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Writing a Winning Grant Proposal
Understanding the Federal Program Descriptions

Content provided by the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance
93.361 Nursing Research

FEDERAL AGENCY:

NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES

AUTHORIZATION:

Public Health Service Act, Sections 301, 483, 484, and 487, as amended, Public Law 99-158; Small Business Research and Development Act of 1992, Public Law 102-564.
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The National Institute of Nursing Research supports clinical and basic research to establish a scientific basis for the care of individuals across the life span from management of patients during illness and recovery to the reduction of risks for disease and disability and the promotion of healthy lifestyles. According to its broad mandate, the Institute seeks to understand and ease the symptoms of acute and chronic illness, to prevent or delay the onset of disease or disability or slow its progression, to find effective approaches to achieving and sustaining good health, and to improve the clinical settings in which care is provided. The NINR's research extends to problems encountered by patients, families, and caregivers. It also emphasizes the special needs of at-risk and underserved populations. These efforts are crucial in translating scientific advances into cost-effective health care that does not compromise quality. NINR accomplishes its mission by supporting grants to universities and other research organizations as well as by conducting research intramural at laboratories in Bethesda, Maryland. The research fosters multi-disciplinary collaborations to ensure a comprehensive approach to research on illness and disabling conditions. This approach is especially relevant in research aimed at long-term care for the elderly, the special needs of women across the life span, bioethical issues related to genetic testing and counseling, biobehavioral aspects of managing the prevention and treatment of infectious diseases, and environmental influences on risk factors related to chronic illnesses. In addition, the Institute supports comprehensive research training programs to prepare individuals with requisite interdisciplinary skills to conduct nursing research. Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program: To expand and improve the SBIR program; to increase private sector commercialization of innovations derived from Federal research and development; to increase small business participation in Federal research and development; and to foster and encourage participation of socially and economically disadvantaged mall business concerns and women-owned small business concerns in technological innovation Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) program: To stimulate and foster scientific and technological innovation through cooperative research and development carried out between small business concerns and research institutions; to foster technology transfer between small business concerns and research institutions; to increase private sector commercialization of innovations derived from Federal research and development; and to foster and encourage participation of socially and economically disadvantaged small business concerns and women-owned small business concerns in technological innovation. Centers Program: To promote interdisciplinary research, offer an environment for research training and career development, and concentrate research through Core Centers for Nursing Research.

TYPES OF ASSISTANCE:

Project Grants.
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USES AND USE RESTRICTIONS:

Research Grants: Funds may be used for salaries, consultation, equipment, travel and other usual costs, subject to Federal regulations applicable to the grant. National Research Service Awards (NRSAs) (Individual): Awards are made directly to individuals for research training in specified areas related to the mission of NINR. NRSAs (Institutional): Grants may be made to institutions to enable them to accept individuals for research training. Each individual who receives a NRSA postdoctoral fellowship or traineeship is obligated upon termination of the award to comply with certain service and payback provisions. SBIR Phase I grants: (of approximately 6-months' duration) are to establish the technical merit and feasibility of a proposed research effort that may lead to a commercial product or process. Only Phase I awardees are eligible to apply for Phase II support. STTR Phase I grants (normally of 1-year duration) are to determine the scientific, technical, and commercial merit and feasibility of the proposed cooperative effort that has potential for commercial application. Phase II funding is based on results of research initiated in Phase I and scientific and technical merit and commercial potential of Phase II application.

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS:

Applicant Eligibility:   Research Grants: Any corporation, public or private institution or agency, or other legal entity, either nonprofit or for-profit, may apply. NRSAs (Individual): An applicant must be a registered professional nurse with either a baccalaureate and/or a master's degree in nursing or a related field and must be a citizen of the United States or lawfully admitted for permanent residence. Those on temporary or student visas are not eligible. NRSAs (Institutional): An eligible institution must be capable of providing predoctoral and/or postdoctoral research training opportunities for nurses. SBIR grants: can be awarded only to domestic small businesses (entities that are independently owned and operated for profit; are not dominant in the field in which research is being proposed; and have no more than 500 employees). Primary employment (more than one-half time) of the principal investigator must be with the small business at the time of award and during the conduct of the proposed project. In both Phase I and Phase II, the research must be performed in the United States or its possessions. To be eligible for funding, a grant application must be reviewed for scientific merit and program relevance by a scientific review group and a national advisory council. STTR grants can be awarded only to domestic small business concerns (entities that are independently owned and operated for profit, are not dominant in the field in which research is proposed and have no more than 500 employees) which "partner" with a research institution in cooperative research and development. At least 40 percent of the project is to be performed by the small business concern and at least 30 percent by the research institution. In both Phase I and Phase II, the research must be performed in the U.S. and its possessions. To be eligible for funding, a grant application must be approved for scientific merit and program relevance by a scientific review group and a national advisory council.

Beneficiary Eligibility:   Individuals and public or private institutions.

