[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 157 (Thursday, August 13, 2020)]
[Pages 49386-49387]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-17516]



Indian Health Service

[Assistance Listing Number 93.933]

Awards Unsolicited Proposal for the Health Communication 
Initiative Program

AGENCY: Office of Clinical and Preventive Services, Indian Health 
Service, Department of Health and Human Services.

ACTION: Notice of award of a single-source unsolicited grant to Johns 
Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland.


    Recipient: Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland.
    Purpose of the Award: Cooperative agreement to collect, develop, 
package and distribute information to American Indian and Alaska Native 
(AI/AN) communities to address the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)-
specific recommendations on healthcare, in a culturally sensitive way.
    Amount of Award: $127,644 in Fiscal Year (FY) 2020.
    Period of Performance: April 24, 2020-August 24, 2020.
SUMMARY: The Office of Clinical and Preventive Services (OCPS) 
announces the award of a single-source cooperative agreement in 
response to an unsolicited proposal from Johns Hopkins University, 
Baltimore, Maryland. The proposal submitted was not solicited either 
formally or informally by any federal government official.
    OCPS performed an objective review of the unsolicited proposal from 
Johns Hopkins University (JHU) to develop information on proper actions 
to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, in a culturally sensitive way. The 
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (JHSPH) Center for 
American Indian Health (CAIH) mission is to work in partnerships with 
AI/AN communities to raise their health status, self-sufficiency, and 
health leadership to the highest possible level. This mission is 
accomplished through research, training and education, and service. The 
CAIH has more than nine facilities and approximately 100 staff in the 
Southwestern tribal communities to assist the Indian Health Service 
(IHS) in containing and mitigating COVID-19, while building a response 
model and set of communication materials for all IHS regions 
nationwide. The CAIH can draw on broad expertise from JHU for 
additional guidance and recommendations on best practices as the 
situation evolves.
    The materials will be developed from the Centers for Disease 
Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health 
Services Administration (SAMHSA) guidance. Based on an internal review 
of the proposal and the immediate response of the IHS to address the 
COVID-19 public health emergency, OCPS determined that the proposal has 
    The long history between the federal government and Native American 
Tribes and people has often been less than ideal. There are still 
barriers to the Native American community accepting instruction or 
direction from the federal government. There is great value in having a 
third party that has a good history with the community to gather, 
package and deliver recommendations, in a culturally sensitive way, on 
staying safe from this disease, when those recommendations may run 
contrary to cultural norms. This delivery avenue will be more 
acceptable to the community, and will be more readily recognized for 
implementation within AI/AN communities.
    This award is being made noncompetitively because there is no 
current, pending, or planned funding opportunity announcement under 
which this proposal could be competed. OCPS has identified two 
additional key reasons to support rationale for awarding this 
unsolicited proposal:
    1. The JHU CAIH is well known in the AI/AN communities for robust

[[Page 49387]]

communication/messaging networks, research, training, and subject 
matter expertise. The dissemination of critical COVID-19 information 
for tribal communities builds trust, credibility, and integrity of 
promoting a culturally sensitive public health approach around the 
    2. The JHU CAIH is uniquely positioned to provide culturally 
specific subject matter expertise drawn from a direct care services or 
``boots on the ground'' approach. The CAIH has nearly 40 years of 
collaboration with Native American tribes and supports public health 
interventions in more than 140 tribal communities in over 21 states. 
The breadth of knowledge and existing partnerships will enhance 
dissemination of information nationally.
    Legislative Authority: The Snyder Act, 25 U.S.C. Section 13; the 
Indian Health Care Improvement Act, 25 U.S.C. Section 1621b; and 
Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, Public Law 

[email protected] or by telephone at 301-590-5421.

Michael D. Weahkee,
RADM, Assistant Surgeon General, U.S. Public Health Service, Director, 
Indian Health Service.
[FR Doc. 2020-17516 Filed 8-12-20; 8:45 am]