Full Text MH-96-001
NIH GUIDE, Volume 25, Number 20, June 21, 1996
RFA:  MH-96-001
P.T. 22, FF

  Biomedical Research Training 
  Mental Disorders 

National Institute of Mental Health
Letter of Intent Receipt Date:  August 1, 1996
Application Receipt Date:  September 17, 1996
The goal of research training programs at the National Institute of
Mental Health (NIMH) is to help educate tomorrow's leaders in mental
health research.  The specific purpose of the Minority Research
Fellowship Program (MRFP) is to ensure that underrepresented minority
investigators assume a prominent position among these researchers.
This Request for Applications (RFA) for a Minority Research
Fellowship Program in Mental Health Nursing invites applications
designed to support the development and training of underrepresented
minority individuals in doctoral programs in mental health nursing to
enable them to undertake active, productive careers in scientific
investigations related to mental health and mental disorders.  The
outcome of successful fellowship training should include mastery of
research skills, commitment to future research activity, and promise
of future achievement in research endeavors in the mental health
field.  Areas of research interest to NIMH are indicated in the NIMH
Extramural Research Support Programs announcement (rev. 6/94).
The Public Health Service (PHS) is committed to achieving the health
promotion and disease prevention objectives of "Healthy People 2000,"
a PHS-led national activity for setting priority areas.  This RFA,
"NIMH Research Fellowships - Underrepresented Minority Nurses," is
related to the priority areas of mental health and mental disorders
and educational and community-based programs.  Potential applicants
may obtain a copy of "Healthy People 2000" (Full Report: Stock No.
017-001-00474-0 or Summary Report: Stock No. 017-001-00473-1) through
the Superintendent of Documents, Government Printing Office,
Washington, DC 20402- 9325 (telephone 202/512-1800).
Applications may be submitted by domestic, non-profit, public or
private organizations, such as universities, colleges, and
professional and scientific organizations and associations.  Foreign
institutions and organizations are not eligible for Institutional
National Research Service Awards (NRSAs).  Applications from
international organizations must pertain only to the organization's
domestic component(s).  Applicants must have staff and facilities
suitable for implementing a national program to recruit, select,
place, and maintain underrepresented minority students in doctoral
programs with high quality mental health research training and with
strong research programs.  Racial/ethnic minority individuals, women,
and persons with disabilities are encouraged to apply as MRFP
Training Program Directors.
Trainee Eligibility Requirements
Individuals selected by the Program Director to participate in the
MRFP must be citizens or noncitizen nationals of the United States,
or have been lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent
residence and have in their possession an Alien Registration Receipt
Card (I-151 or I-551) or other legal verification of admission for
permanent residence at the time of appointment to the MRFP.
Noncitizen nationals are persons born in lands which are not States
but which are under U.S. sovereignty, jurisdiction, or administration
(e.g., American Samoa).  Individuals on temporary or student visas
are not eligible.  For the purpose of this RFA, minority trainees are
defined as individuals from racial or ethnic groups that are
determined by the grantee institution to be underrepresented in
biomedical or behavioral research.
The predoctoral trainees must have received a baccalaureate degree
(domestic or equivalent foreign) from an accredited institution, and
must be enrolled in a doctoral degree program, as of the date of
appointment to the MRFP.  These National Research Service Award
(NRSA) fellowships are not given for study leading to an M.D., D.O.,
D.D.S., or other similar professional degree, or for study that is
part of residency training leading to a medical specialty.  However,
this fellowship may support a specified period of full-time research
training for a health professional in nursing who intends to pursue a
research career, even if that period of training may be credited
toward a specialty board certification.
This RFA will use the Institutional National Research Service (T32)
Award mechanism.  Responsibility for the planning, direction, and
execution of the proposed training program will be solely that of the
applicant.  The total project period for an application submitted in
response to this RFA may not exceed five years.  The anticipated
award date is July 1, 1997.
Because the nature and scope of the research training program
proposed in response to this RFA may vary, the size of an award may
vary also.  It is anticipated that the award will be approximately
$350,000 direct costs per year.
