Funding Opportunity Announcements: Unintentional Injury
CDC’s National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (Injury Center) announces the availability of funding for Small Business Innovation Research in the following four areas:
- Innovations in Electronic Health Record (EHR) Systems in Primary Care to Reduce Older Adult Falls
- Developing a Fall Detection System for Older Adults
- Innovations to Reduce Traffic Deaths and Injuries
- Innovations to Reduce Residential Fire Deaths and Injuries
The funding announcement can be found at: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/
Funding/sbir.htm. The application due date is December 5, 2014. The mechanism of support is a grant. More details are provided below about each topic area.
Funds Available and Anticipated Number of Awards:
Funding is available for Phase I and Phase II projects.
The objective of Phase I is to establish the technical/scientific merit and feasibility of the proposed research or research and development (R&D) efforts. Awards for Phase I projects are $150,000 for a 6 month project period.
The objective of Phase II is to continue the research or R&D efforts initiated in Phase I. Awards for Phase II projects can be up to $1,000,000 for a project period up to 2 years.
The number of awards is contingent upon available CDC funds and the submission of a sufficient number of meritorious applications.
Only United States small business concerns (SBCs) are eligible to submit applications for this opportunity. Other organization types can partner with SBCs on SBIR projects, for example through consultant or contractual arrangements. In Phase I, a minimum of two-thirds or 67% of the research or analytical effort must be carried out by the SBC. In Phase II, a minimum of one-half or 50% of the research or analytical effort must be carried out by the SBC.
Falls and their associated injuries are a growing public health concern—responsible for over 20,000 deaths and 2.3 million emergency department visits nationwide, and costing over $30 billion annually. Health care providers can prevent falls through clinical falls risk assessment, treatment and referral. CDC has developed a comprehensive fall prevention toolkit for health care providers, STEADI. Innovations in Electronic Health Record (EHR) systems significantly could increase adoption of the STEADI tool kit and clinical practice guideline more broadly.
The goals of this project include developing innovative EHR technology that will facilitate health care providers’ use of fall risk assessment procedures, treatment, and referrals within the primary care practice setting and simultaneously streamline health care reimbursement procedures. Another goal of this project is the development of a module on the STEADI toolkit that could be embedded within existing EHR systems to help with clinical decision support and a reimbursement module.
Older adults who fall often restrict their activities and social contacts, which can impair their quality of life. Technological systems have been developed to broadcast an alert when an older adult falls – discriminating between a fall event and the normal activities of living. Systems can use environmental sensors (e.g., cameras, floor sensors) and/or wearable devices (e.g., accelerometers with electronic sensors on clothing). Using such systems can increase older adults’ confidence and independence.
The goals of this project include developing or enhancing innovative assistive technology that can facilitate detecting older adult falls. Developers must include older adults in the development process and also include procedures for protecting older adults’ privacy. The technology should be amenable to testing with older adults in realistic settings and for extended time periods to evaluate real-world applicability. Consideration must be paid to reducing the number of false alarms as well as inappropriate alerts, so as to increase the likelihood of adoption in geriatric practice (e.g., by encouraging patient use).
Traffic crashes account for half of all unintentional injury deaths, are the leading cause of death for people ages 5–34 in the United States, and result in nearly 5 million serious injuries. In one year, the cost of medical care and productivity losses associated with traffic injuries in the United States exceeded $99 billion. Motor vehicle crashes result from a combination of environmental, human behavioral and vehicle-related factors. Modifying any or all can substantially alter the risks of a crash, and the chances of survival. Currently, there are limited accessible means for warning drivers of impending dangers such as perceptual deficits, driver error, hazardous road conditions and environments, and suboptimal vehicle performance that may influence crash risks. Drivers need such tools to make life-saving decisions easier and more automatic.
CDC is particularly interested in the development of improved environmental, engineering, and human factor controls (including retrofit vehicle solutions) with the potential to reduce motor vehicle crashes and the injuries that result. Projects might include the development of real-time technologies such as “cues to safe action” while driving based on driver fitness, vehicle performance characteristics, environmental conditions, and road -based information. Technologies might also include sensors that detect alcohol, or driving motions and activity of individuals with license sanctions and restrictions. Technology that can be applied in both occupational driving and private vehicle use in domestic rural settings is of high interest, along with applications of this technology to assist persons with cognitive or psychomotor limitations (e.g., persons who become distracted while driving, drowsy driving and fatigue, alcohol impaired or drug impaired driving, and age-related changes). Innovations that would be suitable for overseas applications in low and middle-income countries are highly desirable.
Deaths from fires and burns are the third leading cause of fatal home injury. On average in the United States in 2010, someone died in a fire every 169 minutes with 85% of these deaths occurring in homes. In 2010, fire departments responded to 384,000 home fires in the United States, which claimed the lives of 2,640 people (not including firefighters) and injured another 13,350. Fire-related injuries are expensive with one year of fatal and nonfatal fire/burn injuries totaling $1.3 billion in medical costs alone. Smoke alarms are an important device to alert residents to fire danger. No smoke alarms were present in more than one-third (38%) of the home fire deaths. However, functionality is also important; in one-quarter (24%) of the home fire deaths, smoke alarms were present but did not sound, many due to missing, disconnected or dead batteries. More than one of every three (36%) fatal fire victims never wakes up before being injured. Even functioning smoke alarms may not awaken young children or older adults. These groups may have difficulty hearing the alarm, alerting or responding to it, or exiting the house.
CDC is interested in the development and improvement of technologies for fire prevention, alerting of residential fires, and fire suppression. Projects might include the development or improvement of monitoring/alerting systems with the potential to reduce residential fire occurrences, injuries and deaths. Currently there are limited inexpensive options for reliably alerting children or other at risk groups of the presence of a fire. There is also room for innovation in products that prevent or suppress residential fires, such as sprinkler systems. Technologies might include sensors that detect hazards or dangerous behaviors. Technology that aids persons with cognitive or psychomotor limitations (e.g., children, older adults, disabled persons, impaired persons) is of particular interest. For example, research might investigate what will reliably arouse children or older adults. Technologies that extend, improve, or simplify functionality of alerting systems at competitive prices are also desirable. Developments might include enhanced consumer products to improve outcomes (e.g., improved alerting), prevention of fire (e.g., heating systems, cooking systems), or developments that reduce spread or severity of fires (e.g., improved fire suppression systems, such as sprinkler systems).