Credentials/Documentation:   Each applicant for research projects must present a research plan and furnish evidence that scientific competence, facilities, equipment, and supplies are appropriate to carry out the plan. NRSAs (Individual): The applicant's academic record, research experience, citizenship, licensed as a registered nurse, and institutional sponsorship should be documented in the application. NRSAs (Institutional): The applicant organization must show the objectives, methodology and resources for the research training program, the qualifications and experience of directing staff, the criteria to be used in selecting individuals for awards, and detailed budget justification for the amount of grant funds requested. Costs will be determined in accordance with OMB Circular No. A-21, Cost Principles for Educational Institutions and OMB Circular No. A-87 for State and local governments. For-profit organizations' costs are determined in accordance with Subpart 31.2 of the Federal Acquisition Regulations. For other grantees, costs will be determined by HHS Regulations 45 CFR, Part 74, Subpart Q. For SBIR and STTR grants, applicant organization (small business concern) must present in a research plan an idea that has potential for commercialization and furnish evidence that scientific competence, experimental methods, facilities, equipment, and funds requested are appropriate to carry out the plan. Grant forms PHS 6246-1 and PHS 6246-2 are used to apply for SBIR Phase I and Phase II, respectively. Grant forms PHS 6246-3 and PHS 6246-4 are used to apply for STTR Phase I and Phase II, respectively.

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APPLICATION AND AWARD PROCESS:
Pre-application Coordination:   Not applicable. This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.

Application Procedure:   Research Grants: Applications must be prepared using the PHS 398 research grant application instructions and forms (rev. 5/2001). The PHS 398 is available at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/phs398/phs398.html in an interactive format. For further assistance contact GrantsInfo, Telephone (301) 435-0714, Email: GrantsInfo@nih.gov. NRSAs (Individual): Individuals must submit the application form, PHS Individual National Research Service Award (PHS 416-1, rev. 12/98), and include at least three letters of reference. If the applicant has been lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence, the appropriate item should be checked on the Face Page of the application. Applicants who have applied for and have not yet been granted admission as a permanent resident should check the Permanent resident block on the Face Page of the PHS 416-1 application, and also write in the word "pending." A notarized statement documenting legal admission for permanent residence must be submitted prior to the issuance of an award. SBIR and STTR: The PHS 398 research grant application (rev. 5/2001) must be used. Instructions and forms are available at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/phs398/phs398.html. Refer to Chapter VI for specific instructions for SBIR and STTR applications. Applications will be accepted on the dates listed on the first page of this PA. This version of PHS 398 is available in an interactive, searchable PDF and HTML format. The NIH will return applications that are not submitted on the 5/2001 version. For further assistance contact GrantsInfo, Telephone: (301) 435-0714, Email: GrantsInfo@nih.gov.

Award Procedure:   Research Grants and NRSAs (Institutional): All accepted applications are reviewed for scientific merit by an appropriate initial review group and then by a national advisory council. (Individual NRSA applications are not reviewed by council.) All applications favorably recommended compete for available funds on the basis of scientific merit and program emphasis. All accepted SBIR/STTR applications are evaluated for scientific and technical merit by an appropriate scientific peer review panel and by a national advisory council or board. All applications receiving a priority score compete for available SBIR/STTR set-aside funds on the basis of scientific and technical merit and commercial potential of the proposed research, program relevance, and program balance among the areas of research.

Deadlines:   Research Grants: February 1, June 1, and October 1. Renewals: March 1, July 1, and November 1. Individual NRSAs: April 5, August 5, and December 5. Institutional NRSA's: May 10 only. SBIR: April 1, August 1, and December 1. STTR: December 1 only.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time:   Research Grants: From 6 to 9 months. NRSAs: From 6 to 9 months. SBIR/STTR: About 7-1/2 months.

Appeals:   Research Grants: A principal investigator (P.I.) may question the substantive or procedural aspects of the review of his/her application by communicating with the staff of the NINR.

Renewals:   Research Grants: Renewal applications are accepted. NRSAs: Awards may be made for 1 to 5 years. No individual may receive more than 5 years of aggregate NRSA support beyond the predoctoral level, and no individual may receive NRSA support for more than 3 years of support beyond the postdoctoral level. Institutional awards may be renewed.

ASSISTANCE CONSIDERATIONS:

Formula and Matching Requirements:   This program has no statutory formula or matching requirements.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance:   Research Grants: Awards are usually made annually with no project periods to exceed 5 years in length. NRSAs: Institutional awards may be made for up to 5 years, and Individual awards may be made for up to 5 years at the predoctoral level, 3 years at postdoctoral level, and 2 years at senior level. SBIR: Normally, Phase I awards are for 6 months; normally, Phase II awards are for 2 years. STTR: Normally, Phase I awards are for 1 year; normally, Phase II awards are for 2 years.

POST ASSISTANCE REQUIREMENTS:

Reports:   Progress and fiscal financial status reports are required annually for continuing projects, and final reports on all projects are required 90 days after their conclusion. Recipients of NRSAs are required to file termination reports to ascertain compliance with the service and payback provisions.

