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New grants process at AHRQ

As part of the President's Management Agenda, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality will join the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the transition to electronic submission of grant applications and use of a new research grant application form. The SF 424 Research and Related (R&R) form will replace the PHS 398 form. ( has been designated as the main Web portal by the Office of Management and Budget and will serve as the single access point for all grant programs offered by 26 Federal grant-making agencies. provides the interface for agencies to announce their grant opportunities and for all grant applicants to find and apply for those funding opportunities.

AHRQ will transition to in phases by type of grant mechanism as follows:

  • December 20, 2005—Small Conference Grant Program (R13).
  • February 17, 2006—Research Dissertation Grant Program (R36).
  • July 24, 2006—Small Research Grant Programs (R03).
  • October 1, 2006—Research Project Grant Program (R01).

The transition for health services research training and career development grant mechanisms (K02, K08, F31, and F32) will occur after the R01 transition. Both announcements of the transition for specific funding mechanisms and Funding Opportunity Announcements (Requests for Applications and Program Announcements) will be issued in the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts and will be posted in

As the funding mechanisms are transitioned to electronic submissions, all active Funding Opportunity Announcements for that mechanism will be transitioned at the same time. Applications in response to these announcements will require electronic submission through Electronic submission of grant applications via for all funding mechanisms will take place by the end of 2007.

Applicant organizations must register with both and the NIH Electronic Research Administration System (also known as the eRA Commons). Registration requires a one-time registration on their Web site. Registration takes only about 30 minutes; however, it may take about 2 weeks for the process to be completed. Data entered in will enable applicant organizations to submit their applications electronically.

NIH eRA Commons Registraton

NIH eRA Commons registration allows AHRQ to receive applications submitted through the portal. It also provides a way for AHRQ and registered users to communicate electronically after submission.

Applicant organizations that plan to submit applications to AHRQ must complete a one-time, two-step eRA Commons registration.

  1. eRA Commons Registration for the Organization: Organizations may verify their current registration status by running the "List of Commons Registered Organizations" query found at Organizations not yet registered can register through the eRA Commons homepage at This registration is independent of, may be done at any time, and generally takes several days to complete.
  2. eRA Commons Registration for the Principal Investigator (PI): The individual designated as the PI on the application must also be registered in the Commons. The PI must hold a PI account and be affiliated with the applicant organization. This registration must be done by an organizational official or their delegate who is already registered in the Commons and should be completed at least 2 weeks prior to the date of any submission. To register PIs in the Commons, refer to the eRA Commons User Guide found at

Additional information on the preparation of electronic submission, receipt processes, and eRA Commons registration can be found at: In addition, AHRQ welcomes the opportunity to answer questions about the transition process. Questions regarding the process should be directed as follows:

General E-Grants Transition:
George 'Skip' Moyer
(301) 427-1452

Application Receipt and Referral:
Gerald Calderone, Ph.D.
(301) 427-1548

Peer Review:
Francis Chesley, M.D.
(301) 427-1524

Grants Management:
Michelle Burr
(301) 427-1451

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