data Sharing Plan; (2) Sharing Model Organisms; and (3)  Genomic Data Sharing Plan (GDS).

    Authentication of Key Biological and/or Chemical Resources:

    For projects involving key biological and/or chemical resources, reviewers will comment on the brief plans proposed for identifying and ensuring the validity of those resources.

    Budget and Period of Support

    Reviewers will consider whether the budget and the requested period of support are fully justified and reasonable in relation to the proposed research.

    2. Review and Selection Process

    Applications will be evaluated for scientific and technical merit by (an) appropriate Scientific Review Group(s) convened by NIDA, in accordance with NIH peer review policy and procedures, using the stated review criteria. Assignment to a Scientific Review Group will be shown in the eRA Commons.

    As part of the scientific peer review, all applications:

    • May undergo a selection process in which only those applications deemed to have the highest scientific and technical merit (generally the top half of applications under review) will be discussed and assigned an overall impact score.
    • Will receive a written critique.

    Appeals of initial peer review will not be accepted for applications submitted in response to this FOA.

    Applications will be assigned  to the appropriate NIH Institute or Center. Applications will compete for available funds with all other recommended applications submitted in response to this FOA. Following initial peer review, recommended applications will receive a second level of review by the NIDA National Advisory Council. The following will be considered in making funding decisions:

    • Scientific and technical merit of the proposed project as determined by scientific peer review.
    • Availability of funds.
    • Relevance of the proposed project to program priorities.
    3. Anticipated Announcement and Award Dates

    After the peer review of the application is completed, the PD/PI will be able to access his or her Summary Statement (written critique) via the eRA Commons. Refer to Part 1 for dates for peer review, advisory council review, and earliest start date.

    Information regarding the disposition of applications is available in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

    Section VI. Award Administration Information
    1. Award Notices

    If the application is under consideration for funding, NIH will request "just-in-time" information from the applicant as described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

    A formal notification in the form of a Notice of Award (NoA) will be provided to the applicant organization for successful applications. The NoA signed by the grants management officer is the authorizing document and will be sent via email to the grantee's business official.

    Awardees must comply with any funding restrictions described in Section IV.5. Funding Restrictions. Selection of an application for award is not an authorization to begin performance. Any costs incurred before receipt of the NoA are at the recipient's risk. These costs may be reimbursed only to the extent considered allowable pre-award costs.

    Any application awarded in response to this FOA will be subject to terms and conditions found on the Award Conditions and Information for NIH Grants website.  This includes any recent legislation and policy applicable to awards that is highlighted on this website.

    2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements

    All NIH grant and cooperative agreement awards include the NIH Grants Policy Statement as part of the NoA. For these terms of award, see the NIH Grants Policy Statement Part II: Terms and Conditions of NIH Grant Awards, Subpart A: General  and Part II: Terms and Conditions of NIH Grant Awards, Subpart B: Terms and Conditions for Specific Types of Grants, Grantees, and Activities. More information is provided at Award Conditions and Information for NIH Grants.

    Recipients of federal financial assistance (FFA) from HHS must administer their programs in compliance with federal civil rights law. This means that recipients of HHS funds must ensure equal access to their programs without regard to a person's race, color, national origin, disability, age and, in some circumstances, sex and religion. This includes ensuring your programs are accessible to persons with limited English proficiency.  HHS recognizes that research projects are often limited in scope for many reasons that are nondiscriminatory, such as the principal investigator's scientific interest, funding limitations, recruitment requirements, and other considerations. Thus, criteria in research protocols that target or exclude certain populations are warranted where nondiscriminatory justifications establish that such criteria are appropriate with respect to the health or safety of the subjects, the scientific study design, or the purpose of the research.

    For additional guidance regarding how the provisions apply to NIH grant programs, please contact the Scientific/Research Contact that is identified in Section VII under Agency Contacts of this FOA. HHS provides general guidance to recipients of FFA on meeting their legal obligation to take reasonable steps to provide meaningful access to their programs by persons with limited English proficiency. Please see https://www.hhs.gov/civil-rights/for-individuals/special-topics/limited-english-proficiency/index.html. The HHS Office for Civil Rights also provides guidance on complying with civil rights laws enforced by HHS. Please see http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/civilrights/understanding/section1557/index.html; and https://www.hhs.gov/civil-rights/for-providers/laws-regulations-guidance/index.html. Recipients of FFA also have specific legal obligations for serving qualified individuals with disabilities. Please see http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/civilrights/understanding/disability/index.html. Please contact the HHS Office for Civil Rights for more information about obligations and prohibitions under federal civil rights laws at https://www.hhs.gov/ocr/about-us/contact-us/index.html or call 1-800-368-1019 or TDD 1-800-537-7697. Also note it is an HHS Departmental goal to ensure access to quality, culturally competent care, including long-term services and supports, for vulnerable populations. For further guidance on providing culturally and linguistically appropriate services, recipients should review the National Standards for Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services in Health and Health Care at http://minorityhealth.hhs.gov/omh/browse.aspx?lvl=2&lvlid=53.