This RFA is a one-time solicitation.  Applications may be submitted
for either new or competing continuation awards, and are renewable.
Future unsolicited competing continuation applications will compete
with all investigator-initiated applications and be reviewed
according to the customary peer review procedures.
By law, an individual trainee may receive no more than five years of
NRSA support in the aggregate at the predoctoral level.  Any
exception to this limitation requires a waiver from the Director,
NIMH, based on a review of the justification provided by the awardee.
Because MRFP awards have special eligibility requirements,
application formats, and review criteria, applicants are strongly
encouraged to consult with the program staff listed under INQUIRIES.
Funds requested under this mechanism are limited to $350,000 per year
in direct costs.  Indirect costs are payable at the rate of eight
percent of modified total direct costs.  In fiscal year 1997, pending
the availability of funds, it is expected that $350,000 will be
available for support of one Minority Research Fellowship Program in
Mental Health Nursing.  A single award (new or competing
continuation) will be made.  Selection for funding will be made after
competitive peer review.
The applicant should provide a plan for the proposed MRFP.
Considerable flexibility may be demonstrated in designing options for
the MRFP, but each aspect must be clearly described in terms of its
intent and mechanism, and convincing justification must be provided
for the approach being taken.  The following components must be
Program Plan
The applicant must describe a program plan for an MRFP in Mental
Health Nursing, including the overall goals, specific objectives, and
number of trainees to be supported.  The plan should clearly indicate
how the program will recruit, select, and place underrepresented
minority students in appropriate doctoral level programs strong in
mental health research, and how it will anticipate and deal with
potential problems which may be encountered in program
implementation. The plan should also indicate how the applicant will
provide ongoing monitoring, career counseling and other support to
help ensure that MRFP fellows complete their doctoral training and
enter productive research careers in areas relevant to mental health.
Finally, the plan should indicate how the program will establish
networks and linkages with other mental health researchers.  Special
emphasis should be given to how the training will prepare fellows for
careers in mental health research.
The plan should provide documentation of the specific research
training needs to be addressed by the program, and make clear how it
will ensure that the number of underrepresented minority nurses
conducting research in mental health areas will be increased.
Considerable latitude is allowed to applicants in order to consider
the best strategy for an MRFP.  While innovation is encouraged, the
applicant must describe how the proposed design will lead to the
overall goal of providing an increased number of minority researchers
who are actively engaged in research careers in mental health
For example, the application should contain descriptions of how the
applicant proposes to implement the following kinds of activities:
o  Recruitment, selection, and training of fellows in the program;
counseling to potential applicants to assist them in selection of
training institutions with active mental health research programs.
The applicant must clearly indicate the criteria to be used in the
selection of MRFP fellows and should include a draft announcement and
application forms which would be used to recruit and select
individual MRFP fellows.  Recruitment plans should also include
consideration of the best ways to recruit promising students from
undergraduate programs, such as the Career Opportunities in Research
Education and Training (COR) Program (formerly known as the Minority
Access to Research Careers, or MARC, Program) and other programs
encouraging minority students to enter research careers.
o  Tracking and monitoring of each trainee's research training
o  Continuing contact, support, and supervision to be provided to
individual fellows by the Program Director
o  Kinds of evaluation and reports expected from the fellows and from
their faculty mentors and graduate department; availability of
special faculty mentors and communication with them
o  Enrichment experiences, professional socialization, and networks
beyond those provided in the training setting
o  Summer or short term training or research workshops to meet
special needs of the trainees in mental health research (e.g., course
work in research methods/statistical analysis prior to or during
doctoral study, workshops on current research on mental disorders
among racial and ethnic groups, social support systems, behavioral
genetics, personality, family processes, cognition, perception,
diagnostic, treatment, and outcome issues, the validity and
reliability of assessment and diagnostic tests for minority
populations).  Any expenses associated with such attendance must be
included in the budget for this proposed program.
o  Procedures built into the program to ensure that MRFP
dissertations have strong mental health relevance and to facilitate
the completion of high quality dissertations. Support of dissertation
expenses may be requested if there is a clear plan for reviewing
dissertation proposals.
o  Evidence that the principles of ethical scientific conduct will be
incorporated in the research training experience of each trainee
o  Discussions of methods to be used to facilitate the subsequent
transition to research careers, once training is completed
The application also should include a plan for evaluating the
program, including follow-up of trainees.  Finally, the application
must provide assurance that the MRFP award will not be used to
substitute for existing Federal funding for research training.
