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Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) Program Phase I

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Request for Proposals

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality is accepting proposals for Small Business Innovative Research Program, Phase I.

Solicitation Number AHRQ-01-0014; 100-percent Small Business Set Aside under SIC Code 7379-Offers are solicited from small business concerns only.

Proposal Due: March 19, 2001, 3:00 P.M., local prevailing time

Contracting Office: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality: Division of Contracts Management, 2101 East Jefferson Street, Suite 601, Rockville, MD 20852; fax (301) 443-7523.

The mission of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) is to enhance the quality, appropriateness, and effectiveness of health services and to provide access to such services. AHRQ applies broad-based scientific research designed to (1) improve clinical practice; (2) improve the health care system's ability to provide access to and deliver high-quality, high-value health care; and (3) provide policymakers with the ability to assess the impact of system changes on outcomes, quality, access, cost, and use of health services.

The synopsis for this requirement was published in the Commerce Business Daily on January 12, 2001. The solicitation was issued on January 31, 2001. Full text can be downloaded from the AHRQ Web site. Select to access Downloading Information. Printed copies are also available by writing to the above address. No telephone requests for the RFP will be accepted.

It is anticipated that multiple contracts will be awarded for the Phase I period. It is anticipated that this contract will be awarded in April 2001.

This solicitation invites proposals in the following area:

Topic: Developing Tools to Enhance Quality and Patient Safety Through Medical Informatics

The Institute of Medicine recently estimated that 44,000-98,000 people die in American hospitals each year because of medical errors. Many of these errors could be prevented through use of modern information technology. Technology applications can also be used to:

  • Provide evidence-based decision support to providers at the time and point-of-service.
  • Provide evidence-based information to patients.
  • Enhance shared decisionmaking and self-care.
  • Increase access to care for patients living in remote or underserved areas.
  • Facilitate sharing of important clinical data among providers in disparate locations.
  • Improve the overall quality of care.

Examples of such technology include biomedical databases, electronic medical records, computerized order entry, handheld wireless computers, Internet applications, and computerized decision-support systems.

The Agency seeks Phase I SBIR proposals to:

  • Develop informatics tools that enhance patient safety by reducing medical errors and injuries.
  • Develop Internet or other computer applications that enhance patient-provider communication and shared decision-making.
  • Develop applications that allow providers to share medical records and other medical information with their patients.
  • Develop handheld or other portable device applications for patients and providers.

Proposals must address how the use of these technologies can improve quality of care and patient safety.

In Phase I, investigators should propose an approach or combination of approaches for identifying factors important in the development of these tools and devices. Potential approaches may include:

  • Patient and provider focus groups.
  • Comprehensive literature reviews.
  • Secondary data analysis.
  • Other techniques appropriate for Phase I contracts.

The contractor will be expected to develop prototype devices and interventions, such as Web-based technologies that interactively link patients with their health care providers and health care systems.

In Phase II, the investigators will be expected to expand on the prototype developed during Phase I and begin implementation and testing of the prototype devices and interventions. Phase II must include an assessment of the intervention's impact on important measurable outcomes such as a reduction in medication errors, increase in compliance with recommended treatment guidelines, etc. Beta testing is to be completed at the end of the Phase II period. The final product should be applicable and adaptable to a variety of health care populations, conditions, and settings.

Downloading Information

Shift-click from this Web page: Your browser may support downloading the RFP and Appendixes from this Web page. To download the RFP from this Web page, click on the following links with the right mouse button and select "Save Link As" (Netscape) or "Save Target As" (Internet Explorer). The RFP is available as WordPerfect® and PDF Files:

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Current as of January 2001

The information on this page is archived and provided for reference purposes only.


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