Request Research Help

TO:                  Chairs and Hospital, Nursing and Dentistry Leadership

FROM:             Bradford C. Berk, MD, PhD

Date:               November 23, 2011

Subject:          Health Care Innovation Challenge Funding Opportunity

The Department of Health and Human Services announced the Health Care Innovation Challenge from the CMS Innovation Center, a program that will award up $1 billion in grants to applicants who will implement the most compelling new ideas to deliver better health, improved care and lower costs to people enrolled in Medicare, Medicaid and CHIP, particularly those with the highest health care needs.

Due to the opportunity’s broad objectives, medical center commitment and collaboration will be essential to developing competitive proposals. If you have an idea for the medical center to consider, please complete and submit the attached preliminary proposal form to Harriet Kitzman of the Center for Research Implementation and Translation (CRIT) at by Wednesday, December 7. All submitted ideas will undergo committee review. By December 12, the committee will select ideas to continue developing for full proposal submission to the CMS Innovation Center. Please note, if selected for first round proposal submission, you are expected to submit a letter of intent to apply to the CMS Innovation Center by December 19, 2011. A second round of submissions is described in the funding opportunity announcement. CRIT will continue to work with proposals that are not ready for the first round of submissions to prepare them for the anticipated second round.

The Clinical and Translational Science Institute can provide assistance to individuals interested in applying. Specific expertise is available in study design, participant recruitment, community involvement, program evaluation, training and other areas. Please contact for information.

CMS Innovation Center- Health Care Innovation Challenge:

The objectives of this initiative are to:

  • Engage a broad set of innovation partners to identify and test new care delivery and payment models that originate in the field and that produce better care, better health, and reduced cost through improvement for identified target populations.
  • Identify new models of workforce development and deployment and related training and education that support new models either directly or through new infrastructure activities.
  • Support innovators who can rapidly deploy care improvement models (within six months of award) through new ventures or expansion of existing efforts to new populations of patients, in conjunction (where possible) with other public and private sector partners.

Awards will range from approximately $1 million to $30 million for a three-year period.  Applications are open to providers, payers, local government, public-private partnerships and multi-payer collaboratives.  Each grantee project will be monitored for measurable improvements in quality of care and savings generated.

The funds shall be used to implement and evaluate models that support system transformation toward higher quality care at lower costs. Award dollars cannot be used for specific components, devices, equipment, or personnel that are not integrated into the entire service delivery and payment model proposal. CMS will not fund proposals that replicate models that CMS is currently testing in other initiatives. Finally, given the breadth of models that could be submitted, CMS will not fund proposals that cannot monitor, evaluate, and report on the progress and impact of their program in a timely manner.

The Health Care Innovation Challenge will encourage applicants to include new models of workforce development and deployment that efficiently support their service delivery model proposal.  Enhanced infrastructure to support more cost effective system-wide function is also a critical component of health care system transformation, and applicants are encouraged to include this as an element of their proposals.

Key CMS Innovation Center deadlines include:

  • Letter of Intent: December 19, 2011
  • Proposals: January 27, 2012
  • Anticipated Award Date: March 30, 2012

Click here to review the CMS Innovation Center’s funding opportunity announcement.

To review other health care reform –related funding opportunities, click here.


Bradford C. Berk, M.D., Ph.D.

Senior VP for Health Sciences and 

CEO of Medical Center and Strong Health

University of Rochester Medical Center

Box 706, 601 Elmwood Avenue

Rochester, NY  14642

Ph: 585-275-3407    Fax: 585-273-1059


Request Research Help



NIH Funding Acknowledgement ** Important ** All publications resulting from the utilization of CTSI resources are required to credit the CTSI grant by including the NIH FUNDING ACKNOWLEDGEMENT and must comply with the NIH Public Access Policy.