Streamlined research funding using short proposals and accelerated peer review : an observational study

Barnett, Adrian G., Herbert, Danielle L., Campbell, Megan, Daly, Naomi, Roberts, Jason A., Mudge, Alison, & Graves, Nicholas (2015) Streamlined research funding using short proposals and accelerated peer review : an observational study. BMC Health Services Research, 15(55).

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Abstract

Background

Despite the widely recognised importance of sustainable health care systems, health services research remains generally underfunded in Australia. The Australian Centre for Health Services Innovation (AusHSI) is funding health services research in the state of Queensland. AusHSI has developed a streamlined protocol for applying and awarding funding using a short proposal and accelerated peer review.

Method

An observational study of proposals for four health services research funding rounds from May 2012 to November 2013. A short proposal of less than 1,200 words was submitted using a secure web-based portal. The primary outcome measures are: time spent preparing proposals; a simplified scoring of grant proposals (reject, revise or accept for interview) by a scientific review committee; and progressing from submission to funding outcomes within eight weeks. Proposals outside of health services research were deemed ineligible.

Results

There were 228 eligible proposals across 4 funding rounds: from 29% to 79% were shortlisted and 9% to 32% were accepted for interview. Success rates increased from 6% (in 2012) to 16% (in 2013) of eligible proposals. Applicants were notified of the outcomes within two weeks from the interview; which was a maximum of eight weeks after the submission deadline. Applicants spent 7 days on average preparing their proposal. Applicants with a ranking of reject or revise received written feedback and suggested improvements for their proposals, and resubmissions composed one third of the 2013 rounds.

Conclusions

The AusHSI funding scheme is a streamlined application process that has simplified the process of allocating health services research funding for both applicants and peer reviewers. The AusHSI process has minimised the time from submission to notification of funding outcomes.

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 81819
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: peer review, health services research, streamlining
DOI: 10.1186/s12913-015-0721-7
ISSN: 1472-6963
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > PUBLIC HEALTH AND HEALTH SERVICES (111700) > Health and Community Services (111708)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Public Health & Social Work
Funding:
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2015 Barnett et al.; licensee BioMed Central.
Copyright Statement: This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly credited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.
Deposited On: 16 Feb 2015 22:07
Last Modified: 18 Feb 2015 19:16

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