National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, National Children’s Study (NCS) Centers

Notice Number: NOT-HD-08-004

Key Dates
Release Date: January 14, 2008

Issued by
National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) (http://www.nichd.nih.gov/)

The National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), National Institutes of Health (NIH), is planning to add additional locations and Centers to the National Children’s Study (NCS).  The Government anticipates multiple contract awards to organizations or institutions for the requirement described below in this announcement.  More details will appear in the Request for Proposals (RFP) to be issued in approximately 2 to 4 weeks after the date of the publication of this announcement.  This announcement is intended to inform interested offerors of a planned RFP, of important background information, and of some key requirements essential for responding to the RFP.

Background information on the Study is available on the NCS web site www.nationalchildrensstudy.gov.  The Study is a large, long-term longitudinal study of environmental influences on children’s health and development. This Study will explore a broad range of environmental factors that could influence the health and development of children. For this Study, environment is broadly defined to include biological, chemical, physical, social and behavioral influences on children. The broad range of outcomes includes obesity, diabetes and physical development; injuries; asthma; pregnancy-related outcomes; and mental health issues. The Study’s goal is to better understand how various exposures and genetic factors affect or are associated with children’s health, disease and development.  The Study will include a sample of approximately 100,000 children born in the U.S. beginning with early pregnancy or before and following the children for a wide range of health and developmental outcomes and environmental exposures until at least 21 years of age.  More detail about the design and methods for the NCS can be found in the Research Plan on the NCS web site www.nationalchildrensstudy.gov.

Information will be collected from participants in the Study who reside in one of the 105 locations selected as primary sampling units for the first stage of a multi-stage sampling process.  The Study locations are identified on the map and list of Study Locations at http://www.nationalchildrensstudy.gov/about/locations/. The information will be collected by Study Centers that perform the data collection activities in the Study locations.  It is important to distinguish the Study Centers (organizations or institutions engaged in conducting the study) from the Locations (geographic areas, counties) where eligible participants reside.

In the initial phase of this Study, which was awarded in September of 2005, data will be collected in seven geographic areas in the United States to pilot the full NCS study methods.  Data collection in each of these seven geographic locations is being conducted by a single Study Center, referred to as Vanguard Locations and Centers respectively.  The Vanguard Centers will begin enrollment of Study participants and data collection as a pilot approximately one year prior to initiation of enrollment in the non-pilot full protocol. 

Subsequent to the first Vanguard pilot year, the Study anticipates accruing study locations in three waves or stages separated by one to two years subject to availability of funds.  Contracts for additional Study Centers to conduct data collections in a subset of the Locations were awarded in 2007. The current procurement is for the award of additional contracts to conduct data collections in as many of the 58 additional Locations. These Locations are listed at the end of this announcement.  Additional information about the timing of implementation for these Locations will be provided in the RFP.  The Government anticipates future solicitations to cover data collections in Locations for which there is no successful proposal in response to this solicitation.

To serve as Study Centers for the Study, interested offerors must demonstrate the ability to conduct the Study in one or more of the 58 Study Locations listed at the end of this announcement.  The following background information and some key requirements are provided to alert interested offerors to certain aspects of the anticipated solicitation:  

