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PEER Health Home > Proposal Review Criteria

Full Proposal Review Criteria                                                         
All full-proposals will be evaluated based on the following criteria:
Overall Impact
Reviewers will provide an overall impact/priority score to reflect their assessment of the likelihood for the project to address an important problem or barrier in the implementation of child survival programs that target accelerated reduction of under-five mortality. Or in the case of applications from Indonesia, overall impact or priority score will reflect responsiveness to priority health areas specified in this PEER Health RFA to support the Indonesian focus on catalyzing action to accelerate Indonesia’s progress toward achievement of Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) 4, 5 and 6; enhancing the use of quality research and evidence in policy and programming; and partnering to address regional and global infectious disease threats.
Scored Review Criteria
Reviewers will consider each of the five review criteria below in the determination of scientific and technical merit, and assign 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. 
1.Significance: Does the project address an important implementation science challenge for reducing under-five child mortality, child survival in at least one of the research priority areas outlined in the Child Survival section of this RFA? For Indonesian applications, does the application address Indonesian priority health areas? If the aims of the project are achieved, (1) how will scientific knowledge, technical capability, implementation and/or clinical practice be improved; (2) how will current USAID or partner country programmatic practices be influenced; and (3) how will they impact the health of the population?
 Full Proposal Details

  Download complete RFA as PDF.

  Applicants who have questions
  after reviewing the materials on
  this Web site are encouraged to
  contact PEER Health staff by e-mail 

2. Investigator: Are the PI(s) and NIH-supported partner qualified to achieve the research goals of the project by having the relevant education, experience, training and/or accomplishments? If the project is collaborative (multi-PIs or co-investigators) do the investigators have complementary and integrated expertise? Will the participation of the NIH-supported collaborator enhance the proposed project? Does it appear that both sides are committed to working together and have a clear plan for how that collaboration will be carried out? How will the research, expertise, and/or resources of the NIH investigator be leveraged in the PEER Health project?
3. Innovation: Does the proposal challenge and seek to shift current practice paradigms by researching novel approaches or methodologies, instrumentation, or interventions? Does the project challenge existing paradigms or programmatic practice; or address an innovative hypothesis or critical barrier to success of child health interventions or policies? Does the project incorporate new approaches or implementation science methods to answer questions related to program design and incorporation of scientific advances in program implementation of child health interventions? Will answering the research question add significantly to the knowledge base related to child health and/or maternal/child care?
4. Approach: Are the overall strategy, methodology, and analyses well-reasoned and appropriate to accomplish the specific aims of the project? Does the proposal discuss demonstrable or planned collaboration with USAID missions and/or programs in-country to conduct the research and implement the results? Does the proposal include a data dissemination and utilization plan including a description of activities to promote the uptake of research findings? Does the plan discuss the application(s) of the research findings and how the research findings will be disseminated to key stakeholders, utilized to improve child health policies and programs, and how these activities will be achieved within the study timeline?
5. Environment: Will the project benefit from unique features of the local environment, subject populations (including but not limited to women, children, and marginalized groups), or collaborative arrangements (including but not limited to NGO’s that implement health programs)? Will there be other networks or resources leveraged to complete the project and how integral are they to the research plan? Will the project strengthen research capacity in-country by involving a broader group of students and local researchers? Are the institutional support, equipment and other physical resources available to the investigators adequate for the project proposed?
Additional Review Criteria
Reviewers will also evaluate the following items as part of the overall impact/priority score.  
1. Appropriate Representation: Reviewers will evaluate how well the proposal describes the participation of women, racial/ethnic minorities, other marginalized populations, and persons with disabilities in the planning, organization, and implementation of the proposed project.
2. Protections for Human Subjects: For research that involves human subjects but does not involve one of the  categories of research that are exempted under 25 CFR Part 225, 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 research that are exempt under 25 CFR Part 225, 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 Human Subjects Protection and Inclusion Guidelines.
3. Inclusion of Women, Minorities, and Children: When the proposed project involves clinical research, the committee will evaluate the proposed plans for considering the inclusion of minorities and members of both genders, as well as the inclusion of children. For additional information on review of the Inclusion section, please refer to the Human Subjects Protection and Inclusion Guidelines
4. Vertebrate Animals: When the proposed project involves vertebrate animals, reviewers will evaluate the proposed plans to assure the humane treatment of animals involved in the research. The applicant must agree to comply with the PHS Policy or provide evidence that acceptable standards for the humane care and use of the animals in the PHS-conducted or supported activities will be met. Reviewers will bring any concerns to the attention of the Scientific Review Officer. For additional guidance, please refer to the Worksheet for Review of the Vertebrate Animal Section (VAS).
5. 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.Reviewers will bring any concerns to the attention of the Scientific Review Officer.
Additional Review Considerations
Reviewers will also consider the following items, as part of the overall impact/priority score. 
1. 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).
2. Resource Sharing Plans: What percentage of the PI’s budget come from leveraging or cost sharing from NIH networks and other non-NIH resources?
3. Budget and Period of Support: Is the project budget requested reasonable? If sub-awards are requested to other institutions besides the PI’s, are they consistent with the PEER Health project goals? If the sub awardees are NIH-supported or located in countries ineligible for Health funding, is the requested amount reasonable and critical to the success of the PEER Health project? Please note recommendations where decreasing or eliminating specific budget items is possible due to financial constraints.
Required Attachments:  Must be properly submitted and will be considered during the review.