Program Leadership
The Program Director of the applicant organization will be
responsible, with the assistance of a MRFP Advisory Committee, for
the recruitment and selection of underrepresented minority trainees,
and for their placement in appropriate doctoral training programs
which have strong research and research training in mental health;
for the provision of needed fiscal and other support during their
doctoral training; and for the overall administration of the research
training program, including seeing that required forms are completed
and submitted on time, and that addresses of trainees are maintained
for three years after individual support terminates.
The Program Director will assist the prospective fellows in the
selection of training institutions and provide counseling on research
curricula offerings which will assure that fellows carry out research
in mental health, with the primary objective of extending their
skills and knowledge in preparation for a research career.  The
Program Director must have sufficient research qualifications and
experience to provide genuine leadership.  The applicant should
describe the Program Director's qualifications, mental health
research experience, and knowledge of current mental health research,
as well as his/her duties in the MRFP, and should include his/her
curriculum vitae in the appendix.
The amount of time to be devoted by the Program Director to various
tasks must be indicated, as well as the total amount of time
committed solely to implementing the MRFP program. A minimum of 25
percent of the Program Director's time must be committed to
implementing the program.
Administrative Structure
The applicant must describe the administrative structure of the
program, indicating the distribution of responsibilities and the
relationship of the MRFP to the overall program of the sponsoring
organization.  Other sources of fiscal or in- kind support for the
program from the sponsoring organization should also be described.
Advisory Committee
The applicant must present a plan for establishing a MRFP Advisory
Committee of outstanding mental health researchers in mental health
nursing, which includes substantial minority representation, to
assist the Program Director in the recruitment and selection of
fellows and to advise students concerning appropriate doctoral
programs with strong mental health research.  The functions, size,
and composition of the advisory committee should be clearly stated.
The applicant should describe the range and types of mental health
research to be represented, the qualifications and selection criteria
for members of the proposed MRFP Advisory Committee, explain the
duties and responsibilities of this committee, the criteria to be
used in selecting fellows for the research training program, and the
MRFP Advisory Committee's role in the overall program. The
application should also contain a list of proposed committee members
who are active mental health researchers and provide the rationale
for their selection, including a description of their current mental
health research, its source and amount of funding.  A Biographical
Sketch and Other Support form (pages 6 and 7) must be included for
Knowledge of Doctoral Programs in Mental Health
Applicants should indicate how they have or will acquire, maintain,
and make use of information about appropriate university programs for
fellows supported by the award.  Applicants should provide detailed
information about appropriate programs.  Such information must
include details about current faculty mental health research, mental
health research-related curricula, and other elements of the training
programs and resources available to students at these universities.
A list of potential training institutions with current information on
their NIMH, or other, funded mental health research projects is
required.  Applicants must also describe resources and processes they
have for obtaining up-to-date information and for sharing this
information with potential fellows, including full descriptions of
the mechanisms that have been or will be established to work with
prospective fellows to help them in selecting graduate programs with
strong mental health research.
Program Faculty
The applicant must list proposed training faculty members, their
primary department and university affiliation, and their role and
percent of effort in the proposed program.  The applicant must also
describe each faculty member's research that is relevant to the
program, indicating how trainees will participate in this research.
The extent to which participating faculty members cooperated,
interacted, and collaborated in the past must be described.  The
applicant must also list past and current students for whom each
faculty member has served or is serving as thesis advisor or sponsor,
titles of the student's research project, and for past students,
their current positions/sources of support.  Each trainee must have a
faculty advisor who is actively engaged in mental health research.  A
Biographical Sketch and information about relevant research support
should be included for each current or proposed faculty member.
