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Call for Research Projects on Primary Health Care in Ethiopia

Project overview

The aim of the project is to strengthen the Primary Health Care system (PHC) /Health Extension Program (HEP) of Ethiopia through generating evidence (implementation research), timely dissemination of results, and supporting knowledge translation and evidence-based decision-making by the Ministry of Health and its partners. The evidences generated are expected to find out challenges/barriers, best practices, innovative methods and status of utilization of services. It also includes assessing status of governance, leadership & management, community engagement, health service utilization and issues related to the demand and supply side of the health care delivery system. Final outputs of the research findings will be disseminated using workshops, reports, issue-briefs and peer-reviewed publications.

Background of the International Institute for Primary Health Care–Ethiopia (IPHC-E)

The Ministry of Health – Ethiopia (MOH) established the International Institute for Primary Health Care- Ethiopia (IPHC-E) in 2016 with funding from Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) and with technical assistance from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (JHSPH). The Institute was established to play a key role in developing a structured, proactive, flexible, problem-solving, and resilient PHC system by building capacity on operational, programmatic and managerial matters, and carrying out PHC systems implementation research and disseminating the lessons learnt and best practices to national and international audience. The Institute has a promising path to become a Center of Excellence in Primary Health in Africa and beyond.

IPHC-E has begun supporting need-based primary health care implementation research since 2017 through a mechanism called “Small Grant” (SG). The “Small Grant” projects are designed and implemented in collaboration with local universities. The Institute also advocates for more research to improve health systems and PHC implementation in Ethiopia. Furthermore, the Institute works closely with the Ministry of Health and its partners in the translation of scientific evidence into policy and practice in Ethiopia and beyond. As part of this research activity, IPHC-E encourages researchers in local universities to pursue PHC related implementation research and generate scientific evidence that will inform policy and practice.

Project goals and target audience 

We at the Institute believe that proper synthesis and translation of all kinds of evidence related to PHC systems should be the backbone of all undertakings in our organization. Successful implementation of this interest requires bridging the gap between those generating evidence and those who should use the evidence. The outputs of the research will be communicated to the Ministry of Health, Regional Health Bureaus, policy makers, researchers, universities, implementing partners and others interested through workshops, issue briefs, reports and web-based forums.

We are looking for researchers to apply for a “Small Grant” support that the Institute provides to conduct implementation research on Primary Health Care/Universal Health Coverage. The researchers are encouraged to develop a proposal on the priority issue indicated below.  We encourage a team approach to develop the proposal. Relevant and well written proposals with better research designs and contemporary issues of PHC are our preferences.

Proposed research areas/priority issues

Our priority area for this year’s call is implementation research related to improving primary health service delivery with a focus on RMNCH (Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn and Child Health).

Further details
  • The available funding could be used to carry-out a newly designed and implemented research activity on the above-mentioned priority issue or to supplement the support for an existing research activity related to the above-mentioned priority issue
  • We encourage a multi-disciplinary approach
  • A team of experts recruited from universities, MOH and the Institution’s senior staff (Panel of reviewers) will evaluate the proposal (2 stage process). Proposals that fulfill all criteria will be evaluated.
  • shortlisted applicants may be asked to make a presentation
  • The maximum funding amount for a research project is $10,000 and a total of five research projects will be funded upon a grant received from Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
  • The research must begin in January 2024, and be completed until July 30, 2024
  • At least one manuscript should be prepared from the results of the funded project which will be considered as a final report
  • IPHC-E must be acknowledged as a funding source in all manuscripts and presentations that describe the findings of the research.
  • Funding will be provided only to local research university staff members.  If the PI is a PhD student, the registration should be in a local university
  • The PI has not received a grant from IPHC-E in the last 2 years.
  • Female candidates are highly encouraged to apply (At least 2 out of 5 grants will be awarded to female PI’s).
  • The award winner’s institution must agree that the funds will be expended for the purpose(s) described in the application, that there is no duplicate funding for these purposes, and that no portion of the award will be used to pay for indirect costs or institutional overhead. IPHC-E funds cannot be used for the purchase of capital equipment. The recipient’s Institution and the PI must sign on the Agreement.
  • Financial report and copies of evidences must be submitted.
  • ethical clearance will be required within a month of award notification
application process

The applicant must provide the following documents:

  •  research proposal that includes summary, background and rationale, objective, and methodology (maximum of 5 pages excluding title page and annex).
  • If the research is ongoing, the applicant will need to provide a description of how the funding will be used to improve the existing research project and describe how the author will provide a separate manuscript to IPHC-E without affecting other parties involved in the project.
  • A budget
  • A workplan
  • Principal Investigator’s/Authors Curriculum Vitae
  • Letter of support from the host university (The support letter should not be signed by an investigator or a co-investigator)
  • Should you need any further information, please do not hesitate to contact tigist via
Application deadline

Application deadline: November 13, 2023

Should you need any further information, please do not hesitate to contact tigist via

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