APSF/PSMF Patient Safety Curriculum Award (PSCA)


Anesthesia Patient Safety Foundation Logo
Patient Safety Movement Foundation Logo

The 2020 PSCA will be awarded to an anesthesia education investigator for the purpose of modifying the Patient Safety Movement Foundation’s Patient Safety Curriculum to specifically address perioperative patient safety. The awardee will then test the educational efficiency and effectiveness of implementing the modified curriculum in anesthesia training programs across the spectrum of anesthesia professions. This award is for up to $100,000 for a 2-year project. The 2020 award will be made to the sponsoring institution.

See Application Instructions for eligibility and other details.

Proposals will be due by December 31, 2019. The award will be announced March 6, 2020. The project will start May 1, 2020.

Purpose: Modify the current PSMF Patient Safety Curriculum to specifically address perioperative patient safety and test the educational efficiency and effectiveness of implementing the modified curriculum in anesthesia training programs. See Application Overview for more details.
Eligibility: Any anesthesia professional in the United States who has a documented interest and aptitude in anesthesia education and patient safety may apply. See Application Overview for more details.
Amount: Maximum award of $100,000. The maximum indirect cost rate is 15% of total direct costs and must be included in the total $100,000 maximum award.
Duration: Up to two years
Project Time: The amount of time devoted is variable, but a minimum of 10% effort by the Principal Investigator is expected.
Application Dates: Proposal due: December 31, 2019 at 5PM CDT

Submit applications to Stacey Maxwell, APSF Administrator, [email protected]


APSF/PSMF Patient Safety Curriculum Award

Medical CurriculumThe Anesthesia Patient Safety Foundation (APSF) and the Patient Safety Movement Foundation (PSMF) are offering an APSF/PSMF Patient Safety Curriculum Award (PSCA) for the purpose of modifying the Patient Safety Movement Foundation’s Patient Safety Curriculum to specifically address perioperative patient safety and testing the implementation of the modified curriculum in U.S. anesthesia training programs.

The PSCA is a two-year, maximum $100,000 award to an individual and provides funding to a single sponsoring institution of the awardee. The PSCA requires a minimum of 10% unencumbered research time during the duration of the award. The maximum indirect cost rate is 15% of total direct costs and must be included in the total $100,000 maximum award.


The PSMF has developed a Patient Safety Curriculum as part of its Actionable Patient Safety Solutions (APSS). This curriculum may be found at https://patient.sm/apss-curriculum.

The APSF and PSMF are providing this award for the purpose of modifying the PSMF’s patient safety curriculum to be applicable to anesthesia professionals and to address perioperative patient safety principles and issues. Further, implementation of the modified curriculum must then be tested for educational efficiency and effectiveness in anesthesia training programs. Specifically, the modified curriculum should be tested in training programs across the spectrum of anesthesia professionals in the U.S. (i.e., at least one or more anesthesiology residency program, one or more nurse anesthesia training program, and one or more anesthesiologists’ assistants training program).


At the time of the award, applicants must meet all of the following eligibility requirements:

  • Be an anesthesia professional (i.e., anesthesiologist, nurse anesthetist, or anesthesiologist assistant)
  • Hold a full-time position in a Department of Anesthesiology at a U.S. academic institution
  • Have a documented interest in and aptitude for anesthesia education and patient safety

Departmental and Institutional Requirements

  • Commitment to provide the applicant with at least 10% unencumbered time during the duration of the award
  • Unencumbered provision of the facilities and resources required for successful completion of the applicant’s proposed project, as specified in the Application and Budget

The recipient of this award agrees to present the results of the project at a major annual anesthesia meeting and, as appropriate, to a PSMF meeting within the first year after the conclusion of the award. The Department Chair must commit to provide the recipient with the time to present the results of the project, if accepted for presentation. The recipient will be reimbursed for travel costs up to $2,000 to attend and present at the annual meeting, outside of the award funding. The recipient may also be invited by APSF or PSMF to present the results of the project at other forums.


  • During the two years of PSCA-funded project, the recipient must devote a minimum commitment equivalent of 10% of the principal awardee’s full-time appointment to activities directly related to this PSCA-funded project.


  • The total funding amount for the PSCA is $100,000
  • A single award payment of up to $100,000 will be made to the institution at the start of the project; the payment will not be made directly to the award recipient.

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Preparing the APSF/PSMF PSCA Application

Following are the required application elements for the PSCA application:

NOTE: Applications that do not conform to all of the application requirements will not be considered.


The cover page should include general application information. It must include the following sections.

  • Title of the Project
  • Applicant (Principal Investigator) Information: Name of applicant including academic degrees, office address, phone number, fax number and e-mail
  • Other Investigators or Consultants: Names and affiliations of any other investigators or consultants
  • Department Chair Information: Name, office address, and phone number of departmental chairperson
  • Institution Information: Sponsoring institution and name, office address, phone number and e-mail address of the responsible institutional financial officer
  • Project Dates: Start and end dates of proposed project

B. PROJECT ABSTRACT (≤100 words)

The Abstract should explain the proposed project in language understandable to the average clinician. The abstract should state the broad objectives and specific aims of the project, as well as the educational research design and methods that will be used. The abstract should be a succinct and accurate description of the proposed work that can be understood when read apart from the application. The abstract will be used primarily for promotional purposes.


