A new funding opportunity from the Wisconsin Partnership Program at the UW School of Medicine and Public Health will help UW-Madison researchers and community organizations respond to the immediate challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The COVID-19 Response Grant Program will help community organizations and UW-Madison researchers respond to the challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic. Community organizations and UW-Madison faculty and academic staff with principal investigator (PI) status may apply for funding.

The COVID-19 Response Grant Program is a strategic, flexible, rapid-response mechanism designed to support innovative, responsive, high-impact projects that aim to improve the health of the people of Wisconsin by lessening the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic through scientific, medical, or public health approaches and/or by supporting those most at risk or experiencing the greatest disparities in care.

Funding scope and duration

Priority during this funding cycle will be given to proposals taking immediate action to address the COVID-19 pandemic. The Wisconsin Partnership Program will provide up to $1.5 million, directing $750,000 to support community-led projects and $750,000 to support faculty-led projects. Award amounts will range between $25,000 and $150,000 based on proposed budgets, for a duration no longer than 12 months. The exact number of awards will be determined based upon the merit of the proposals received and the funding amount requested by successful applicants.

Applicant eligibility

Community organizations and UW-Madison faculty and academic staff with Principal Investigator (PI) status may apply for funding.

Community-led projects

Community applicants must be a Wisconsin-based nonprofit, tax exempt, 501(c)(3) organization or a tribal or government entity.

While this grant mechanism does not require an academic partner, working in collaboration with a partner within the UW System or UW-Extension is encouraged. Academic partners can include UW-Madison faculty or academic staff with temporary or full Principal Investigator (PI) status.

Examples of eligible community-led projects include:

  • development of community-based/community-responsive infrastructure to distribute food, medication or other immediate health-related needs to those experiencing the greatest disparities in access as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic
  • developing and implementing outreach mechanisms to provide mental health support to those at greatest risk for suffering from social isolation
  • development and implementation of outreach mechanisms to provide information about basic health resources to communities (e.g., where to find food, how to access enrichment activities for children, and effective risk reduction efforts and models that are used across the state)
  • training for community health workers to provide remote education on COVID-19 infection prevention
  • innovative community-designed responses to the short-term impact of COVID-19 on the social determinants of health with consideration of the expected health-related socio-economic impacts that result from this pandemic

Faculty-led projects

A principal investigator (PI) is required and must have an appointment as a UW-Madison faculty member or academic staff with permanent PI status.

Examples of eligible faculty-led projects include:

  • a novel idea or approach to specifically address, contain or understand COVID-19
  • development of novel or improved pharmacologic and non-pharmacologic/device treatment approaches for COVID-19
  • infrastructure development to address challenges such as distribution of personal protective equipment or COVID-19 tests
  • advancing clinical knowledge, improved diagnosis or management of COVID-19
  • advancing knowledge regarding health policy or healthcare delivery issues related to COVID-19
  • innovative training and development of healthcare professionals and/or biomedical scientists to better address statewide needs and healthcare practice to address the COIVD-19 pandemic
  • development of innovative models of patient care to improve COVID-19 outcomes

Application materials and links

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