Responsible Conduct of Research
The applicant must describe plans to provide trainees with
instruction on scientific integrity and ethical principles in
research, and include a description of both formal (courses,
seminars, etc.) and informal training that will be provided.
Payback Requirements
Pursuant to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Revitalization
Act of 1993, individuals who receive support as NRSA predoctoral
fellows under awards activated on or after June 10, 1993, do not
incur a service payback obligation.
Conditions of Award
All trainees appointed to an MRFP Award must meet MRFP eligibility
requirements.  The applicant organization must submit to NIMH a
completed Statement of Appointment form (PHS 2271), which includes a
Statement of Non-Delinquency on Federal Debt, at the time a trainee
is appointed.  No funds may be provided to a trainee until this
document is submitted.  At the end of the total support period for
each individual trainee, the applicant must submit a Termination
Notice (PHS 416-7) to NIMH.  Failure to submit the required forms in
a timely fashion may result in an expenditure disallowance or a delay
in continuation funding.
All fellowship appointments awarded under the MRFP are made for
full-time research training.  Full-time training is considered to be
a minimum of 40 hours per week.  Appointees may use some of their
time in course studies and clinical duties if such work is closely
related to and necessary for the research training experience.  No
appointment for less than 12 months may be made without prior
documented approval.
An MRFP appointment may not be held concurrently with another
federally sponsored fellowship or similar Federal award which
provides a stipend or otherwise duplicates provisions of the MRFP
award.  An appointee may, however, accept concurrent educational
remuneration from the Department of Veterans Affairs and loans from
Federal funds.
Trainees in academic institutions  may receive the same vacations and
holidays available to other full-time graduate students in their
program.  The leave policy for NRSA recipients was described in the
NIH Guide Vol. 22, No. 38, October 22, 1993.
Annual Stipends
The annual stipend for predoctoral individuals at all levels is
$10,008 for 12 months of training.  The stipend is intended to help
provide for the minority trainee's living expenses during the period
of training.  The stipend is not a payment for services performed.
Trainees are not considered to be employees of the PHS or their
sponsoring organization.
Supplementation of the MRFP stipend from non-Federal funds is
permitted.  Federal funds may be used for supplementation only if
explicitly authorized by the program from which such funds are
derived.  No PHS grant funds may be used for supplementation.  This
is not intended to discourage in any way the use of Federal loan
funds.  This additional support may be provided to the trainee
without obligation by the sponsoring institution or may be
conditioned on his or her performance of certain services such as
teaching or serving as a laboratory assistant.  Trainees may earn
salaries or wages for services rendered under PHS grants, provided
such employment is unrelated to the training experience and done on a
limited, part-time basis (in excess of the 40 hour weekly minimum for
the training program).  Such compensation is not considered stipend
supplementation.  Under no circumstances, however, may the service
requirements detract from or prolong the training.
Taxability of Stipends
Internal Revenue Code Section 117 applies to the tax treatment of all
scholarships and fellowships.  Under that section, degree candidates
may exclude from gross income (for tax purposes) any amount used for
tuition and related expenses such as fees, books, supplies, and
equipment required for courses of instruction at a qualified
educational organization.
The taxability of stipends, however, in no way alters the
relationship between NRSA trainees and institutions.  NRSA stipends
are not considered salaries.  In addition, trainees supported under
the NRSA are not considered to be in an employer-employee
relationship with the NIH or the institution at which they are
pursuing research training.
It must be emphasized that the interpretation and implementation of
the tax laws are the domain of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and
the courts.  PHS takes no position on what the status may be for a
particular taxpayer, and it does not have the authority to dispense
advice to trainees or institutions about their tax liability.
Individuals should consult their local IRS office about the
applicability of the law to their situation and for information on
their tax obligations.
Other Allowable Costs
In addition to stipends, the applicant organization may request funds
for tuition, fees, and self-only health insurance.  Such costs will
be provided according to the policy published in the NIH Guide, Vol.
