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Updates from MUSC's Offices of Research Administration


FY 2017 Kirschstein-NRSA Budgetary Levels

NIH Notice Number: NOT-OD-17-072 establishes the FY 2017 Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) Stipends, Tuition/Fees and Other Budgetary Levels.

From the Notice:

This revised Notice supersedes NOT-OD-16-062, and establishes stipend levels for fiscal year (FY) 2017 Kirschstein-NRSA awards for undergraduate and predoctoral trainees and fellows, as shown in the table below.  The Training Related Expenses and Institutional Allowances for predoctoral trainees and fellows and the Tuition and Fees for all educational levels remain unchanged.  

The budgetary categories described in this Notice apply only to Kirschstein-NRSA awards made with FY 2017 funds.  All FY 2017 awards previously issued using FY 2016 stipend levels (NOT-OD-16-062) will be revised to adjust stipends to the FY 2017 level.

Appointments to institutional training grants that have already been awarded in FY 2017 must be amended to reflect the FY 2017 stipend levels once the training grant award has been adjusted by the NIH.  Amended appointments must be submitted through xTrain in the eRA Commons.  Retroactive adjustments or supplementation of stipends or other budgetary categories with Kirschstein-NRSA funds for an award made prior to October 1, 2016 are not permitted.

Note: The FY 2017 stipend and other budgetary levels for postdoctoral trainees and fellows was issued on December 15, 2016: NOT-OD-17-003

Stipends for FY 2017
Effective with all Kirschstein-NRSA awards made on or after October 1, 2017, the following annual stipend levels apply to all individuals receiving support through institutional research training grants or individual fellowships, including the Maximizing Access to Research Career (MARC) and Building Infrastructure Leading to Diversity (BUILD) programs.

Undergraduates in the MARC and BUILD Programs:  For institutional training grants (T34, TL4), two stipend levels may be used for undergraduate candidates: Freshmen/Sophomores and Juniors/Seniors. 

Career Level

Stipend for FY 2017

Monthly Stipend

Freshmen/Sophomores

$8,988

$749

Juniors/Seniors

$12,588

$1,049

Predoctoral Trainees and Fellows:  For institutional training grants (T32, T35, T90, TL1) and individual fellowships (F30, F31, F99), one stipend level is used for all predoctoral candidates, regardless of the level of experience.

Career Level

Years of Experience

Stipend for FY 2017

Monthly Stipend

Predoctoral

All

$23,844

$1,987


Tuition and Fees, Training Related Expenses, and Institutional Allowance for Kirschstein-NRSA Recipients
The NIH will provide funds for Tuition and Fees, Training Related Expenses, and Institutional Allowance as detailed below.

A. Tuition and Fees

Undergraduate and Predoctoral Trainees and Fellows:  For institutional training grants (T32, T34, T35, T90, TL1, TL4) and individual fellowships (F30, F31, F99), an amount per predoctoral trainee equal to 60% of the level requested by the applicant institution, up to $16,000 per year, will be provided.  If the trainee or fellow is enrolled in a program that supports formally combined, dual-degree training (e.g., MD/PhD, DO/PhD, DDS/PhD, AuD/PhD, DVM/PhD), the amount provided per trainee or fellow will be 60% of the level requested, up to $21,000 per year.

B. Training Related Expenses on Institutional Training Grants
For institutional training grants (T32, T35, T90, TL1), these expenses (including health insurance costs) for predoctoral trainees will be paid at the amounts shown below for all competing and non-competing awards made with FY 2017 funds.  

  • Predoctoral Trainees: $4,200

C. Institutional Allowance for Individual Fellows
This allowance for predoctoral fellows will be paid at the amounts shown below for all competing and non-competing awards made with FY 2017 funds.

Institutional Allowance for individual fellows (F30, F31, F99) sponsored by non-Federal Public, Private, and Non-Profit Institutions (Domestic & Foreign, including health insurance):

  • Predoctoral Fellows: $4,200

Institutional Allowance for individual fellows (F30, F31, F99) sponsored by Federal and For-Profit Institutions (including health insurance):  

  • Predoctoral Fellows: $3,100

Relevant Policies
Current stipend levels are to be used in the preparation of future competing and non-competing NRSA institutional training grant and individual fellowship applications.  They will be administratively applied to all applications currently in the review process.

NRSA support is limited to 5 years for predoctoral trainees (6 years for dual-degree training, e.g., MD/PhD, DO/PhD, DDS/PhD, AuD/PhD, DVM/PhD).

It should be noted that the maximum amount that NIH will award to support the compensation package for a graduate student research assistant remains at the zero level postdoctoral stipend, as described in NOT-OD-02-017.

Frequently Asked Questions Related to NRSA Tuition, Fees, and Health Insurance Policies: http://grants.nih.gov/training/nrsa_tuition_q&a.htm.


Important REMINDER: NIH, AHRQ & NIOSH Policy on Appendix Materials

This message serves as a reminder for everyone at MUSC to adhere to the policy on Appendix Materials in funding applications submitted to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), or the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). 

These federal agencies will administratively withdraw applications that include any disallowed materials in the Appendices.  Such an oversight will prohibit the application from getting peer reviewed and scored.

