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NIMH Outreach Partnership Program 2013 Solicitation: Inquiries and Responses

Questions and Responses
July 23, 2013

2013 Solicitation

For the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the following 22 States:
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Washington, West Virginia, and Wyoming

The following questions were submitted by organizations in response to a recently released solicitation for the NIMH Outreach Partnership Program. The deadline to submit questions was June 21, 2013. Responses to these questions were prepared by the NIMH Outreach Partnership Program staff, and are organized below to correspond with the sections of the solicitation, including:

Organizational Eligibility

  1. Question: Do current NIMH Outreach Partners need to reapply to be considered for an NIMH Outreach Partner position?
    Answer: Yes, the current NIMH Outreach Partners are required to reapply if they wish to be considered for the NIMH Outreach Partner position in their state.
  2. Question: Is the competition open only to the current NIMH Outreach Partners?
    Answer: No. Any non-profit organization that meets the Program Requirements, Organizational Eligibility, and Organizational Capabilities as described in the Outreach Partnership Program 2013 Solicitation is eligible to apply. Detailed information about the Program Requirements, Organizational Eligibility, and Organizational Capabilities can be found at: http://www.nimh.nih.gov/outreach/partnership-program/solicitation-process/2013-nimh-outreach-partnership-program-solicitation.shtml#requirements.
  3. Question: Is the Program looking to award additional Outreach Partners through this solicitation?
    Answer: No. The Program funds one Outreach Partner in each state, with the exception of California, New York, and Texas where there are two Outreach Partners. No additional positions are being established.
  4. Question: Can an organization apply to be an Outreach Partner for a state that it is not located in?
    Answer: No, an organization must be located and have a mailing address in the state for which it is applying.
  5. Question: Why are all states not listed in the 2013 Solicitation?
    Answer: NIMH does not compete all Outreach Partner positions at the same time. A schedule for future NIMH Outreach Partnership Program solicitations is available at: http://www.nimh.nih.gov/outreach/partnership-program/how-to-join/index.shtml.
  6. Question: The 2013 Solicitation lists several target populations; however, it appears that most of the NIMH Outreach Partners work with children. Are there any issues with organizations that primarily work with adults suffering from chronic mental illness being considered to be an Outreach Partner?
    Answer: Any non-profit organization that conducts outreach and education focused on mental health is eligible to apply for this Program if it meets the Program Requirements, Organizational Eligibility, and Capabilities criteria as stated in the 2013 Solicitation. Detailed information about the Program Requirements, Organizational Eligibility, and Organizational Capabilities can be found at: http://www.nimh.nih.gov/outreach/partnership-program/solicitation-process/2013-nimh-outreach-partnership-program-solicitation.shtml#requirements.
    Note: In reference to target populations, Task 3 is the activity that requires Outreach Partners to conduct outreach to populations that experience mental health disparities, which includes, but is not limited, to children. For the purposes of Task 3, mental health disparities populations are defined by race or ethnicity, age (e.g., children, adolescents, transitional age youth, older adults), education or income, disability status, geographic location, risk status related to sex and gender, and among other populations identified to be at-risk for health disparities such as immigrants, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI), and military service members and their families, including adults suffering with mental illnesses.
  7. Question: Is a small organization with an annual budget of $2 million eligible to apply for the Program?
    Answer: Yes, if the organization meets the Program Requirements, Organizational Eligibility, and Organizational Capabilities as described in the Outreach Partnership Program 2013 Solicitation. Detailed information about the Program Requirements, Organizational Eligibility, and Organizational Capabilities can be found at: http://www.nimh.nih.gov/outreach/partnership-program/solicitation-process/2013-nimh-outreach-partnership-program-solicitation.shtml#requirements.
  8. Question: Does a small organization with an annual budget of $2 million need a referral or letter of support from its county office?
    Answer: No. Letters of support or referrals from county offices are not required.
  9. Question: If an organization is currently not registered in the System for Award Management (SAM) (http://www.sam.gov ), could it register and be considered for an NIMH Outreach Partner position?
    Answer: NIMH requires applicants to have an active account in the SAM at the time of their proposal submission. Organizations without an active account in the SAM at that time are required to provide a valid justification to be considered. Note: Organizations must have an active account in SAM to be awarded an NIMH Outreach Partner position.

Organizational Capabilities

  1. Question: Is it a hindrance to meeting the appropriate staffing criteria if an organization is run solely by volunteers?
    Answer: Applicants must demonstrate in their proposal that their organization has adequate staffing (paid or unpaid) to meet the Program Requirements.
  2. Question: Is the NIMH Outreach Partnership Program interested in statewide agencies with a broader focus?
    Answer: Non-profit organizations that conduct statewide outreach focused on mental health are invited to submit proposals; however, mental health need not be their sole focus.