  1. Offerors proposing to become a Study Center must propose to carry out the Study at one or more of the 58 Study locations listed at the end of this announcement.
  2. Study Locations (generally corresponding to a single county but occasionally groups of adjacent counties, as indicated below) where a proposing Study Center offers to conduct the study must be located either:  a) in the state where the proposing Study Center is located; or b) in a state that is contiguous with the state of the proposing Study Center.  The location of the Study Center is considered to be that of the location of the primary institution in the offeror’s proposal.
  3. Current Study Centers are eligible to submit proposals to serve as Study Centers for additional locations.
  4. Offerors proposing to become a Study Center must demonstrate a clear understanding of the methods and complexity of this Study.
  5. Offerors proposing to become a Study Center must demonstrate an ability to gain community support and input to optimize subject recruitment, retention, and dissemination of Study findings.
  6. Where feasible, offerors are strongly encouraged to propose to be a Study Center for data collection in multiple locations.  There is no limit to the maximum number of locations that an offeror may include in the proposal.
  7. To maintain a representative sample as much as possible with each wave of location accrual, geographic distribution and maintaining sample representativeness, in addition to the technical merit of the proposals, may be factors in determining the timing of implementation of the Study and initiation of recruitment and data collections in Study Locations. 
  8. Only one Study Center will conduct the Study at any single location.  Study Locations (Counties) may not be shared or split between more than one Study Center.
  9. Organizations and institutions are encouraged to establish partnerships and teams with other entities where appropriate or necessary to establish the strongest capability to perform the Study.
  10. A pre-proposal conference to answer questions and provide clarification about this procurement is anticipated and a date and time will be announced with the release of the RFP.  The pre-proposal conference will be held in the Washington, D.C. area and will be a live webcast.  The specific location for the conference will be announced with the release of the RFP and on the NCS web site www.nationalchildrensstudy.gov.

The RFP is anticipated to be posted on FedBizOpps (FBO) website: http://www.fedbizopps.gov, through the NICHD website: http://www.nichd.nih.gov/funding/grantcontract/, and the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts website: http://grants1.nih.gov/grants/guide/index.html in approximately 2 to 4 weeks after the date of the publication of this announcement.  The due date for submission of proposals in response to the RFP is anticipated to be on or about April 1, 2008.  Information in the anticipated RFP supersedes any information in this pre-solicitation announcement.  This acquisition has been designated as full and open competition under the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) code 541712. 

This is not an RFP and this announcement does not commit the Government to award a contract.

List of 58 Study Locations (Counties)

Colbert, AL
Benton, AR
Apache, AZ
Maricopa, AZ
Pinal, AZ
Humboldt, CA
Kern, CA
Denver, CO
Douglas, CO
Litchfield, CT
Baker, FL
Dade, FL
Hillsborough, FL
Orange, FL
Baldwin, GA
Polk, IA
Bear Lake, ID and Lincoln and Uinta, WY
DuPage, IL
Johnson, Union, and Williamson, IL
Will, IL
Marion, IN
Saline, KS
Jessamine, KY
Jefferson, KY
Beauregard and Vernon, LA
Orleans, LA
Montgomery, MD
Cumberland, ME
Genesee, MI
Grand Traverse, MI
Lenawee, MI
Macomb, MI
Becker, Clearwater, and Mahnomen, MN
Stearns, MN
Jefferson, MO
Coahoma, MS
Cumberland, NC
Gaston, NC
Stark, ND
Burlington, NJ
Warren, NJ
Monroe, NY
Cuyahoga, OH
Lorain, OH
Cleveland, OK
Comanche, OK
Spartanburg, SC
Bradley, TN
Cumberland and Morgan, TN
Davidson, TN
Childress and Collingsworth, TX
Dallas, TX
Donley and Hall, TX
Harris, TX
Lamar, TX
Stephens and Young, TX
Grant, WA
Thurston, WA

Inquiries

No collect calls will be accepted. The reference number to be used for this announcement is: NIH-NICHD-NCS-08-21. All correspondence must cite the reference number as provided. Any questions concerning this announcement must be submitted in writing to:

Fred Ettehadieh
Contract Specialist
NIH, NICHD Contracts Management Branch
Office of Acquisitions
NIDDK, NIH
6100 Executive Boulevard
Room 7A-07, MSC 7510
Bethesda, Maryland 20892-7510
Rockville, MD  20852 (for express/courier service; non-USPS service)
Email: fe19w@nih.gov

Elizabeth Osinski
Contracting Officer
NIH, NICHD Contracts Management Branch
Office of Acquisitions
NIDDK, NIH
6100 Executive Boulevard
Room 7A-07, MSC 7510
Bethesda, Maryland 20892-7510
Rockville, MD  20852 (for express/courier service; non-USPS service)
Email: eo43m@nih.gov


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