Grant calls at PAR Foundation

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Focus 2021: Infections among elderly

The number and proportion of elderly in the global population is increasing, and for several reasons this is a driver for antibiotic use and antibiotic resistance. Generally speaking, elderly persons are more susceptible to infections, and at the same time infections in elderly are also more difficult to diagnose because typical signs and symptoms are often absent or blunted. Knowledge and guidelines for optimal drug use for elderly are also lacking, in part because clinical trials typically focus on a single condition and on young people. These trials therefore give limited guidance for treatment of elderly with comorbidities.

Antibiotics are among the most frequently newly-prescribed drugs in elderly patients, and between 25% and 75% of antibiotic prescriptions in long-term care facilities for the elderly are thought to be inappropriate. Meanwhile, little research on preventable inappropriate medication use has been carried out in residential elderly care. Most research on antibiotic resistance prevention is done in hospital settings, while most elderly either receive care at home or live in residential care facilities.

Our grant call in 2021 aims to support projects with significant potential to prevent infections and antibiotic resistance among elderly.

Scope of the call

We will fund research, information projects, and/or educational projects that can prevent infections and antibiotic resistance among elderly.

We encourage cross-disciplinary and behavioural science approaches, as well as projects that have high relevance for low- and middle-income countries.

We encourage bold and innovative approaches and applications from young and early-career researchers.

About the grant

The application deadline is March 10th, and we will have a decision before the end of April 2021.

The grant size is maximum 1 M SEK. The budget of a project can be adjusted during the application process. Project time can be up to 3 years.

Who can apply?

Research institutes, non-profit organizations, or individuals can apply. There is no geographical boundary, we accept applications from anywhere in the world.

 

Criteria

  • Importance

The project should have a potential for large impact. This means that if the project becomes successful, it should have a potential to significantly affect the development of antibiotic resistance.

  • Neglectedness

We prioritize funding projects in neglected areas. This criterion is mainly applied on the selection of focus area (in this case, prevention of infections among elderly), but all else equal, we will also prioritize subareas and approaches that appear neglected by other grantmakers.

  • Feasibility

The project should have a plausible likelihood of success. This means that the team should have the capacity and competence to carry out the project in a good way. We do encourage bold and innovative approaches, but as far as previous evidence and knowledge exists that is relevant to the project, it should be used to inform the project design.

  • Potential for catalyst effect 

 We prioritize applications that have potential to lead to additional projects or interventions with large effect, or that can improve the ability of other stakeholders to have a large impact. This could for example be achieved by exploratory research into new fields, or by developing tools that enable improvements of other projects or work in the area.

  • Transparency and accessibility 

We promote transparent reporting of methodology, open access publications, and when appropriate preregistration of research questions. Details will be discussed with applicants during the application process.

Examples of projects that could be supported

Note that this list is to be understood as examples of what we believe might be promising projects, not as an exclusive list of what we are looking for. We welcome applications for other types of projects, as long as they fit the scope of the call.

  • Prevention of infections by, for example:
    • addressing malnutrition among elderly
    • managing immunosenescence
    • improving indoor environment in residential elderly care
    • preventing specific common infections such as pneumonia, CDI or UTI
    • development of evidence for guidelines for infection prevention in residential elderly care or home care of elderly
    • development or testing of training programmes for caregivers, targeting professional or informal caregivers
    • development of evidence for other interventions for infection prevention in residential elderly care or home care of elderly
  • Post-marketing research for antibiotic use in elderly with a specific focus on how to prevent antibiotic use that leads to further infections or high risk of resistance development

Scope boundaries

We will not fund:

  • Development of new antibiotics
  • Stewardship projects targeting direct improvement of prescription practices
  • Participation in conferences or other types of travel grants
  • Information campaigns or educational efforts that do not either 1) have a robust evidence-base to support that it is likely to prevent infections and resistance, or 2) are designed to create such evidence by testing and assessing the effectiveness of a specific strategy

Application process

The first step to apply is to submit an application brief before March 10th. Promising applicants will then get to submit follow-up material including a more detailed project plan and budget. The top applicants will then be interviewed, after which their entire application will be summarized by the foundation in a document that the applicant reviews and approves before submission to the board for a final decision.


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