    In accordance with the statutory provisions contained in Section 872 of the Duncan Hunter National Defense Authorization Act of Fiscal Year 2009 (Public Law 110-417), NIH awards will be subject to the Federal Awardee Performance and Integrity Information System (FAPIIS) requirements.  FAPIIS requires Federal award making officials to review and consider information about an applicant in the designated integrity and performance system (currently FAPIIS) prior to making an award.  An applicant, at its option, may review information in the designated integrity and performance systems accessible through FAPIIS and comment on any information about itself that a Federal agency previously entered and is currently in FAPIIS.  The Federal awarding agency will consider any comments by the applicant, in addition to other information in FAPIIS, in making a judgement about the applicant's integrity, business ethics, and record of performance under Federal awards when completing the review of risk posed by applicants as described in 45 CFR Part 75.205 "Federal awarding agency review of risk posed by applicants."  This provision will apply to all NIH grants and cooperative agreements except fellowships.

    Cooperative Agreement Terms and Conditions of Award

     The following special terms of award are in addition to, and not in lieu of, otherwise applicable U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) administrative guidelines, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) grant administration regulations at 45 CFR Parts 74 and 92 (Part 92 is applicable when State and local Governments are eligible to apply), ad other HHS, PHS, and NIH grant administration policies.

    The administrative and funding instrument used for this program will be the cooperative agreement, an "assistance" mechanism (rather than an "acquisition" mechanism), in which substantial NIH programmatic involvement with the awardees is anticipated during the performance of the activities. Under the cooperative agreement, the NIH purpose is to support and stimulate the recipients' activities by involvement in and otherwise working jointly with the award recipients 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 awardees for the project as a whole, although specific tasks and activities may be shared among the awardees and the NIH as defined below.

    The PD(s)/PI(s) of the Coordinating Center will have the primary responsibility for:

    Integrating and managing data submitted by rural opioid initiative grantees.

    Supporting the conduct of data analyses and defining approaches, innovations, and methods related to data integration methods, metrics, and the harmonized rural opioid initiative dataset.

    Providing expertise and leadership in addressing issues of broad scientific applicability, such as informed consent, data sharing standards, analysis methodology, application of NIH priorities for HIV/AIDS research, and dissemination of findings to NIDA, its cofounders, and the rural opioid initiative grantees related to methods, strategies and approaches within and between the projects.

    Facilitating comparability across the data from the rural opioid initiative projects when feasible and appropriate to scientific research questions.

    Facilitating data quality monitoring through rigorous data management and identification of data biases and errors as they arise.

    Agreeing to accept close coordination, cooperation, and management of the project with NIH, including those outlined under "NIH Responsibilities".

    Participating in group activities, including annual project update meetings.

    Planning and hosting the face-to-face annual meetings of the rural opioid initiative PIs.

    Providing integrative, organizational, and logistical support for the entire program, including tracking, scheduling, facilitating work group meetings and conference calls, and preparing concise minutes or summaries of meetings for distribution.

    Coordinating the eventual release to the scientific, public health and healthcare communities of methods, tools, data, results, and other resources.

    A PD/PI on a U24 awarded under this RFA will be expected to maintain significant effort commitment not smaller than 2.4 person-months/year unless given prior approval by the NIDA Program Official.

    Providing salary support to the Chair of the ESC not smaller than 2.4 person-months/year unless given prior approval by the NIDA Program Official.

    Providing high-quality documentation as needed, particularly of protocols or approaches that have broad applicability across the program that will be sufficient for outside users to understand and apply to their research projects with minimal assistance.

    NIH staff has substantial programmatic involvement that is above and beyond the normal stewardship role in awards, as described below:

    NIDA Project Scientist. A designated NIDA Program Official(s) acting as a Project Scientist(s) will have the following responsibilities:

    Serve as a resource for specific information on NIDA's programmatic intentions and priorities, and will help to foster collaborations between researchers, public health, and public policy partners both within and across other Federal agencies to increase the value of research to these participants. Similarly, the project scientist will facilitate communication involving NIDA's co-funders, the Coordinating Center and the rural opioid initiative grantees.

    Play an active role in developing innovative methodological strategies to support data collection, management, and analysis (e.g. data quality control, assessing and resolving cross site variation, ensuring data comparability)

    Identify research questions relevant to the rural opioid initiative based on the integrated cross-site datasets. He/she may cooperate with awardees in development, design, and coordination of research plans and study reports emerging from the harmonized rural opioid initiative dataset. In instances where significant involvement in the design of studies and/or analysis of results has occurred, the NIDA Project Scientist may cooperate with awardees as coauthor in preparing publications of data resulting from the research. In this regard, he/she will be subject to the publication/authorship policies governing all participants. In addition, publications involving NIDA staff require internal clearances.

