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Telehealth Grant Opportunities for Higher Education Institutions

This post is written by Kelly Carleton, MA, Clinical Operations Director at Mantra Health. She has a background in managing over $6 million in grant funded programs (e.g., federal, private, etc) to support behavioral health integration and telemental health initiatives at a large medical center. If you have questions related to the grant application process or want guidance on where to start, please contact Kelly directly to set up a free consultation call, or you can book an appointment here

Contact information

Kelly Carleton, MA. [email protected]

Background

Grant funding can be an excellent way for higher education institutions to lift pilot projects off the ground or enhance existing programs or services. College and university health and mental health care departments may especially benefit from obtaining additional grant funding to support innovations in health care delivery, particularly in light of the recent Coronavirus-19 (COVID-19) public health emergency which has made telehealth services much more ubiquitous. 

In response to its rising popularity, grants supporting telehealth programs have increasingly become a priority topic due to the ability for telehealth to address major gaps in our healthcare system including care access, quality, and patient/provider satisfaction. The COVID-19 crisis has filtered even more funds to support telehealth and has led to deadline extensions from existing funding announcements. For example, to address health care needs during COVID-19, the Health Resources and Service Administration (HRSA) Telehealth Network and Telehealth Resource Centers Grant Programs authorized $29 million per year through 2025 and has relaxed the criteria for who qualifies as an eligible applicant. (1)

With adequate resources and support from someone experienced in the grant application process, colleges and universities can use grant funds to embark on projects that create opportunities for cutting edge and high quality care for their students.

Grant-Seeking Process: High Level Considerations

Though starting the grant application process takes substantial effort to research and plan, there is a methodological way to approach the process that helps save time and increase one’s chances of being successfully awarded funding. Below are some example questions and suggestions to consider while reviewing various funding opportunities. For more information, please contact Kelly Carleton (contact information above) or book a consultation call here, which will include a thorough review of how to prepare for grant applications.

  • Understand the various types of grants (e.g., federal agencies, regional and national foundations, etc) and determine what funding type best fits the aims of your project.
  • Does your organization fit within the eligibility criteria listed in the RFP/FOA?
  • When are awards announced and funds dispersed, and does this align with your budget needs for the project and fiscal year?
  • Are there any restrictions on how the funds can be used that are going to prevent me from carrying out project activities as desired?

Universal Grants Funding Agencies

The Rural Health Information Hub is a reputable go-to resource for researching telehealth-related grants with filtering options by topic, geography/state, and active/inactive funding. An exhaustive list of grants, including opportunities from NIH/NIMH, SAMHSA, HHS, and NSF, can also be found at grants.gov, with ability to add parameters such as open/close date, applicant eligibility, funding agency, and keyword search.

To facilitate the grant seeking process, we compiled a list of programs and funding sources whose priority areas align with supporting telehealth related programs at your college or university. Of note, the list below ranges from low to high intensity in respect to how much time and effort is required in the submission process. Interested applicants can book a call with our Clinical Operations Director to help analyze the available funding opportunities and what is the right fit for your project idea.

The priority areas, status, and due dates for the programs listed below are subject to change. We strongly recommend periodically checking program websites for active status grants and/or signing up for email notifications for each respective source.

If you don’t see your state below, email me ([email protected]). I will research relevant grants available in your state and send it to you directly by email.

Federal Organizations

Health Resources and Service Administration (HRSA)

  • Telehealth Network Grant Program ($300,000 per year)
  • Evidence-Based Tele-Behavioral Health Network Program ($350,000 per year)
  • Rural Health Care Coordination Program ($250,000 per year)
  • Telehealth Focused Rural Health Research Center Program ($950,000 per year)

United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)

  • Distance Learning & Telemedicine Grants ($1,000,000 total)

Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) (award varies per FOA)

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) (award varies per FOA)

Private Organizations

Booz Allen Foundation ($100,000)

William T Grant Foundation ($600,000 total)

Ittleson Foundation ($45,000)

The Hearst Foundations (~$75,000 total)

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

  • Evidence for Action (~$160,000 per year)

