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To stimulate grant-supported research in high-priority and high-opportunity areas of science.
A program announcement (PA) is one of three types of initiatives—together with requests for applications (RFA) and solicitations—NIAID develops with its Advisory Council.
PAs may be sponsored by one or more NIH institutes and centers (ICs). They usually use standard NIH submission dates—see the NIH Standard Due Dates for Competing Applications—but may use a single annual due date if warranted. PAs remain active for three years (up to nine receipt dates), unless NIAID inactivates them sooner; see the Program Announcement Inactivation SOP for more on that topic.
PAs differ from RFAs as follows:
- PAs may or may not have set-aside funds. If they do not, NIAID may fund some of the applications beyond the payline. RFAs always have set-aside funds.
- PAs are usually broader; for example, a PA may focus on biodefense research opportunities, where an RFA will focus on developing therapies for a particular disease. Also, a PA may only focus on a certain mechanism (R01, R21, R34, etc.).
- Applications in response to a PA are reviewed by the applicable Center for Scientific Review study section unless otherwise stated in the FOA. Applications responding to an RFA are reviewed by an IC-specific review panel in a special emphasis panel.
There are two special types of PAs:
- PAR—applications are reviewed by an Institute or a special Center for Scientific Review committee and have due dates that are specified in the NIH Guide announcement.
- PAS—PA with set-aside funds.
- For NIAID active PAs, go to NIAID’s Funding Opportunity Announcements list.
- You can also find PAs in the NIH Guide by selecting PA, PAR, and PAS under the Type of Funding Opportunity Announcement filter on the left rail, which retrieves active program announcements.
- You can find PAs in Grants.gov by selecting Search Grants and entering and selecting your search criteria.
- Determine whether applying for a PA is right for you. For our advice, read Types of Funding Opportunities.
- After developing a concept for a PA, enter it into the Research Initiative Management System (RIMS).
- Once your division, the NIAID director, and Council recommend a concept for approval, work with Division of Extramural Activities (DEA) staff to create a project plan that schedules all steps needed to proceed from concept to award. See the Phasing of Initiatives SOP.
- Work with the Office of Initiative Development (OID) to prepare drafts of the PA and forward to your program division coordinator for internal division review.
- After division approval, your program division coordinator submits the drafts to OID for review and approval.
- OID will submit to DEA for final approval and submission and publication to the Funding Opportunity Announcement Module (FOAM).
- After electronic applications arrive, you can view them in IMPAC.
- If an application is not responsive to NIAID's research mandate, see if another IC will accept assignment of the application.
- Work with NIAID Receipt and Referral
- If no other IC will accept the application, inform the PI that the application is nonresponsive and withdraw the application. See Withdrawal of a Nonresponsive Application SOP.
Office of Extramural Research Policy and Operations
- Create a project phasing plan and receive internal DEA approval of the plan before sending to program divisions for approval.
- Provide guidance to program staff during all stages of PA development.
- Review drafts and send comments to the program officer through either the program division coordinator or OID according to the project plan.
- Enter PAs into FOAM to allow other ICs the opportunity to comment or sign on before the PA is published (at least two weeks).
- Ensure PAs are formatted according to the most recent PA guidelines and templates.
- Send the final PA to NIH Guide staff for review, approval, and publication.
- Monitor phasing milestones and revise as necessary.
- About four to eight weeks before the first version of a PA is due, coordinate and lead planning meeting to discuss scope, requirements, and other issues.
- The meeting includes the program officer, branch chief, program division coordinator, DEA staff, and possibly a representative from the NIAID Office of Technology Development.
- Advise program staff during all stages of PA development.
Applicants with questions should read Contacting Program Officers and Grants Management Specialists.
Phasing—Contact for NIAID Staff
Contact for NIAID Staff—DAIDS
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