The alarming state of health disparities among vulnerable populations in the United States is a serious public health concern and has garnered wide-spread attention from the United States government leadership (e.g., HHS, Congress), the NIH, and the public, especially with the current COVID-19 pandemic.
Addressing health disparities will require a multi-level approach so it is important to know what has been done, what is currently being done, and what research still needs to be done in this area. The purpose of this webpage is to house active funding opportunity announcements as well as list other NIDA initiatives focused on reducing health disparities and improving the health of vulnerable populations. This list of FOAs will be updated periodically so that we are displaying current FOAs, but for the most current list of FOAs, please see the NIH Guide. Below we have provided a brief definition of a health disparity and populations affected by health disparities.
What is a health disparity?
A health disparity is defined as “a particular type of health difference that is closely linked with social, economic, and/or environmental disadvantage. Health disparities adversely affect groups of people who have systematically experienced greater obstacles to health based on their racial or ethnic group; religion; socioeconomic status; gender; age; mental health; cognitive, sensory, or physical disability; sexual orientation or gender identity; geographic location; or other characteristics historically linked to discrimination or exclusion” (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and Healthy People 2020).
What populations are adversely affected by health disparities?
NIH-designated U.S. health disparity populations, which include Blacks/African Americans, Hispanics/Latinos, American Indians/Alaska Natives, Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders, socioeconomically disadvantaged populations, underserved rural populations, and sexual and gender minorities living in the 50 States, tribal lands, and the U.S. territories.
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The Secretary’s Advisory Committee on National Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Objectives for 2020. Phase I report: Recommendations for the framework and format of Healthy People 2020 [Internet]. Section IV: Advisory Committee findings and recommendations [cited 2010 January 6]. PDF Available
NIDA Health Disparities Funding Opportunity Announcements
Community Interventions to Address the Consequences of the COVID-19 Pandemic among Health Disparity and Vulnerable Populations (R01- Clinical Trial Optional)
This funding opportunity announcement encourages applications to implement and evaluate community interventions testing 1) the impacts of mitigation strategies to prevent COVID-19 transmission in NIH-designated health disparity populations and other vulnerable groups; and 2) already implemented, new, or adapted interventions to address the adverse psychosocial, behavioral, and socioeconomic consequences of the pandemic on the health of these groups. FOA: PAR-20-237 Expiration Date: December 2, 2020
Notice of Special Interest (NOSI): Competitive and Administrative Supplements for Community Interventions to Reduce the Impact of COVID-19 on Health Disparity and Other Vulnerable Populations
Those experiencing health disparities prior to the COVID-19 pandemic are at increased risk of infection and other COVID-19 related consequences (e.g., job loss, unpaid leave, lost wages). Research is needed to test community interventions focused on the prevention (or slowing) of COVID-19 transmission, evaluate local and state policies and programs intended to mitigate COVID-19 exposure and improve adherence, and reduce the negative impact of the multifaceted consequences on the health of populations who experience health disparities and other vulnerable groups. This work may include leveraging and scaling existing resources (e.g., health education materials, technology, social media, mass media, social support networks, social services). In domains and populations in which the evidence base is limited, the development, testing, and implementation of novel or adapted interventions to address the negative health consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic (including the unintended health consequences of population-level interventions) may also be needed to address the unique needs of populations.
FOA: NOT-MD-20-022 Expiration Date: December 30, 2020
Development and Testing of Novel Interventions to Improve HIV Prevention, Care, and Program Implementation (R34-Clinical Trial Optional)
This funding opportunity announcement encourages formative research, intervention development, and pilot-testing of interventions. For the purposes of this FOA, "intervention" may include behavioral, social, or structural approaches, as well as combination biomedical and behavioral approaches that prevent the acquisition and transmission of HIV infection, or improve clinical outcomes for persons who are HIV infected. Text notes that disparities often exist which disadvantage populations who have been marginalized by income, resources, gender, sexuality, race/ethnicity or geography.
