A new call for proposals aims to support research that addresses the system-wide changes required to achieve regional health targets within the framework of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Applications from Bolivia, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua, Paraguay and Suriname are particularly encouraged. All applications must be received by 15 May 2018. Successful projects will receive a research grant for a maximum of $30,000 (United States dollars). These grants are intended for individuals responsible for program implementation in a public institution in Latin America and/or the Caribbean.
The initiative – Embedding Research for the Sustainable Development Goals (ER-SDG) – is organized by the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), the Alliance for Health Policy and Systems Research (Alliance HPSR) and the UNICEF/UNDP/World Bank/WHO Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases (TDR), and recognizes the need for embedded research that strengthens health programs, policies and systems in Latin America and the Caribbean.
Embedding research in real-world settings is a vital part of ensuring its relevance to specific health systems so that government agencies, research institutions, donors and civil society can more effectively act on recommendations and address systemic gaps. Research questions must therefore originate from those working at the front-line of health delivery and implementation to ensure that existing health programs, policies and systems can be improved in accordance with local settings.
Applicants must submit a concept note on a program, policy or system level problem related to the SDGs. This problem can focus on, but is not limited to, SDG 3: Ensure healthy lives and promote wellbeing for all at all ages, and SDG 10: Reduce inequalities within and among countries. This includes projects on topics such as communicable diseases, noncommunicable diseases, child and maternal health, emergency preparedness and disaster relief, among others. Funding should not be used to pay for additional staff but can be used to cover the costs of researchers’ time, data collection activities and other related research activities.
Previous ER-SDG recipients include a program on the prevention and control of tuberculosis in the incarcerated population; the implementation of a drug interchangeability policy; and the development of a critical path of women affected by Zika and the exercise of their sexual and reproductive rights.