Statement of Work

Task 1: Managing the Project

  1. Question: What are the tracking requirements for Outreach Partners?
    Answer: Outreach Partners are required to track data and information about their outreach and education activities as it relates to the Outreach Partnership Program. For example, Outreach Partners track the types of NIMH materials and information disseminated, methods used to disseminate these materials and information (e.g., listserv, newsletter, website, traditional and online media outreach, etc.), number of individuals who received these materials, and how NIMH information is incorporated into their organization’s outreach activities and/or in materials. This information is reported to NIMH on a quarterly basis.

Task 2: Disseminating NIMH Research Findings and Science-based Educational Materials

  1. Question: What types of materials are Outreach Partners required to disseminate?
    Answer: Outreach Partners are required to disseminate NIMH publications and educational materials such as brochures and Science News (http://www.nimh.nih.gov/news/science-news/index.shtml) as well as announcements about opportunities to participate in clinical trials and other studies. Information about studies being conducted at NIMH in Bethesda, MD is provided each month through the Update e-newsletter. Information about state-specific studies can be found at ClinicalTrials.gov .

Task 3: Conducting Outreach on Mental Health Disparities

  1. Question: How is “low income” defined for purposes of conducting Outreach on Mental health Disparities?
    Answer: In the 2013 Solicitation, income is one of a number of factors associated with disparities in mental health. An income threshold has not been established; however, low income or low social economic status is defined as individuals who come from a family with an annual income below established low-income thresholds. These low-income thresholds, published by the U.S. Bureau of the Census, are based on family size and are adjusted annually based on changes in the Consumer Price Index. They also are adjusted by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary for use in all health professions programs. More information about the HHS 2013 Poverty Guidelines can be found at: http://aspe.hhs.gov/poverty/13poverty.cfm .

Task 4: Advancing Research

  1. Question: Are Outreach Partners required to recruit volunteers for NIMH-sponsored clinical trials?
    Answer: Outreach Partners do not recruit participants for NIMH-funded clinical trials; however, they are required to disseminate information to the public about opportunities for volunteer participation in NIMH and other NIH-funded research studies as part of Task 4, Advancing Research. Outreach Partners typically post information about NIMH-funded clinical trials on their organization’s website and/or in e-newsletters. NIMH provides text once a month for select studies taking place at the NIH campus in Bethesda, MD through the Update e-newsletter. Outreach Partners find information about studies taking place in their states through the clinicaltrials.gov website.
  2. Question: How do applicants find out what NIMH-funded trials are actively recruiting participants in their state?
    Answer: Applicants can find out what NIMH-funded trials are actively recruiting in their state by visiting the NIMH Clinical Trials website at: http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/trials/index.shtml.
    A map with a breakdown by state of NIMH and other NIH-sponsored studies that are recruiting participants can be found at: http://www.clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/results/map/click?term=Behaviors+and+Mental+Disorders%5BCONDITION-BROWSE-BRANCH%5D&recr=Open&fund=01&map.x=163&map.y=177 .

Proposal Instructions

  1. Question: Do applicants need to submit any information or take any other steps prior to submitting a proposal to NIMH Outreach Partnership Program?
    Answer: Applicants are not required to submit any information prior to submitting a proposal to NIMH; however, applicants must have an active account in the System for Award Management (http://www.sam.gov ) at the time of proposal submission. Instructions for submitting proposals can be found at:
    http://www.nimh.nih.gov/outreach/partnership-program/solicitation-process/2013-nimh-outreach-partnership-program-solicitation.shtml#proposal-instructions.
  2. Question: Can an organization submit an executive summary and program description to be considered for an Outreach Partnership?
    Answer: Submitting a program description and executive summary is not sufficient to be considered for an Outreach Partnership position. Organizations interested in applying to become an Outreach Partner are required to submit a full proposal by August 22, 2013. Instructions for submitting proposals can be found at:
    http://www.nimh.nih.gov/outreach/partnership-program/solicitation-process/2013-nimh-outreach-partnership-program-solicitation.shtml#proposal-instructions.

Inquiries

  1. Question: Do organizations planning to submit a proposal need to submit a letter of intent?
    Answer: No, organizations are not required to submit a letter of intent.
  2. Question: As a current Outreach Partner, do we need to submit a letter of inquiry? If yes, what should the letter of inquiry cover?
    Answer: Applicants are not required to submit a letter of inquiry.
  3. Question: What type of information needs to be included when submitting an inquiry?
    Answer: Questions related to this solicitation had to be submitted by June 21, 2013.