A request for applications (RFA) with set aside is proposed, entitled “Women's Reproductive Health Research Career Development Program” using the K12, Physician Scientist Award (Program) grant mechanism.
The WRHR Program was initiated by NICHD in 1998 in response to concerns about the need for greater numbers of Ob/Gyn physician scientists in women's reproductive health. The purpose of the RFA is to continue ongoing efforts to expand the cohort of physician scientists that promote the performance of research and transfer of findings that would benefit the health of women. The WRHR Program is structured to build a national capacity of Ob/Gyn junior faculty trained in women's reproductive health research. This cadre of well-qualified academic Ob/Gyn investigators will meet the need for highly skilled scientists with a clinical background who can address the increasing research opportunities in obstetrics and gynecology. As of May 2013, 211 Ob/Gyn junior faculty have been appointed to the WRHR Program. Many of them hold leadership positions in academia. A significant proportion have applied for and been awarded research grants.
The scope of the WRHR Program encompasses all areas of Ob/Gyn research. The emphasis of a WRHR scholar’s scientific project is on basic science, translational and/or clinical research. The focus is on scientific areas relevant to general obstetrics and gynecology and/or its subspecialties: Maternal and Fetal Medicine, Gynecologic Oncology, Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility, and Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery (Urogynecology). Of particular interest is a relevant area such as adolescent gynecology. A critical aspect of the WRHR Program is that each scholar is guaranteed at least 75% protected research time.
The major objectives of the WRHR Program are to (1) bridge clinical training with advanced research career development, (2) provide Ob/Gyn junior faculty with state of the art training in women’s reproductive health research in an academic department, (3) stimulate women’s reproductive health research over a variety of disciplines, and (4) deliver a mentored research experience for Ob/Gyn junior faculty leading to a career as an independent investigator.
Estella Parrott, MD, MPH
Gynecologic Health and Disease Branch
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