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Department of Family Medicine, VCU Medical Center, Virginia Commonwealth University Department of Family Medicine and Population Health Virginia Commonwealth University VCU Medical Center

VCU Department of Family Medicine

Research

Grant Generating Project

Researching innovative treatmentsLeading family practice research often involves interdisciplinary teams, multimethod approaches and the collection of resource-intensive primary data in the practice setting. However, the cost structures of most medical schools, community residency programs and practices do not provide salary support for family physicians or family medicine researchers from other disciplines to engage in research or scholarship.

As a result, the biological, behavioral, health services and medical sciences depend primarily on external grant support for sustained productivity. For family practice to significantly grow its research capacity, investigators in the discipline must be able to apply for and obtain major research grants from one of three primary sources — the pharmaceutical industry, the federal government and foundations.

This medical research funding is by far the largest level in the history of the world, yet family medicine researchers have not tapped into this resource. To develop successful research grant applications, family practice researchers need consultation, time, peer review and technical assistance. One or more — or all — of these resources often are lacking in their institution, department, division, residency program, practice or other organization.

The Grant Generating Project has successfully brought together many of these components into a “fellowship without walls” for family practice researchers who lack them in their home environments. The GGP fits with the research and scholarship capacity-building needs of family medicine, specifically under the American Academy of Family Physicians’ Plan to Enhance Family Practice Research.

Benefits

In addition to the potential for major research grant funding, participation in GGP has other potential benefits to the home department of participating GGP fellows. Family medicine researchers who wish to learn to write successful research grants as part of their development and training can take advantage of the GGP fellowship.

With its emphasis on critical thinking, analysis and writing, the skills learned in GGP can be generalized to other grant-writing projects and scholarly writing activities. Such training should have long-term benefits in preparation for future grant development activities.

GGP fellows and their departments will also derive benefit from networking activities, gaining valuable contacts with other family medicine researchers throughout North America.

Contact

Please contact Daniel Longo in the GGP Program Office at drlongo@vcu.edu or (804) 828-9652 with any questions about the program content and expectations.