Disparities Elimination through Coordinated Interventions to Prevent and Control Heart and Lung Disease Risk (DECIPHeR) - Research Coordinating Center (RCC) (U24 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)

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Frequently Asked Questions for DECIPHeR RCC (RFA-HL-20-004)

Q1. When are applications due?

A1. A change in the application receipt dates for the two DECIPHeR FOAs was announced in two separate NIH Notices (see NOT-HL-19-710 and NOT-HL-19-703). The receipt dates were updated to May 17, 2019 and December 2, 2019, pending availability of funds. Applications must be submitted by 5:00 PM local time of the applicant organization.

Q2. Where can I find the webinar slides from Monday, April 15, 2019?

A2. Here you will find the webinar slides for the DECIPHeR U24 FOA RFA-HL-20-004. Likewise, the link to the webinar slides for DECIPHeR UG3/UH3 FOA RFA-HL-20-003 is found here.

Q3. Where do the sites’ responsibilities end and the RCC’s begin in terms of data collection?

A3. The RCC will play a central role in organization, management, and data analysis, which will require collaboration with the UG3/UH3 awardees. Each UG3/UH3 awardee site will be responsible for collecting and storing local data. Key actions from the RCC include, but are not limited to, promoting standardized data collection, monitoring study data for quality and accuracy, and developing common data elements.

Q4. If we submit an MPI application, do we budget for these additional people to attend the annual meetings?

A4. Yes.

Q5. What can the $75K for skills development pay for?

A5. These funds can be used to support activities, as well as provide resources, that promote skills development and capacity building among participants from each of the DECIPHeR project sites.

Q6. Do the indirect costs from subcontracts become part of the overall direct costs, or are they added to the overall direct costs?

A6. The indirect costs from subcontracts should be included as a portion of the overall direct costs for the project.

Q7. How should I submit my application?

A7. Applications must be submitted electronically. Applicants should follow the instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide, except where instructed to do otherwise [in this FOA (Section IV. Application and Submission Information) or in a Notice from NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts].

Q8. Am I required to submit a letter of intent?

A8. A letter of intent is not required and it does not enter into the review of a subsequent application. 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.

Q9. Does the application have a page limit?

A9. Yes. All page limitations are described in the SF424 Application Guide and the Table of Page Limits must be followed.

Q10. Can an applicant submit an applicant for both the DECIPHeR Research Coordinating Center (RCC) and a UG3/UH3?

A10. Yes.

Q11. Where will my application be reviewed?

A11. Applications will be evaluated for scientific and technical merit by (an) appropriate Scientific Review Group(s) convened by NHLBI, 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.

Q12. How many RCC awards does NHLBI intend to Fund?

A12. The NHLBI intends to fund one research coordinating center. This award is contingent upon NIH appropriations and the submission of a sufficient number of meritorious applications.

Q13. Are foreign institutions eligible to apply?

A13. Non-domestic (non-U.S.) Entities (Foreign Institutions) are not eligible to apply. Non-domestic (non-U.S.) components of U.S. Organizations are eligible to apply. Foreign components, as defined in the NIH Grants Policy Statement, are allowed.

Q14. Are applications with multiple PIs permitted?

A14. Yes. 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.

Q15. Can an organization submit more than one application?

A15. Yes. 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.

Q16. Are letters of support required? 

A16. Applicants are encouraged to provide letters of resource support specific to the RCC, including support provided by the applicant institution and partner organizations that will enhance the potential for success. Examples of such support would include, but are not limited to, institution-funded staff time and effort, donated equipment and space, providing free and open access to tools, web space, databases, workflow processes, logistical resources or other resource investments.

Q17. As the DECIPHeR research alliance is developed, will individual awardees of the different grants be required to work together?

A17. 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 in this FOA under Section VI. Award Administration Information

Q18. For budgeting purposes, should applicants anticipate multiple visits to each of the proposed 8 sites? 

A18. It is anticipated that the DECIPHeR RCC will coordinate activities across all of the DECIPHeR projects, including, but not limited to, coordinating and managing in-person and virtual network steering committee meetings and working groups. Applicants should present a detailed budget for the DECIPHeR RCC for activities related to coordinating the DECIPHeR network administration and research site supervision. As noted in Section IV. Application and Submission Information of this FOA, all instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed.

Q19. How often with the DECIPHeR network (DECIPHeR UG3/UH3 awardees and the RCC awardee) meet over the course of the proposed 7 year period of performance?

A19. It is anticipated that representatives from the DECIPHeR UG3/UH3 and RCC awardees will meet at least one time per year. In YEAR 1, there will be a two-day, start-up meeting that will take place in the Washington, DC area, and representatives from each UG3/UH3 grant and the 1 RCC awardee are expected to attend. In the Year 2 and beyond (until the end of the award), DECIPHeR network meetings will continue to take place annually and each of the DECIPHeR activity sites will co-host an annual meeting on a rotating basis.

Q20. What additional guidance can you share with the applicants as it pertains to budgeting for the required meetings?

A20. The specific budget guidance is included in each FOA under Section IV. Application and Submission Information. In order to provide cost clarifications for the FOA required meetings, it should be noted that application budgets for UG3/UH3 and RCC applicants must include funds for the PD/PI and two additional key personnel to participate in a two-day, start-up meeting in the Washington, DC area (e.g. Bethesda, Maryland at the NIH) during the first year of the award. For YEAR 2 and beyond until the end of the award, budgets from RCC applicants should include costs to both participate and host each annual meeting at one of the UG3/UH3 sites on a rotating basis. Moreover, budgets from UG3/UH3 applicants should include costs to 1) participate in every annual meeting held in Years 2-7, and 2) host one annual meeting at their location. UG3/UH3 applicants should add the costs for hosting the annual meeting to their YEAR 3 budget request.

Q21. Is the RCC awardee expected to participate in the Community Engagement meetings?

A21. In the RCC FOA (RFA-HL-20-004: Section IV. Application and Submission Information), it states that applications should budget for local community meetings or other appropriate activities. It is anticipated that applicants will describe their proposed level of participation in these meetings and/or related activities, as well as provide the appropriate justification and rationale.