Aetna Foundation (~$50,000 - $100,000 total)

United Health Foundation (award amount negotiable)

Sample State-Specific Grants

Alabama

Alabama Power Foundation (award varies per proposal)

The Daniel Foundation (~$150,000)

Arizona

Vitalyst Health Foundation ($175,000 total)

Northern Arizona Healthcare Foundation ($100,000)

California

California Health Care Foundation ($250,000 total)

Santa Barbara Foundation ($50,000)

Colorado

Telligen Community Initiative Grants ($50,000 total)

Caring for Colorado Foundation ($575,000 total)

The Colorado Health Foundation (award varies per proposal)

Florida

Florida Blue Foundation ($100,000 per year)

Georgia

Healthcare Georgia Foundation (~$75,000 total)

Illinois

Telligen Community Initiative Grants ($50,000 total)

The Blowitz-Ridgeway Foundation ($30,000 total)

Louisiana

Baton Rouge Area Foundation (award varies per proposal)

Blue Cross Blue Shield Foundation of Louisiana ($25,000)

Maryland

Maryand Department of Health (award varies per FOA, up to ~$6,000,000)

The Leonard and Helen R. Stulman Charitable Foundation ($150,000)

Massachusetts

The Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation ($200,000 total)

Peter and Elizabeth Tower Foundation (~$50-100,000)

Michigan

Michigan Health Endowment Fund ($500,000 total)

The Superior Health Foundation ($25,000 per year)

Minnesota

Minnesota Department of Human Services (~$2,000,000)

Medica Foundation (~$200,000)

Missouri

Saint Louis MHB (award varies per proposal)

Health Forward Foundation (award varies per cycle)

Missouri Foundation for Health (award varies per proposal)

New Jersey

The Nicholson Foundation ($500,000 total)

Marion E Kenworthy-Sarah Swift Foundation (~$45,000 total)

New York

New York Community Trust (NYCT) ($200,000 total)

NYS Health Foundation (award varies per FOA, can be over $1,000,000)

The Helmsley Charitable Trust (award varies per FOA, ~$100,000)

Central New York Community Foundation ($150,000 total)

The van Ameringen Foundation ($75,000)

South Carolina

The Duke Endowment (~$150,000; 45% allocated to higher education)

Blue Cross Blue Shield Foundation of South Carolina (~$350,000)

Foundation for the Carolinas (award varies per proposal)

North Carolina

Rural Health Centers Program - Medical Access Plan and Project Grants (award varies per proposal)

The Duke Endowment (~$150,000; 45% allocated to higher education)

Evergreen Foundation ($30,000)

Pennsylvania

Highmark Foundation (award varies per proposal, ~$250,000 total)

Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation (award varies per FOA)

Lee Initiatives ($50,000 total)

Thomas Scatterfood Foundation ($25,000)

The van Ameringen Foundation ($75,000)

Tennessee

United Way of Greater Knoxville (award varies per proposal)

Joe C. Davis Foundation ($25,000)

Weldon F. Osborne Foundation, Inc (award varies per proposal)

HCA Healthcare Foundation ($25-50,000)

Texas

Sid W. Richardson Foundation (award varies per proposal)

Hogg Foundation for Mental Health (award varies per FOA, ~$100,000,000)

Utah

George and Dolores Doré Eccles Foundation (award varies per proposal)

Huntsman Mental Health Institute Seed Grant ($150,000; must work at Univ. of Utah)

Virginia

Virginia Health Care Foundation (award varies per FOA)

Path Foundation ($75-250,000)

Washington

M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust ($50,000 total)

Wisconsin

Charles E. Kubly Foundation (award varies per proposal)

Medica Foundation (~$200,000)

References

  1. Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP. Summary of Healthcare Provisions of COVID-19 Stimulus Package #3 (CARES Act). Last updated: March 27, 2020. Accessed at: https://www.manatt.com/Manatt/media/Documents/Articles/Manatt-Insights_Summary-of-Healthcare-Provisions-of-COVID-19-Stimulus-Package-_3-(CARES-A(205712565-2).pdf