Extramural Workforce Development: Grants Process

Introduction

NIOSH utilizes the NIH model for the administration of its extramural program. This allows NIOSH to partner with other components of the U.S. Public Health Service to support occupational safety and health research. This system also ensures that high quality research is funded through the two-step peer review process. For certain types of awards, such as small grants and career development grants, there may be differences among sponsoring Institutes, so please refer to specific announcements for the requirements of each grant mechanism. Questions about NIOSH funding should be directed to the Office of Extramural Programs (OEP), or contact the program administrator whose name appears in the funding opportunity announcement. An overview of the grants process that NIOSH follows may be found at NIH.

Grants Policy and Guidance

There are several sequential steps involved in preparing and submitting a grant application, as well as receiving and completing a grant. The following NIH website contains information on policies and procedures that applicants must follow.

Forms and Applications

The required grant application forms for all NIOSH programs are the Public Health Service (PHS) Forms 424 and 398, depending on the requested form in the Funding Announcement. The following website provides access to downloadable forms and instructions for completing the forms.

Receipt Dates

There are different receipt dates for grant applications submitted under Program Announcements (PA) and under Requests for Applications (RFA). An RFA has one receipt date which is specified in the announcement. PAs typically have three standard receipt dates each year, which correspond to three review and award cycles. Information on these cycles is found here.

Occasionally, a PA will have only one specified receipt date per year. It is important for applicants to refer to the funding opportunity announcement for receipt dates.

Peer Review

Applications for support from NIOSH are initially evaluated by peer review groups composed of scientists primarily from the extramural research community. The objective of the initial peer review is to evaluate and rate the scientific and technical merit of the proposed research or research training. It takes place in Scientific Review Groups (SRGs) that are managed by Scientific Review Officers (SROs) who are located in NIOSH and in the Center for Scientific Review (CSR) of NIH, depending on where the application is assigned for review. NIOSH has a chartered SRG called the Safety and Occupational Health (SOH) Study Section that reviews applications submitted under NIOSH’s general Program Announcements. Members of the SOH Study Section are normally appointed to four-year terms. NIOSH also convenes Special Emphasis Panels (SEPs) to review applications that are submitted in response to special focused Program Announcements and Requests for Applications (RFA’s). Members of SEPs are temporary and are appointed only for the duration of a specific review activity.

The SOH Study Section meets three times annually in February, June and October. Our standing SOH Study Section is composed of 20 members who serve four-year terms. The current SOH Study Section roster is available. Additionally, there are 8-10 SEPs conducted by OEP per year. You can access information on these upcoming review meetings via the NIOSH Federal Register Notices webpage.

Following initial peer review for scientific merit, the NIOSH Secondary Review Committee (SRC) reviews all applications for programmatic relevance and considers issues such as balance of the extramural grant portfolio and potential to contribute to NIOSH goals. The SRC advises the NIOSH and OEP Directors on the conduct and support of research, training, health information dissemination, and other programs related to worker safety and health.

Additional information on the NIH peer review process that NIOSH follows.

Just-In-Time Information Submission

After the secondary or programmatic review, any applicants whose score is within the range for funding consideration will be asked to submit additional information that must be received by NIOSH prior to an award. This information is called “Just-in-Time” information. The Just-in-Time information will be solicited by the Scientific Program Official assigned to the application.

Grant Closeout:

When the competitive segment of a grant or cooperative agreement is completed, the Principal Investigator and Authorized Organizational Representative are responsible for meeting specific requirements to officially close out the award. Guidance on meeting these requirements and preparing the necessary documents are provided below.

 Final Research Performance Progress Report

 The Final RPPR is completed and submitted to CDC through the NIH eRA Commons system. Refer to the “NIH and Other PHS Agency RPPR Instruction Guide” for detailed instructions on completing the report. There are no forms to download, this is an online report.

If your grant has been successfully renewed, a Final RPPR will not be available in eRA Commons. In these circumstances, please work with your Program Official and Grants Management Specialist named in the Notice of Award to submit a Final RPPR via email.  Unlike NIH, CDC requires a Final RPPR – your renewal application does not supersede this requirement.

Final Federal Financial Report

The final Federal Financial Report (FFR) should only include those funds authorized and expended during the performance period of this award. The final FFR is required and must be submitted no later than 90 days after the period of performance end date.

Recipients are required to submit their Final FFR through their online accounts in the Payment Management System (PMS) 90 days after the end of the period of performance. The final FFR will consolidate data reporting responsibilities to one entry point within PMS which will assist with the reconciliation of expenditures and disbursements to support a timely close-out.

The final FFR must indicate the exact balance of unobligated funds and may not reflect any unliquidated obligations.

Every recipient should already have a PMS.  Additional guidance on submission of Federal Financial Reports can be found at https://www.cdc.gov/grants/documents/change-in-federal-reporting-fy-2021-recipients.pdf.

Equipment and Supplies – Tangible Personal Property Report (SF-428):

A completed Tangible Personal Property Final Report SF-428-B addendum must be submitted, along with any Supplemental Sheet SF-428S detailing all major equipment acquired or furnished under this project with a unit acquisition cost of $5,000 or more.

Electronic versions of the forms can be downloaded by visiting: https://www.grants.gov/web/grants/forms/post-award-reporting-forms.html#sortby=1 .

If no equipment was acquired under an award, a negative or null report is still required.

The recipient must identify each item of equipment that it wishes to retain for continued use in accordance with 45 CFR Part 75.

Equipment with a unit acquisition cost of less than $5,000 that is no longer to be used in projects or programs currently or previously sponsored by the federal government may be retained, sold, or otherwise disposed of, with no further obligation to the federal government.

Final Invention Statement (Not Applicable to NIOSH Training Grants T03/T42):

A Final Invention Statement must be submitted. Electronic versions of the form can be downloaded by visiting https://grants.nih.gov/grants/hhs568.pdf.  If no inventions were conceived under an assistance award, a negative report is still required. This statement may be included in a cover letter.

SBIR Life Cycle Certification (Only Applicable to NIOSH SBIR R43/R44 Grants)

All SBIR Phase I and Phase II grantees must complete this certification at all times set forth in the funding agreement. This includes checking all the boxes and having an authorized officer of the awardee sign and date the certification each time it is required.

A certification is required at the following times:

  • For SBIR Phase I Awardees: At the time of receiving final payment or disbursement from the Payment Management System or via contract.
  • For SBIR Phase II Awardees: prior to receiving more than 50% of the total award amount and prior to final payment or disbursement from the Payment Management System or via contract.

Electronic version of this form can be downloaded by visiting: https://grants.nih.gov/sites/default/files/SBIR-Life-Cycle-Certification.pdf

Page last reviewed: January 3, 2018