This information has been added to the ORSP web page for quick reference (http://academicdepartments.musc.edu/research/orsp/policies_procedures/appendix_materials_NIH_AHRQ_NIOSH). 

NOTE: the NIH FAQ link (https://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/appendix_policy.htm) has been included to help clarify what is or is not allowed to be included in the Appendix Materials.

Background

Notice NOT-OD-16-129 alerted the scientific research community of the elimination of most appendix materials for applications submitted to NIH, AHRQ or NIOSH for due dates on or after January 25, 2017. 

The NIH, AHRQ, and NIOSH strive to ensure fairness in peer review for all grant applicants by specifying the types and amount of application material that are accepted for peer review.  At the same time, these agencies appreciate both the need for applications to provide sufficient information to allow for an informed, expert review process and the importance of limiting the burden on peer reviewers.

Elimination of most appendix materials is intended to rectify inequities in the peer review process that can arise from submission of inappropriate or excessive appendix materials by some applicants and consideration of appendix materials in peer review by some, but not all reviewers. 

Policy

Appendix materials in peer review

All information submitted with an application except the cover letter, assignment request form and appendix information are assembled into a single application image for funding consideration. The different sections within the application image are specified in the application instructions and correspond to the standard review criteria.

Therefore:

  • All information required for the peer review process must be contained within those designated sections of the application image, unless the Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) specifies otherwise. 
  • Information that expands upon or complements information provided in any section of the application -- even if it is not required for the review -- is not allowed in the appendix unless it is listed in the allowed appendix materials (below).  (NOT-OD-11-080)
  • Unless the FOA requires that certain information be included in the appendix, failure of reviewers to address appendix materials in their reviews is not an acceptable basis for an appeal of initial peer review (NOT-OD-11-064).

Allowable appendix materials

Beginning with applications submitted to the NIH, AHRQ, or NIOSH for due dates on or after January 25, 2017, the only allowable appendix materials are:

For applications proposing clinical trials (unless the FOA provides other instructions for these materials):

  • Clinical trial protocols
  • Investigator's brochure from Investigational New Drug (IND), as appropriate

For all applications:

  • Blank informed consent/assent forms
  • Blank surveys, questionnaires, data collection instruments
  • FOA-specified items. 
    • If appendix materials are required in the FOA, review criteria for that FOA will address those materials, and applications submitted without those appendix materials will be considered incomplete and will not be reviewed.

Consequences for submitting disallowed appendix materials

Applications submitted for due dates on or after January 25, 2017 will be withdrawn and not reviewed if they are submitted with appendix materials that are not specifically listed in this Notice or the FOA as allowed or required.

FAQs on the NIH/AHRQ/NIOSH Appendix Policy

Related Announcements

NOT-OD-17-035
NOT-OD-17-023
NOT-OD-16-130
NOT-OD-11-064
NOT-OD-11-080


Save the Date - PCORI Workshop
Save the Date - PCORI Workshop

The Office of Research Development is hosting a PCORI Workshop on July 18, 2018. The details are underdevelopment but I wanted to have faculty Save-the-Date.  The workshop will be 3-hours and two program officers from PCORI will be on campus to provide details regarding the organization, funding opportunities available, and an overview of the engagement requirements.  Dr. Kathleen Brady asked that PCORI also discuss plans for their sustainability. 
 


Introducing ... the Office of Clinical Research!

Since the memo of understanding was signed in October 2016 to establish a new Office of Clinical Research, much of the activity has involved setting up MUSC’s newest Research Administration Office.  Most of the staff have been hired and space secured in Suite 170 in the Roper Medical Office Building, just down the hall from the SCTR offices.  New workflow processes and training are being developed, as well as tools and metrics, to guide study teams in understanding what research billing compliance entails. Clinical research billing compliance in this context is often referred to as prospective reimbursement analysis.

The purpose of the Office of Clinical Research is outlined below, but to better understand how the OCR fits into the MUSC Research community, this organization chart illustrates how we are positioned.

 

Important to note, is that the OCR is a collaboration between MUSC Administration, College of Medicine, and MUSC Health.

Effective May 1, all new clinical research studies must have a clinical billing compliance review called a Prospective Reimbursement Analysis (PRA).  The OCR has been busy providing information for faculty members, and meeting and providing more detailed training to study team about the new PRA workflow process.  The OCR PRA Team is seeking information from departments and the research community to improve the OCR and research processes.

The goal of the billing compliance review process is to facilitate the research study activation process as well as to ensure compliance, so please submit studies early in the study activation process.  The OCR PRA Team will work alongside the study team to complete the PRA in parallel with the study team completing the budget.  The PRA will provide valuable information to support budget development and contract negotiation.  Eventually, the prospective reimbursement process (PRA) should improve the process and reduce the time of setting up a clinical research study.

We encourage the MUSC Research Community to visit the OCR internal website at: http://horseshoe.musc.edu/research/ocr.  Browse the pages for Training and Resources, Announcements and updates both from the OCR and the Epic Research Team.  Our external-facing website is primarily for industry sponsors.

The horseshoe sites are most easily accessed if you are on campus. If off campus, you may have use a VPN to log in.  In addition, you can contact the OCR office at 843-792-7900 or at musc-ocr@musc.edu.