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Funding Policies and Paylines

NIH funding policies govern all applications and issues related to NIA funding, including those related to the well-being of individuals in clinical studies. NIA has additional funding policies and guidance. Both are described below.

NIH Funding Policies

All relevant extramural funding policies can be found on the NIH Office of Extramural Research's Grants Policy and Guidelines website. Officials from institutions that may be first-time receivers of NIH grant support should read the NIH Welcome Wagon Letter. Materials include comprehensive descriptions of NIH Grants Policies and contact information (addresses and phone numbers) for the NIH offices responsible for managing these policies.

Frequently, NIH revises or introduces new policies. These changes are announced in the NIH Guide and listed in the Notices of NIH Policy Changes. Every several years, policy revisions are incorporated into the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

NIH supports safe and respectful work environments that are free from harassment, including sexual harassment, discrimination, or other forms of inappropriate conduct that can result in a hostile work environment. Read more about how the NIH is Supporting a Safe and Respectful Workplace at Institutions that Receive NIH Funding.

NIA Funding Line and Cost Control Policies

NIA Paylines

Paylines are cut-off points for funding applications. NIA funds most applications in order by percentile or overall impact score. Each fiscal year (FY), NIA sets initial paylines conservatively and sets final paylines later in the year.

The links below detail the paylines for relevant grant programs for each fiscal year.

Applications Requesting $500,000 or More in Direct Costs in Any Year

Applications requesting $500,000 or more in direct costs in any year need to obtain approval before submission. Investigators need to contact their Program Officer at least six weeks prior to the planned submission date.

NOTE: It is highly recommended that you contact your Program Officer as early as possible to ensure that your request is processed.

Please see NIA procedures for applications requesting $500,000 or more in direct costs.

NIA Budget Escalation Policy

Inflationary increases for future year commitments are not permitted. NIA does not allow out-year salary escalations for individuals providing the same effort from the previous budget year’s salary request in competing and renewal applications, regardless of the reason for the requested salary increases, e.g., merit-based or cost of living. This applies to other cost categories as well, e.g., supplies, travel, etc. Any non-inflationary, justified reason for year-to-year increases within a budget category should be clearly stated in the budget justification.

NIA Policies Concerning Specific Grant Mechanisms

NIA Guidance Concerning Research on Human Participants

NIA Guidance on Sharing Data and Other Resources

As always, if you have any questions, please contact your Program Official.

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