STD AAPPS FOA Frequently Asked Questions
1. How was the funding formula applied to states with independently funded cities?
The independently funded city counts were EXCLUDED from the state calculation.
For example, California's funding calculation:
- did NOT include the population for Los Angeles or San Francisco; and
- did NOT include the burden for Los Angeles or San Francisco.
- San Francisco and Los Angeles were calculated separately.
(July 9, 2013)
2. Should jurisdictions applying for SSuN, or waiting for decisions regarding the use of carry forward funds include those activities as part of the STD AAPPS application?
SSuN is a fully competitive cooperative agreement with a completely separate scope of work and should be considered distinct and separate from STD AAPPS.
Applicants for STD AAPPS should make no assumptions about additional funding, including SSuN.
STD AAPPS supports the state core infrastructure for STD prevention, therefore the application should include all staff needed to support the core infrastructure. (July 9, 2013)
3. Do state applicants need to fund all counties in the state, or can they fund certain counties to carry out STD-AAPPS grant activities?
Applicants must consider state and local needs when proposing counties that will be supported by this grant.
Applicants should use data to identify communities that are disproportionately affected by burden of disease and focus resources accordingly.
Applicants should consider supporting counties providing safety net STD clinical preventive services in high need areas. (July 9, 2013)
4. Once we've accounted for the minimum required activities, can applicants fund activities not included in the suggested list?
Yes, however, the applicant must address how the required activities will be handled.
The applicant should also include any suggested activities they plan to undertake with an explanation of why those activities have been selected.
The applicant may propose activities not included in the FOA, in order to address state/local needs; however, justification for these activities should be included. (July 9, 2013)
5. If an awardee has, for example, a 5% increase in the first year of funding (2014), according to “average award” listed in the funding table, should that awardee expect a 5% increase each year after 2014?
Funding is dependent upon the Division of STD Prevention’s budget in future years.
The funding formula phases in changes in funding evenly over the five year project period.
For example, if your program has a listed increase of 5% in 2014 (not including the sequestration reduction), you should plan for similar increases each of the following years.
Here is an example:
Grantee A was funded $100,000 in 2012.
Grantee A anticipates that after applying the sequestration (5%) in 2013, their 2013 funding amount will be $95,000 [$100,000-($100,000x.05)=$95,000]
Note: Grantee A will also have a 0.398% rescission in 2013, but this occurred after release of the FOA, and so was not included in the formula calculations.
The AAPPS FOA table lists $99,750 for “average award” and $106,733 for “ceiling” for Grantee A.
$99,750 is a 5% increase over $95,000 [$95,000+($95,000x.05)=$99,750], so Grantee A plans for a similar increase each year (dependent upon available funding).
However, Grantee A should apply for the $106,733 listed for Grantee A under “ceiling” in the FOA funding table.
The same logic can be applied to programs with decreases listed for year one.
These anticipated amounts do not include any additional sequestration or other budget reductions that may occur. (July 9, 2013; Updated July 24, 2013)
6. The FOA contains very little language regarding the support of Hepatitis B and C services. Can applicants use these funds to support Hepatitis B and C services in our jurisdiction?
This grant is primarily to support STD core infrastructure and to address limited clinical services for uninsured and underinsured populations.
In areas with documented syndemics (syphilis and GC with hepatitis C) where STD infrastructure needs have been met, applicants may consider supporting hepatitis B and C services.
- Applicants are expected to articulate their needs and leverage resources by working with the state immunization program.
(July 9, 2013)
7. Why did CDC update the funding allocation assessment?
Current funding does not appropriately align funding with burden and need. In November 2011, CDC began active solicitation and collection of formal comments as part of DSTDP’s consultative process. Grantees requested moving funding to be more in alignment with disease burden, while mitigating harm to programs. In order to give full consideration of all stakeholder input, DSTDP’s modelers developed a robust system to compare various formulas and considered more than 100 different formulas before applying the one outlined in STD AAPPS FOA.
The proposed formula is a conservative approach that begins to balance need while minimizing harm to established efficient and effective programs. This change is also essential to support program adaptation and integration with the changing public health and health care environment. In addition, CDC is committed to defining the parameters and resources needed to support efficient and cost-effective STD prevention programs at the state and local level during the next five years of this FOA. (June 14, 2013)
8. Why wasn’t funding based solely on burden?
DSTDP noted several problems with basing a funding formula solely on burden:
- A funding formula based solely on burden would create a radical change in funding (more so than the proposed formula). In some cases it could cause large decreases in funding for some programs over the course of the project period. In other cases, the implementation of a burden-only formula does not allow much time for programs that would be getting large increases to prepare ;
- A burden-only formula did not take into account resources that would be required to maintain minimum core public health functions for STD prevention in a jurisdiction;
- A funding formula based solely on burden did not take into account anticipated cases based upon population changes; and
- A burden-only formula could potentially penalize programs that are doing a good job preventing STD among at-risk populations in their jurisdictions.