FOA: PA-18-780 Expiration Date: May 8, 2021
Increasing Uptake of Evidence-Based Screening in Diverse Adult Populations (R01 Clinical Trial Optional)
This funding opportunity announcement invites applications that seek to understand strategies to reduce disparities in the uptake of evidence-based screening (e.g. screening recommendations proven to be effective based on rigorous systematic review of scientific evidence by authoritative committees) across the adult lifespan. Research supported by this initiative should enhance the screening process related to use: (1) in diverse populations, (2) in diverse clinical and community settings, and/or (3) with traditional, non-traditional and/or allied health care providers.
FOA: PA-18-932 Expiration Date: January 8, 2022
Getting To Zero: Understanding HIV Viral Suppression and Transmission in the United States (R01 Clinical Trial Optional
The purpose of this funding opportunity announcement is to support grants to improve understanding of viral suppression and HIV transmission in the U.S. using population-level epidemiology, novel tools from data science approaches and m/eHealth, and implementation science research. Data generated through this research will be used to inform and evaluate context-specific HIV control strategies towards the goal of ending the HIV epidemic in the U.S.
FOA: PAR-20-036 Expiration Date: September 8, 2022
New Models of Integrated HIV/AIDS, Addiction, and Primary Care Services (R01 Clinical Trial Required):
New Models of Integrated HIV/AIDS, Addiction, and Primary Care Services (R34 Clinical Trial Required)
The purpose of this funding opportunity announcement is to support the testing of enhanced models of care that optimally integrate HIV, addiction, and primary care services. NIDA is interested in research that addresses gaps related to the delivery of comprehensive, integrated health services to include the full continuum of HIV/AIDS services, addiction prevention and treatment services, and primary care services, with a goal of improving the coordination of care, and improving health outcomes related to HIV and SUD in the US for populations who are at high risk.
FOA: PAR-20-273 Expiration Date: August 12, 2023
FOA: PAR-20-274 Expiration Date: August 12, 2023
Long-Term Effects of Disasters on Health Care Systems Serving Health Disparity Populations (R01- Clinical Trial Optional
The overarching goal of this funding opportunity announcement is to invite robust investigative and collaborative research focused on understanding the long-term effects of disasters on health disparity populations and the health care systems that serve them, including the influence of risk factors or vulnerabilities of both the systems and the communities preceding the event(s).
FOA: PA-20-172 Expiration Date: September 8, 2023
Research to Improve Native American Health (R21 Clinical Trials Optional)
The purpose of this funding opportunity announcement is to support developmental/exploratory studies in preparation for health promotion, disease prevention, treatment, or treatment services research to improve health in Native American (NA) populations. Existing data suggest that significant acute and chronic disease inequities exist for NA populations. Concurrently, NA populations experience unique sociopolitical, historical, and environmental stressors and risks that may exacerbate health conditions and/or impact the effectiveness of existing solutions to address the conditions. They also possess unique strengths and resiliencies that can mitigate stressors or inform intervention strategies. Through this announcement, culturally informed exploratory/developmental research is sought that builds upon community knowledge, resources, and resilience to provide foundational knowledge for future science-based, culturally appropriate solutions to reduce morbidity and mortality through identification and remediation of precursors to diseases and disorders and through culturally informed treatment.
FOA: PAR-20-214 Expiration Date: September 8, 2023
Intervention Research to Improve Native American Health (R01 Clinical Trial Optional)
The purpose of this funding opportunity announcement (FOA) is to support research on interventions to improve health in Native American (NA) populations. Existing data suggest that significant acute and chronic disease inequities exist for NA populations. Concurrently, NA populations experience unique sociopolitical, historical, and environmental stressors and risks that may exacerbate health conditions and/or impact the effectiveness of existing solutions to address the conditions. They also possess unique strengths and resiliencies that can mitigate stressors or inform intervention strategies. Through this initiative, intervention and related research is sought to build upon community knowledge, resources, and resilience to test science-based, culturally appropriate solutions to reduce morbidity and mortality through identification and remediation of precursors to diseases and disorders and through culturally informed treatment.
FOA: PAR-20-238 Expiration Date: September 8, 2023