Health Services Research & Development

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Call for Scientists to Review Applications for Merit

HSR&D is recruiting scientists* to review proposals for its Scientific Merit Review Program

* clinical experts in a variety of specialty areas (medicine and all its disciplines, nursing, and other health care areas) and social scientists (e.g. psychologists, sociologists, economists, and experts in organization theory).

The role of peer review of the scientific merit of a proposal is a crucial part in the award process. HSR&D relies on the recommendations and scores of peer reviewers in deciding which proposals to fund, as well as to provide constructive feedback and comments to help investigators strengthen unfunded proposals for resubmission.

Many reviewers (VA and non-VA) with varied expertise are needed each year. Reviewers are asked to review specific proposals based on their knowledge, education, experience, and absence of any conflict of interest. HSR&D selects peer reviewers without regard to race, color, national origin, gender, age, disability, religion, or VA affiliation.

Peer reviewers must:

  • have relevant research experience and education;
  • have the ability to effectively analyze research proposals against specific criteria;
  • provide constructive analyses of application strengths and weaknesses;
  • clearly express their evaluation in writing and during peer review discussions; and
  • commit to ensuring the confidentiality of proposals.

HSR&D conducts peer reviews in person and by teleconference. The in person peer reviews are held over a two to three day period in the months of March and August/September at varying locations.

Health Services research is the multidisciplinary field of scientific investigation that studies how social factors, financing systems, organizational structures and processes, health technologies, and personal behaviors affect access to health care, the quality and cost of health care, and quantity and quality of life. Studies in health services research examine outcomes at the individual, family, organizational, institutional, community, and population level. Programs and initiatives focus on a wide range of health issues including the management of complex chronic health conditions, mental and behavioral health, disparities in health care, health care access, women's health issues, implementation, health care informatics, health services genomics, and provider education to improve health outcomes.

If you are interested in serving as a peer reviewer for HSR&D and have expertise in the areas of health services research referenced above, please send an email to vhacoscirev@va.gov with the subject line of "HSR&D SMRB Peer Reviewer Submission". Please attach your resume or curriculum vitae and indicate your area(s) of expertise.