25, No. 2, February 2, 1996.  Applicants may also request funds for
certain types of travel for trainees (e.g., to attend professional
meetings and other meetings directly related to their training).  The
award will cover actual indirect costs or eight percent of allowable
direct costs (whichever is less).  Applications from State and local
government agencies may request full indirect cost reimbursement.
The applicant organization may also request funds for other related
costs such as personnel, consultants, supplies, travel, reproduction
and printing costs, rental equipment, minor equipment items, and
other items which are directly related to the recruitment, selection,
placement, and monitoring of training of the students.  Funds for
such "other related costs" are intended to provide the applicant with
only partial support for the costs of the proposed research training
and for meeting the costs of trainee research.  Ordinarily, under
National Research Service awards, up to $1,500 per predoctoral
trainee is provided for the other related costs which are deemed
essential to carry out the training program.  However, the applicant
may request funds exceeding this amount if they are essential for
fulfilling the purposes of the grant and the need for additional
funds is clearly documented and justified by the applicant.  Such
requests will be considered by the peer review committee and the
National Advisory Mental Health Council.
Funds may be used only for those expenses which are directly related
and necessary to the research training and must be expended in
conformance with DHHS cost principles, the PHS Grants Policy
Statement and conditions set forth in this document.
All budget items must be fully identified and justified at the level
requested (e.g., Advisory Committee costs, the Training Program
Director's salary, telephone and printing costs).  The type and
amount of fiscal or in-kind costs to be contributed by the grantee
organization should also be detailed.  Grantees are expected to be
familiar with and comply with applicable cost policies.
Progress Reports (Competing Continuation Applications Only)
General directions are on pages V-6 and V-7 of the form PHS 398
application kit.  A Biographical Sketch and Other Support form (pages
6 and 7) must be provided for each faculty member/mentor.
Competing continuation applications must submit a progress report
covering the development of the program to date and must submit
complete information on the placement and career development
performance of all trainees who were supported by the previous award.
A table should be provided listing each trainee, the period of time
supported, the trainee's minority status, the department and
university attended, the trainee's current educational status, date
doctoral degree was awarded, dissertation title, areas of mental
health research, current employment, any funded research (title,
source and amount of funding), and publications.  The name,
department, and funded mental health research (title, source, and
amount of funding) of each trainee's major advisor should also be
For the program as a whole, an overall summary should be provided of:
(a) minorities recruited, (b) placement in departments with strong
mental health research, (c) rates of retention and attrition, (d)
rates of completion of the doctorate, (e) publications, and (f) the
total number of trainees engaged in mental health teaching and
research.  A "success rate" should be calculated by dividing the
total number of trainees appointed (minus those still in training)
into the total number actively engaged in mental health teaching and
research.  The progress report should also detail the actual
expenditures of the most recent complete grant year for Program
Director, secretarial personnel, travel, advisory committee,
telephone, postage, stipends, tuition, trainee travel, etc.
Human Subjects and Vertebrate Animals Requirements
While the MRFP applicant will not itself provide research training,
the applicant organization must retain overall responsibility for
compliance with all applicable regulations and must assure that all
organizations which do provide the training have complied with the
following Human Subjects and Vertebrate Animals regulations:
Human Subjects:  The DHHS regulations for the protection of human
subjects provide a systematic means, based on established
internationally recognized ethical principles, to safeguard the
rights and welfare of individuals who participate as subjects in
research activities supported or conducted by the DHHS.  The
regulations require that the grantee organization and/or the
organizations where the MRFP trainees will receive their training
establish and maintain appropriate policies and procedures for the
protection of human subjects. These regulations, 45 CFR 46,
Protection of Human Subjects, are available from the Office for
Protection from Research Risks, National Institutes of Health,
Bethesda, Maryland  20892.
An organization proposing to provide research training to a student
funded by this MRFP must file with the Office for Protection from
Research Risks (OPRR), and OPRR must approve, an Assurance of
Compliance if the research training program includes nonexempt
research involving human subjects.  As part of this Assurance, which
commits the organization to comply with the DHHS regulations, the
organization must appoint an Institution Review Board (IRB) which is
required to review and approve all nonexempt research activities
involving human subjects.