After assessing multiple approaches and combinations of the formula using size of population, disease burden, and rates of disease, a formula that took into account both burden/rates and population, rose to the top as being the most balanced approach. (June 14, 2013)
9. Why did CDC eliminate funding for the Infertility Prevention Project (IPP)?
As with STD AAPPS overall, removing separate program components for IPP reflects the increasing proportion of STD prevention activities occurring in private clinical venues. Infertility prevention remains a core priority of CDC's STD prevention funding. STD AAPPS simply allows that funding to expand infertility prevention services wherever they are needed, including private venues. (June 14, 2013)
10. Do the amounts noted in the FOA for floor, average, and ceiling include the sequestration reductions? Or will applicants be required to reduce these by the sequester amount?
Yes, the amounts noted in the FOA for floor, average, and ceiling include the sequestration reductions but not the 2013 rescission amount of 0.398.
This rescission amount will need to be applied to the floor, average, and ceiling amounts in the FOA. (July 9, 2013)
11. What do the funding ranges mean?
CDC does not yet know funding levels for 2014.
We anticipate that awardees will apply for the ceiling award listed in the table for STD AAPPS but should plan for the average minus the rescission amount of .398, which may be more likely if funding remains constant.
Applicants should not apply for an amount above the ceiling listed for their jurisdiction in the funding table in the FOA because if they do their application will be considered non-responsive.
Applications that are non-responsive will not advance to the Phase II review for further consideration. These applicants will be notified that the application did not meet published submission requirements. (July 9, 2013)
12. To which entities does the 25% cap apply, meaning which jurisdictions should plan for their award amounts being decreased at the maximum of 5% annually? In the first webinar, Dr. Bolan mentioned this cap was applied to 11 entities.
The Health Commissioners for the capped entities were notified by CDC. If your area did not receive notification, then the 25% cap does not apply.
If you compare your final 2013 award to the average 2014 award for your jurisdiction in the FOA, we anticipate that the difference is the amount by which your award will increase or decrease each year if STD prevention funding does not change. This is assuming 2014 funding with be comparable to 2013 funding. CDC does not yet know funding levels for 2014. (July 9, 2013)
13. Can applicants get more details on the funding formula so that we can apply it to funding our local health departments using the same formula? Assuming DSTDP created a spreadsheet with formulas, can we receive a copy of the spreadsheet with the project area data removed?
The tool CDC developed is for a national program, uses national inputs and complex algorithms to handle limits to funding increases and decreases by jurisdiction, and accommodates only exactly the number of jurisdictions CDC funds. Therefore, it is not applicable for use by state or local jurisdictions. It is up to the applicant to determine how best to distribute funds according to need, and applicants may develop tools to assist them. (July 9, 2013)
14. Will there be additional opportunities to apply for funds to support innovative programs, program evaluation, or other special projects? In particular, will additional funds be available to prepare for and respond to emerging drug resistant gonorrhea?
At this time there are no additional funds to support innovation, program evaluation or special projects, or to step up preparations for and response to the threat of emerging drug resistant gonorrhea. Existing STD AAPPS resources are to be used to support these important areas. (July 9, 2013)
15. The STD AAPPS FOA funding formula indicates that a jurisdiction’s morbidity for primary and secondary syphilis, gonorrhea, and chlamydia is taken into account when calculating the award amount. The FOA states that data from 2007-2011 was used. Will the calculations be fixed for the entire project period based upon the 2007-2011 data?
Yes, the calculations will be fixed for the entire project period, but award amounts will be dependent upon CDC funding. (July 9, 2013)
16. PGO stated that project areas should use the same indirect cost rate for all grants. That is not what occurs in our jurisdiction. If a program has a large budget, they may chooses to pay the entire city indirect cost rate. Programs with a limited budget ask to have their rate reduced so that they can provide more direct services. Is this going to be a mandated requirement?
Include the indirect cost rate regardless of the similarity between other grants. (July 11, 2013)
17. Should applicants provide a written policy outlining their fringe benefit rate?
Yes, CDC requires applicants to provide information on the fringe benefit rate used and the basis for their calculation.
If a fringe benefit rate is used, applicants should itemize how the fringe benefit rate is computed.
Instructions for computing budgets can be found at: www.cdc.gov/od/pgo/funding/budgetguide.htm (July 11, 2013)
18. Regarding the Administrative Requirements list, AR-5 (HIV Program Panel Review) is mentioned. To what extent does this AR impact project/product development that would be developed under the STD AAPPS cooperative agreement? The specific funding source(s) of this FOA is unclear.
Ten percent of each award is supported by CDC’s HIV funding. Untreated STDs facilitate HIV transmission. Also, STD programs identify new HIV infections, and can help provide linkage to care for HIV-positive individuals.
All written materials, audiovisual materials, pictorials, questionnaires, survey instruments, websites, educational curricula and other relevant program materials must be reviewed and approved by an established program review panel. A list of reviewed materials and approval dates must be submitted to the CDC Grants Management Specialist. This is an HIV Program Review Panel requirement. (July 11, 2013)
19. In the Direct Assistance section, it states that an applicant may request that the CDC or ATSDR provide direct assistance in the form of Federal personnel as part of the grant awarded through this FOA. Can applicants reduce the number of Federal personnel in order to gain more funds?
No. Applicants cannot request a direct assistance (DA) to financial assistance (FA) conversion. The funding formula has been applied in order to ensure an equitable distribution of funding. A similar approach is in the planning stage for direct assistance to ensure a similar distribution of DA resources.