Audits:   In accordance with the provisions of OMB Circular No. A- 133 (Revised, June 24, 1997), "Audits of States, Local Governments, and Nonprofit Organizations," nonfederal entities that expend financial assistance of $300,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Nonfederal entities that expend less than $300,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in Circular No. A-133. In addition, grants and cooperative agreements are subject to inspection and audits by DHHS and other Federal officials.

Records:   Records must be retained for 3 years or longer if not audited or audit findings have not been resolved.

FINANCIAL INFORMATION:

Account Identification:   75-0889-0-1-552.

Obligations:   (Research Project Grants) FY 01 $79,758,000; FY 02 est $89,698,000; and FY 03 est $98,220,000. (NRSAs) FY 01 $7,918,000; FY 02 est $9,224,000; and FY 03 est $9,316,000.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance:  
FY15 Research Grants: $40,371 to $1,839,402; average cost $380,451.
FY15 NRSA Individual Awards: $3,390 to $55,860 average cost of FTTP/Award $33,240.
FY15 NRSA Institutional Awards: $121,241 to $581,238; average cost of FTTP $314,357.

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PROGRAM ACCOMPLISHMENTS:
For fiscal year 2001, 303 competing research grant applications were received and 255 competing and noncompeting awards were made. For fiscal year 2002, an estimated 378 research grant applications and 283 competing and noncompeting awards are anticipated. For fiscal year 2003, an estimated 419 research grant applications and 292 competing and noncompeting awards are anticipated.

REGULATIONS, GUIDELINES, AND LITERATURE:

Research Grants: Grants will be available under the authority of and administered in accordance with the PHS Grants Policy Statement and Federal regulations at 42 CFR 52 and 42 USC 241; Omnibus Solicitation of the Public Health Service for Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Grant and Cooperative Agreement Applications. Omnibus Solicitation of the National Institutes of Health for Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Grant Applications.

INFORMATION CONTACTS:

Regional or Local Office:   Not applicable.

Headquarters Office:   Marguerite Littleton Kearney 31 Center Drive, Bethesda, Maryland 20892 Email: marguerite.kearney@nih.gov Phone: (301) 402-7932

Web Site Address:  
http://www.ninr.nih.gov/

EXAMPLES OF FUNDED PROJECTS:

1) Comparison Of Tailored Mammography Interventions; (2) Cardiovascular Health In Children And Youth; (3) Preoperative Pain, Immune Function, And Metastasis; (4) Nurse Managed Tobacco Cessation Intervention; (5) Rheumatoid Arthritis: Adherence Intervention Strategies; and (6) Urinary Incontinence Prevention--Reducing Birthing Risk Effectiveness of Prenatal Care.

CRITERIA FOR SELECTING PROPOSALS:

The major elements in evaluating proposals include assessments of: (1) Significance: Does this study address an important problem? If the aims of the application are achieved, how will scientific knowledge be advanced? What will be the effect of these studies on the concepts or methods that drive this field? (2) Approach: Are the conceptual framework, design, methods, and analyses adequately developed, well-integrated, and appropriate to the aims of the project? Does the applicant acknowledge potential problem areas and consider alternative tactics? (3) Innovation: Does the project employ novel concepts, approaches or method? Are the aims original and innovative? Does the project challenge existing paradigms or develop new methodologies or technologies? (4) Investigator: Is the investigator appropriately trained and well suited to carry out this work? Is the work proposed appropriate to the experience level of the principal investigator and other researchers (if any)? (5) Environment: Does the scientific environment in which the work will be done contribute to the probability of success? Do the proposed experiments take advantage of unique features of the scientific environment or employ useful collaborative arrangements? Is there evidence of institutional support? (6) the appropriateness of the proposed budget and duration in relation to the proposed research; and (7) the relevance and importance to announced program objectives. The following criteria will be used in considering the scientific and technical merit of SBIR/STTR Phase I grant applications: (1) The soundness and technical merit of the proposed approach; (2) the qualifications of the proposed principal investigator, supporting staff, and consultants; (3) the technological innovation of the proposed research; (4) the potential of the proposed research for commercial application; (5) the appropriateness of the budget requested; (6) the adequacy and suitability of the facilities and research environment; and (7) where applicable, the adequacy of assurances detailing the proposed means for (a) safeguarding human or animal subjects, and/or (b) protecting against or minimizing any adverse effect on the environment. Phase II grant applications will be reviewed based upon the following criteria: (1) The degree to which the Phase I objectives were met and feasibility demonstrated; (2) the scientific and technical merit of the proposed approach for achieving the Phase II objectives; (3) the qualifications of the proposed principal investigator, supporting staff, and consultants; (4) the technological innovation, originality, or societal importance of the proposed research; (5) the potential of the proposed research for commercial application; (6) the reasonableness of the budget requested for the work proposed; (7) the adequacy and suitability of the facilities and research environment; and (8) where applicable, the adequacy of assurances detailing the proposed means for (a)safeguarding human or animal subjects, and/or (b) protecting against or minimizing any adverse effect on the environment.

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