    NIDA Program Official. A NIDA program official will be responsible for the normal scientific and programmatic stewardship of the award and will be named in the award notice. The NIDA Program Official, who will not participate in the research or the preparation of publications, will be responsible for the oversight of the cooperative agreement. The Program Official carries primary responsibility for:

    (1) periodic review and monitoring and approval of the progress of the research plans in relation to their stated objectives, including consistent communication with the PI and the Coordinating Center staff as well as requests for additional reports or documentation; and (2) making recommendations regarding continuance of the program. The NIDA Program Official will be responsible for monitoring the conduct of the project and overseeing the Coordinating Center.

    The Program Official will receive all required progress reports to determine that satisfactory progress is being made and will work collaboratively with the NIDA Grants Management Specialist to assure high quality business management of the program, including the most effective use of Federal financial assistance provided through this cooperative agreement. Additional NIH staff may participate in all rural opioid initiative-related meeting and work groups, as appropriate. Participation by staff from other federal agencies may also be appropriate and advantageous to facilitate the activities of the program.

    The NIH reserves the option to recommend withholding or reduction of support from activities that fail to achieve their goal or comply with the Terms and Conditions.

    Dispute Resolution

    Any disagreements that may arise in scientific or programmatic matters (within the scope of the award) between award recipients and the NIH may be brought to Dispute Resolution. This special dispute resolution procedure does not alter the awardee's right to appeal an adverse action that is otherwise appealable in accordance with PHS regulation 42 CFR Part 50, Subpart D and DHHS regulation 45 CFR Part 16. 

    3. Reporting

    When multiple years are involved, awardees will be required to submit the Research Performance Progress Report (RPPR) annually and financial statements as required in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

    A final RPPR, invention statement, and the expenditure data portion of the Federal Financial Report are required for closeout of an award, as described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

    The Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act of 2006 (Transparency Act), includes a requirement for awardees of Federal grants to report information about first-tier subawards and executive compensation under Federal assistance awards issued in FY2011 or later.  All awardees of applicable NIH grants and cooperative agreements are required to report to the Federal Subaward Reporting System (FSRS) available at www.fsrs.gov on all subawards over $25,000.  See the NIH Grants Policy Statement for additional information on this reporting requirement.

    In accordance with the regulatory requirements provided at 45 CFR 75.113 and Appendix XII to 45 CFR Part 75, recipients that have currently active Federal grants, cooperative agreements, and procurement contracts from all Federal awarding agencies with a cumulative total value greater than $10,000,000 for any period of time during the period of performance of a Federal award, must report and maintain the currency of information reported in the System for Award Management (SAM) about civil, criminal, and administrative proceedings in connection with the award or performance of a Federal award that reached final disposition within the most recent five-year period.  The recipient must also make semiannual disclosures regarding such proceedings. Proceedings information will be made publicly available in the designated integrity and performance system (currently FAPIIS).  This is a statutory requirement under section 872 of Public Law 110-417, as amended (41 U.S.C. 2313).  As required by section 3010 of Public Law 111-212, all information posted in the designated integrity and performance system on or after April 15, 2011, except past performance reviews required for Federal procurement contracts, will be publicly available.  Full reporting requirements and procedures are found in Appendix XII to 45 CFR Part 75 – Award Term and Conditions for Recipient Integrity and Performance Matters.

    Section VII. Agency Contacts

    We encourage inquiries concerning this funding opportunity and welcome the opportunity to answer questions from potential applicants.

    Application Submission Contacts

    eRA Service Desk (Questions regarding ASSIST, eRA Commons registration, submitting and tracking an application, documenting system problems that threaten submission by the due date, post submission issues)
    Finding Help Online: http://grants.nih.gov/support/ (preferred method of contact)
    Telephone: 301-402-7469 or 866-504-9552 (Toll Free)

    Grants.gov Customer Support (Questions regarding Grants.gov registration and submission, downloading forms and application packages)
    Contact Center Telephone: 800-518-4726
    Email: support@grants.gov

    GrantsInfo (Questions regarding application instructions and process, finding NIH grant resources)
    Email: GrantsInfo@nih.gov (preferred method of contact)
    Telephone: 301-945-7573

    Scientific/Research Contact(s)

    Richard A. Jenkins, PhD
    National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
    Telephone: 301-443-1923
    Email: jenkinsri@mail.nih.gov

    Peer Review Contact(s)

    Gerald McLaughlin, PhD
    National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
    Telephone: 301-827-5819
    Email: gmclaughlin@nida.nih.gov

    Financial/Grants Management Contact(s)

    Amy Connolly
    National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
    Telephone: 301-827-4457
    Email: connolla@mail.nih.gov

    Section VIII. Other Information

    Recently issued trans-NIH policy notices may affect your application submission. A full list of policy notices published by NIH is provided in the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts. All awards are subject to the terms and conditions, cost principles, and other considerations described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

    Authority and Regulations

    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 Part 52 and 45 CFR Part 75.

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