Procedures for assessing the technical merit of applications have been instituted to provide for an objective review of applications and to assist the applicant in understanding the standards against which each application will be judged. Critical indicators have been developed for each review criterion to assist the applicant in presenting pertinent information related to that criterion and to provide the reviewer with a standard for evaluation. Review criteria are outlined below with specific detail and scoring points.
Review Criteria are used to review and rank applications. The CD-IFI application has five (5) review criteria.
Criterion 1: Need (30 points)
The extent to which the project(s) identifies the current facility and equipment deficiencies that inhibit the efficient and effective provision of primary health services for the patient population.
The extent to which the applicant demonstrates that the project(s) are immediate and pressing.
The extent to which the applicant demonstrates that significant barriers to health care (e.g., accessibility, underutilized space due to environmental or code concerns, etc.) for the patient population will be addressed with the proposed project(s).
The extent to which facility deficiencies have impacted the ability to adequately staff the health center.
The extent to which the proposed project(s) provide a sufficient justification for the equipment requested and its appropriateness with the facility improvement(s).
The extent to which the applicant demonstrates that the proposed project(s) have not been implemented as of the date of the application submission.
Criterion 2: Response (25 points)
The extent to which the proposed project(s) are reasonable and appropriate given the current state of the existing facility(ies) and/or the health center’s immediate need(s) for the project(s).
The extent to which the proposed project(s) will be immediately and effectively utilized by the health center upon completion.
The extent to which the applicant demonstrates staff capability to utilize the improved space for the proposed project(s).
The extent to which the application demonstrates that the proposed project(s) have not started construction activities and/or issued a construction contract.
The extent to which the applicant proposes a reasonable timeframe for implementing the project(s) during the 2-year project period.
The extent to which the applicant demonstrates it can support operating costs, including increases in utilities, daily maintenance and repair, and capital reinvestment for the project(s).
The extent to which the application demonstrates that the facility improvements resulting from the project(s) will be maintained within the existing operational budget for the health center and that no ongoing section 330 support will be required.
Criterion 3: Impact (10 points)
The extent to which the proposed project(s) will promote the sustainability of the services provided by the health center after project(s) completion.
The extent to which the size and scope of the proposed project(s) will enhance the quality of care and patient outcomes
Criterion 4: Resources/Capabilities (20 points)
The extent to which the applicant can readily implement the project(s) if funding is provided.
The extent to which the applicant identifies an appropriate administrative structure and oversight for the proposal, including:
commitment from the health center’s governing board;
the expertise and experience of the Project Team necessary to successfully manage the project.
The extent to which the applicant identifies appropriate acquisition strategy, policies, and procedures, and how the health center will comply with Federal procurement requirements.
The extent to which the applicant demonstrates it will be able to complete the project on time (within the 2-year project period) and within budget.
The extent to which the applicant demonstrates and documents that other capital funding sources have been secured to support the proposed project.
The extent to which the applicant can demonstrate adequate site control for the proposed project. If site is leased, the applicant demonstrates that the lease is long enough for the full value of the grant-supported improvements to benefit the grant activity.
Criterion 5: Support Requested (15 points)
The extent to which the application provides a complete and reasonable budget.
The extent to which the budget justification provides a clear, detailed, narrative description for each line item, and shows how the costs contribute to the goals and objectives of the project.
The extent to which the application provides a complete and reasonable equipment list that demonstrates how the costs contribute to the goals and objectives of the project.
The extent to which the applicant demonstrates that the proportion of requested Federal grant funds are appropriate given other sources of funds committed/available for the project(s).
Review and Selection Process The Division of Independent Review is responsible for managing objective reviews within HRSA. Applications competing for Federal funds receive an objective and independent review performed by a committee of experts qualified by training and experience in particular fields or disciplines related to the program being reviewed. In selecting review committee members, other factors in addition to training and experience may be considered to improve the balance of the committee, e.g., geographic distribution. Each reviewer is screened to avoid conflicts of interest and is responsible for providing an objective, unbiased evaluation based on the review criteria noted above. The committee provides expert advice on the merits of each application to program officials responsible for final selections for award.
Applications that pass the initial HRSA eligibility screening will be reviewed and rated by a panel based on the program elements and review criteria presented in relevant sections of this funding opportunity announcement. The review criteria are designed to enable the review panel to assess the quality of a proposed project and determine the likelihood of its success. The criteria are closely related to each other and are considered as a whole in judging the overall quality of an application.
A funding priority is defined as the favorable adjustment of combined review scores of individually approved applications when applications meet specified criteria. An adjustment is made by a set, pre-determined number of points. The CD-IFI funding opportunity has one funding priority.
Immediate Facility Improvements Application (10 points): In order to be considered for this Funding Priority, an applicant must indicate a critical/emergency need that has been identified and noted in signed documentation from a local authority (i.e., County building inspector, local fire marshal). Ten (10) points can be provided if all proposed projects within the application include signed documentation from the appropriate local authority that identifies one of the following: