HHS Announces $1 Billion Grant Project: Health Care Innovation Challenge

by Emily J. Cook and Lesley DeRenzo

On November 14, 2011, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (Innovation Center) acting under the United States Department of Health and Human Services announced a funding opportunity entitled the: “Health Care Innovation Challenge.” The Patient Protection & Affordable Care Act established the Innovation Center and provides the funding for meritorious grantees who have successfully demonstrated an ability to implement innovative approaches to deliver high-quality health care services at lower costs for those beneficiaries enrolled in Medicare, Medicaid, and CHIP. 

The purpose behind the Health Care Innovation Challenge is to award pioneering ideas from individuals and entities that will ultimately reduce health care costs, improve quality of health care, and change the way health care services are delivered. To accomplish this objective, the Innovation Center will fund successful grant applicants through cooperative agreements ranging from approximately $1 million to $30 million dollars over a three-year period.

The Innovation Center is looking for grant applications that at a minimum address: (1) how the proposed model will develop and/or deploy health care workers in new and innovative ways, (2) how soon the proposed model will become operational (e.g., it must be capable of coming to realization in 6 months), and (3) how the proposal will be sustainable over time.  

All potential grantees must submit any applications electronically at www.grants.gov. Letters of Intent are due on December 19, 2011. Final applications are due on January 27, 2012. Awards are expected to be announced by the Innovation Center in March 2012.

For more information on the Health Care Innovation Challenge initiative funding opportunity announcement (in addition to upcoming events sponsored by the Innovation Center) please click here

Prospective applicants may submit specific questions about the Health Care Innovation Challenge by sending an e-mail to: InnovationChallenge@cms.hhs.gov