NIH issued more than $137 MILLION in RFAs just last week. NIH has cracked $2.5 billion for this fiscal year.
Interestingly, seven RFAs totaling $63 million form a funding package for the Human, Heredity, and Health in Africa (H3Africa). This program supports African researchers studying the genetic and environmental contributors to health and disease in Africa. This package illustrates how multiple RFAs can be combined to fund different projects around a central goal, including training, data centers, and research projects. Can you think of any other scientific areas that could benefit from a multi-prong approach to jump start research?
With the end of FY 2016 just seven weeks away, I think it likely that we will see a flurry of RFA activity as Institutes race to obligate money before the coffers close. It remains an open question whether NIH will be in a hurry to issue the promised ME/CFS RFA.
Edited to add: Many commenters here and elsewhere have criticized the large sum allocated to the H3Africa project. I do not. African researchers need financial support, and many governments have few resources to give them. Furthermore, African public health is under tremendous strain. NIH is well placed to support this research to some extent. What I do object to is the fact that NIH has yet to make good on Dr. Collins’s promise to ramp up ME/CFS research.
- Total RFAs Issued by NIH: 289 (October 2015 to date)
- Total Dollars Committed to RFAs: $2,520,000,617 (October 2015 to date)
- Total RFAs for ME/CFS: ZERO (October 2015 to date)
|Week Beginning||RFAs Issued||Total Commitment||RFAs for ME/CFS|
If you want more background on the RFA Ticker, read the inaugural post.