Vertebrate Animals:  The "PHS Policy on Humane Care and Use of
Laboratory Animals by Awardee Institutions" requires that grantee
organizations and/or the organizations where the MRFP trainees will
receive their training establish and maintain appropriate policies
and procedures to ensure the humane care and use of live vertebrate
animals involved in research, research training, and biological
testing activities which are supported by the PHS.  All institutions
are required to comply, as applicable, with the Animal Welfare Act as
amended (7 USC 2131 et sec.), and other Federal statutes and
regulations relating to the care and use of laboratory animals.
These documents are available from the Office for Protection from
Research Risks, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland
An organization proposing to provide research training involving
vertebrate animals to the student funded by this MRFP must file with
the Office for Protection from Research Risks (OPRR), and OPRR must
approve, an Animal Welfare Assurance.  As part of this Assurance,
which commits the organization to comply with the PHS policy, the
organization must appoint an Institutional Animal Care and Use
Committee (IACUC) which, among other responsibilities, is required to
review and approve all research activities involving vertebrate
It is the policy of the NIH that women and members of minority groups
and their subpopulations must be included in all NIH supported
biomedical and behavioral research projects involving human subjects,
unless a clear and compelling rationale and justification is provided
that inclusion is inappropriate with respect to the health of the
subjects or the purpose of the research.  This new policy results
from the NIH Revitalization Act of 1993 (Section 492B of Public Law
103-43) and supersedes and strengthens the previous policies
(Concerning the Inclusion of Women in Study Populations, and
Concerning the Inclusion of Minorities in Study Populations) which
have been in effect since 1990.  The new policy contains some
provisions that are substantially different from the 1990 policies.
All investigators proposing research involving human subjects should
read the "NIH Guidelines for Inclusion of Women and Minorities as
Subjects in Clinical Research," which have been published in the
Federal Register of March 28, 1994 (FR 59 14508-14513), and reprinted
in the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts, Volume 23, Number 11,
March 18, 1994.
Investigators may also obtain copies of the policy from the program
staff listed under INQUIRIES.  Program staff may also provide
additional relevant information concerning the policy.
Prospective applicants are asked to submit, by August 1, 1996, a
letter of intent that includes a descriptive title of the proposed
training program, the name, address, and telephone number of the
Program Director, the identities of other key personnel and
participating institutions, and the number and title of the RFA in
response to which the application may be submitted.  The letter
should also summarize other key features of the proposed application,
including the goals of the program and other relevant training
issues, indicate the faculty involved, and provide an estimate of
annual costs.  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 NIMH staff to
estimate the potential review workload, avoid conflict of interest in
the review, and offer consultation and technical assistance with
respect to the proposed plan.  The letter of intent is to be sent to
the program staff member listed under INQUIRIES.
The research grant application form PHS 398 (rev. 5/95) is to be used
in applying for these grants.  These forms are available at  most
institutional offices of sponsored research and from the Office of
Extramural Outreach and Information Resources, National Institutes of
Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, MSC 7910, Bethesda, MD 20892-7910;
telephone (301) 710-0267; fax (301) 480-0525; Email:
Applicants must use and follow the instructions for the Institutional
NRSA section of the form PHS 398. Applications must be complete,
providing all information called for by the instructions.
The RFA label available in the PHS 398 (rev. 5/95) application form
must be affixed to the bottom of the face page of the original copy
of the application.  Failure to use this label could result in
delayed processing of the application such that it may not reach the
review committee in time for review.  In addition, the RFA number and
title ("RFA MH-96-001 NIMH MRFP - Mental Health Nursing") must be
typed in section 2 of the face page of the application form and the
YES box must be marked.
