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Rural Health Research Center Program

About the program

Funding Opportunity Number: HRSA-24-004
Dates to Apply: 03/22/2024 to 05/23/2024
Bureau/Office: Federal Office of Rural Health Policy
Status: Closed
Estimated Award Date: 09/01/2024
This notice announces the opportunity to apply for funding under the Rural Health Research Center (RHRC) Program. The purpose of this cooperative agreement is to support recipients as they develop high-quality, impartial, policy relevant rural health services research to inform the improvement of health care in rural areas. Health services research is a “multidisciplinary field of scientific investigation that studies how social factors, financing systems, organizational structures and processes, health technologies, and personal behaviors affect access to health care, the quality and cost of health care, and ultimately, our health and well-being.” The objectives of the health services research funded through this program are to inform health care providers, administrators, policymakers, and other interested parties at the federal, state, and local levels of the challenges facing rural communities relating to health care and to inform policies designed to improve access to rural health care. Rural health services research addresses critical concerns facing rural communities in their efforts to secure adequate, affordable, and high-quality health services. The four-year RHRC Program awards will support research centers with specific rural health research areas of concentration. The topic(s) of concentration must relate to policy issues intended to inform the improvement of health care in rural areas. The topic(s) of concentration must also be of enduring interest and importance to rural providers, rural stakeholders, policymakers, and/or rural communities. RHRC recipients will conduct policy-oriented health services research. In addition to primary and secondary research, the applicant may conduct literature syntheses and update existing research to produce timely and relevant information. The ratio of original research to other projects will be negotiated between the recipients and the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy (FORHP). The recipients will synthesize findings into publicly available policy briefs accessible to a non-technical audience. Research findings will inform a wide audience of national, state, and local decisionmakers about health issues in rural communities. For example, research findings may illustrate opportunities for policy or programs to address barriers or challenges to providing or accessing health care in rural areas. Research funded under this cooperative agreement will be publicly available on the Rural Health Research Gateway at This program will support health services research projects and will not support clinical and biomedical research or the delivery of health care services. You may apply for either the: (1) RHRC Program (base award of up to $700,000 per year for 4 years) alone; or (2) RHRC Program (base award of up to $700,000 per year for 4 years) and Optional RHRC Supplement (of up to $250,000) awarded no more than once per year for each year of the 4-year period of performance. See Attachment 4 for guidance in applying for the “Optional RHRC Supplement.” Such supplemental funds will be: • Awarded at HRSA’s discretion, based on the Optional RHRC Supplement review criteria in Section V.2 Review and Selection Process; • Subject to the appropriation of funds for each year; and • Subject to successful performance of the recipient on the base award.

Who can apply

You can apply if your organization is in the United States, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Northern Mariana Islands, American Samoa, Guam, the U.S. Virgin Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, or the Republic of Palau, and is a public or private, nonprofit, or for-profit organization. Native American tribal governments and tribal organizations are eligible to apply.

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