Wednesday, April 14, 2010

HRSA to Help in the Pacific

Spread across 107 inhabited islands covering an expanse of ocean larger than the continental U.S., the affiliated Pacific Basin jurisdictions with a diverse population needs assistance to address healthcare needs. However, it is difficult to get community involvement along with technical assistance in this enormous region to apply successfully for HHS funding opportunities.

To help the Pacific region, the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) on April 1st, announced the release of FY 2010 grant funding to address the problem. The funding will be used to form and support a regional health policy body to be called the “Regional Collaborative for the Pacific Basin” (RCPB). Specifically, the grant funding will help set up the Regional Collaborative to help improve healthcare for residents in American Samoa, Guam, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Republic of Marshall Islands, and the Republic of Palau.

The Regional Collaborative will be organized to serve as a formal mechanism to discuss common health interests, problems and concerns, to promote and enhance a regional approach for the cost-effective sharing of resources, provide data and health information, and provide for expert advice to advance healthcare in the Pacific Basin and the Pacific Basin jurisdictions.

Specifically, the Regional Collaborative will develop and advance a strategic plan, promote and plan partnerships across different regions to help seek funding sources, provide grant writing assistance, obtain community engagement, and create a regional Primary Care Office (PCO) for the six U.S Affiliated Pacific Basin jurisdictions.

HHS funding opportunities are available to strengthen primary care and public health delivery systems, to support rural health outreach and network activities, to enhance telehealth and distance education capacities, support health workforce development, do community-based participatory research, do health disparities research, and find funding for a variety of chronic, infectious, and behavioral conditions. Many of these funding opportunities could be of great value to healthcare in the Pacific region.

Eligible applicants must be public or private non-profit entities that are part of an established network representing the six U.S Affiliated Pacific Basin jurisdictions. Awards will provide funding for Fiscal years 2010-2014 but funding beyond the first year is dependent on funds. HRSA is anticipating that between $429,500 and $679,500 will be available annually to fund one cooperative agreement.

The letter of intent is due on April 30, 2010 and the final application due date is May 21, 2010. For more information, go to or contact Lynnette S. Araki, at (301) 443-6204.