Submit a signed, typewritten original of the application, including
the Checklist, and three signed photocopies, in one package to:
6701 ROCKLEDGE DRIVE, ROOM 1040 - MSC 7710
BETHESDA, MD  20892-7710
BETHESDA, MD  20817 (for courier/overnight mail service)
At the time of submission, two additional copies of the application
must be sent to:
Henry J. Haigler, Ph.D.
Division of Extramural Activities
National Institute of Mental Health
Parklawn Building, Room 9-C-04
5600 Fishers Lane
Rockville, MD  20857
Application Receipt and Review Schedule
Applications will be accepted and reviewed only according to the
following schedule:
Letter of Intent Receipt Date:  August 1, 1996
Application Receipt Date:       September 17, 1996
Review Meeting Date:            December 1996
NIMH Council Meeting:           January 1997
Earliest Possible Start Date:   July 1, 1997
Applications must be received by September 17, 1996.  If an
application is received after that date, it will be returned to the
applicant without review.  The Division of Research Grants (DRG), the
central receipt point for applications to all Public Health Service
(PHS) programs, will not accept any application in response to this
RFA that is essentially the same as one currently pending initial
review, unless the applicant withdraws the pending application.  The
DRG will not accept any application that is essentially the same as
one already reviewed.  This does not preclude the submission of
substantial revisions of applications already reviewed, but such
applications must include an introduction.
Applications should be of high quality and responsive to the stated
purpose of this announcement.  Upon receipt, applications will be
reviewed for completeness by the DRG and for responsiveness by NIMH
staff.  Incomplete and/or non-responsive applications will be
returned to the applicant without further consideration.
Applications that are complete and responsive to the Request for
Applications will be evaluated for scientific, technical, and
educational merit by an appropriate peer review group comprised
primarily of nongovernment scientists and convened in accordance with
the review criteria stated below.  As part of the initial merit
review, all applications will receive a written critique and undergo
a process in which only those applications deemed to have the highest
scientific merit, generally the top half of applications under
review, will be discussed and assigned a priority score.  Application
will also receive a second level review by the National Advisory
Mental Health Council.
Applicants should not assume that site visits will be made. Site
visits are generally made only in those instances where information
cannot be provided in the application or readily obtained by mail or
telephone.  All decisions regarding site visits will be made by NIMH
review staff.
Applicants will receive a copy of the summary statement of the review
of their application and will be notified of final action on the
application by an award notice and/or by a letter.
Major considerations in the review are the breadth, depth, and
quality of the plan for implementing the MRFP; qualifications,
capability, and experience of the Program Director and the
organization to implement the plan; qualifications of the MRFP
Advisory Committee; plans for recruiting, selecting, and placing
trainees in appropriate graduate departments and programs; and
adequacy of the facilities and resources.  Detailed review criteria
are listed below:
Program Plan
o  Adequacy, strength, feasibility, and creativity of the plan to
recruit underrepresented minority students nationally, including
written and personal contact with potential applicants
o  Establishment of an appropriate MRFP Advisory Committee, with
current mental health research grants, to select and advise students
concerning doctoral study in mental health nursing emphasizing mental
health research, including selection criteria for the committee
o  Establishment of a plan to develop and refine appropriate criteria
for selection of underrepresented minority students, including the
development and testing of innovative ways to recruit and select
successful students
o  Demonstrated knowledge of doctoral level training programs in
mental health nursing emphasizing mental health research which can be
used to provide meaningful advice to students concerning the choice
of graduate programs with strong mental health research, and a plan
for the dissemination of this information to student applicants for
MRFP award
o  Development of plans to appropriately place students in doctoral
program with strong mental health research programs, including
currently funded mental health research grants
o  Methods for monitoring student progress, including early
identification and remedy of student problems
o  Effectiveness of plans to provide continuing contact, support, and
supervision to individual trainees by the Program Director, including
both the methods for doing so and the frequency of contact, as well
as the adequacy of the amount of time to be devoted to individual
trainee support and supervision by the Program Director
o  Adequacy of plans to facilitate dissertation research in mental
health, to provide support for dissertation expenses, and to ensure
the completion of excellent dissertations in mental health
o  Provision of enrichment experiences, professional socialization,
and networks beyond those in the local setting
o  Methods of monitoring and reporting on the quality of the training
provided by doctoral programs, including research involvement, mental
health emphases, and ethical conduct in scientific investigation
o  Adequacy of plans for evaluating the MRFP, including methods for
assessing the success of the program in increasing the number of
underrepresented minority students seeking research careers in Mental
Health Nursing
Program Leadership and Personnel
o  Qualifications and experience of the Program Director in mental
health research and administration
o  Appropriateness, experience, and areas of substantive mental
health research of the MRFP Advisory Committee
o  Appropriate qualifications and experience of other applicant
organization staff for implementing the program
o  Appropriateness of the Program Director's time devoted to specific
tasks and to the total program.  A minimum of 25 percent of the
Program Director's time must be committed to implementing the
Program Faculty
o  Adequacy and strength of the faculty's mental health research (as
indicated, for example, by peer reviewed research publications and
amount of research funding) that can provide a strong context for
research training
o  Quality and appropriateness of the plans for trainee participation
in ongoing faculty mental health research
o  Quality of training faculty (as evidenced, for example, by
publication record, scientific accomplishments, experience in
providing research training, and success in placing former trainees
in research positions)
o  Quality of mentoring as indicated by the faculty training record
in mental health research
o  Appropriateness of the proposed budget
o  Contribution of the organization or others to the program in kind
or in funds
Facilities and Resources
o  Availability of and access to facilities and resources needed to
implement the plan
o  Extent of institutional or organizational support for the program,
including assurances that the participating training sites will
comply with the required regulations and program
Specific Criteria for Competing Continuation Applications
o  Effectiveness of the existing program as indicated by the progress
report on the development of the program and the past record of: (a)
minority recruitment, (b) placement in departments with strong mental
health research, (c) rates of retention in graduate work, (d) rates
of completion of doctorates, and (e) subsequent careers in mental
health teaching and research of the fellows.
An application will be selected for funding primarily on the basis of
scientific merit as determined by peer review, programmatic
priorities and balance, and the availability of funds.
Inquiries concerning this RFA are encouraged.  Applicants are
strongly encouraged to contact NIMH staff for technical assistance
and information concerning current program priorities before applying
for an award.  The opportunity to clarify any issues or questions
from potential applicants is welcome.
Direct inquiries regarding programmatic issues to:
George Niederehe, Ph.D.
Division of Clinical and Treatment Research
National Institute of Mental Health
Parklawn Building, Room 18-101
5600 Fishers Lane
Rockville, MD  20857
Telephone:  (301) 443-3264
FAX:  (301) 594-6784
Email:  gniedere@nih.gov
Direct inquiries regarding fiscal matters to:
Diana S. Trunnell
Grants Management Branch
National Institute of Mental Health
Parklawn Building, Room 7C-08
5600 Fishers Lane
Rockville, MD  20857
Telephone:  (301) 443-2805
FAX:  (301) 443-6885
Email:  Diana_Trunnell@nih.gov
This program is described in the Catalog of Federal Domestic
Assistance No. 93.282.  Awards are made under authorization of the
Public Health Service Act, Title IV, Part A (Public Law 78-410, as
amended by Public Law 99-158, 42 USC 241 and 285) and administered
under PHS grants policies and Federal Regulations 42 CFR 66 and 45
CFR Part 74.  This program is not subject to the intergovernmental
review requirements of Executive Order 12372 or Health Systems Agency
review. Awards will be administered under PHS grants policy as stated
in the Public Health Service Grants Policy Statement (April 1, 1994).
The PHS strongly encourages all grant and contract recipients to
provide a smoke-free workplace and promote the nonuse of all tobacco
products.  In addition, Public Law 103-227, the Pro- Children Act of
1994, prohibits smoking in certain facilities (or in some cases, any
portion of a facility) in which regular or routine education,
library, day care, health care or early childhood development
services are provided to children.  This is consistent with the PHS
mission to protect and advance the physical and mental health of the
American people.

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