The applicant background information should include a description of the applicant’s aptitude in anesthesia education and patient safety.

D. PROJECT PLAN (≤4 pages)

The project plan is the core of the application. The plan should include the following elements:

  • Approach: The Approach must include the following sections presented in the following order:
    • Hypothesis and Specific Aims: This section must articulate the Aims of the project and, for the implementation phase, the hypotheses to be tested.
    • Detailed Proposed Methods: This section must include a detailed description of the proposed project design. For the implementation phase, the numbers and nature of study participants, the educational procedures to be employed, and the rationale for the testing design should be included.
    • Data Analysis Plan and Sample Size Justification: This section must include an analytical plan with sufficient detail to convince the reviewers of the validity of the anticipated quantitative and qualitative results. It would be prudent to provide evidence of the initial and planned ongoing involvement of an experienced statistician, especially one with a background in education science.
    • Interpretation of Results: This section should describe how the results will address the stated hypotheses and how alternative findings will be interpreted.
    • Study Limitations: This section must provide a comprehensive and realistic description of the project limitations and the methods by which the investigators have (or will) mitigate these
    • Project Management and Detailed Timeline: This section must describe how the PI will organize, plan, and oversee the proposed research. When a team will be involved, the Project Management plan should describe how the team will communicate and interact. Finally, this section should describe how the team will assure that the project is completed on time and within the proposed budget. The project timeline should be presented in a Gantt chart that includes specific milestones and deliverables.


This section should provide evidence that the Applicant is familiar with the most current relevant literature related to this project and will take a rigorous and scholarly approach to it. Please cite only the most relevant and important literature. References should be cited in the order in which they appear in the project plan and should use the format approved by the journal Anesthesiology.


This section describes the readily available relevant institutional facilities and resources that will support the Applicant’s proposed project. Please provide evidence (i.e., specific examples) of how the institution has invested in and supported prior patient safety and education projects that have led to peer-reviewed journal publications. The Review Committee considers the institutional infrastructure important to the success of new patient safety investigators.

G. HUMAN SUBJECTS (≤3 pages)

This section should succinctly address all of the elements typically found in an institutional human subjects committee (or IRB) application.

Provide a letter of approval from the appropriate institutional review committee.

If this study does not require this approval, or if the application is submitted before approval is obtained, provide a letter of explanation. Notification of institutional approval must be received in the APSF office prior to any award payment being made.

K. BIOSKETCH (≤3 pages)

Applicant: Use the latest version of the current NIH biosketch template. (The template is available at https://archives.nih.gov/asites/grants/09-18-2017/grants/forms/biosketch.htm). The personal statement is an important part of the biosketch. Information provided within the biosketch personal statement is considered during grant review. The personal statement should be tailored to the specific grant application and used to convey information about the applicant’s relevant qualifications and experience related to the grant. The personal statement is most often written in the first person.

L. BUDGET (no page limit)

As a part of the PSCA grant application, the applicant must provide a detailed budget and justification of expenses.

  • Budget in total.
  • Itemized budget justification. The application should provide sufficient explanation and rationale for each budget item to fully justify the proposed expenditure.
  • Budgeting limitations. The following items can NOT be paid for from funds provided by this grant:
    • Construction, Renovations, or Furniture.
    • Capital equipment exceeding $5,000.

Additional Budget Guidelines

  • The total salary for the applicant and all salary sources must be specified in the budget.
  • Project staff salary support is allowed with appropriate justification.
  • This grant is to be used primarily for ongoing project expenses. Major equipment purchases are considered to be the responsibility of the applicant’s Department.
    The award may be used for minor equipment expenses related to the project.
  • Expenses for computers not directly justified by the project are not allowed.
  • The award may be used for supply expenses related to the project.
  • Travel support may be provided as justified for implementation and completion of the project. APSF travel reimbursement guidelines (available from the APSF administrator) will be used.


This letter must be from the Chair of the sponsoring institution’s Department of Anesthesiology. The letter must be a PDF scan of a signed original on institutional stationary. The letter must include the following elements:

  1. Departmental commitment to provide to the Applicant at least 10% time for the two-year project duration;
  2. Resource availability and commitment;
  3. Internal peer review completed;
  4. Management of awarded funds;
    1. Commitment to provide specified facilities and resources
    2. Return of unused funds to APSF/PSMF.

NOTE: No Appendices or supplemental material will be accepted.


As a part of the PSCA application, the applicant must provide a signed letter indicating acceptance of the conditions of this PSCA award. The letter must be signed by the applicant and department chair.

Please direct questions to Stacey Maxwell, APSF Administrator, [email protected].

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Submission of PSCA Application


Applications due December 31, 2019

Submit applications to Stacey Maxwell, APSF Administrator, [email protected]

Award notifications made March 6, 2020
Project start date May 1, 2020


The candidate background, research plan, cited references, and career development plan, as well as any supporting documents, should meet the following formatting specifications:

  • Single-spaced (6 lines per inch)
  • Arial or Helvetica font, size 11
    • 9 pt. font is acceptable for figures, graphs, diagrams, charts, tables, figure legends and footnotes
  • Margins of 0.5” right and left, and 1.0” top and bottom
  • Type density, including characters and spaces, must be no more than 15 characters per inch


Members of the APSF/PSMF PSCA Review Committee will evaluate the applications. Brief written critiques will be shared with all applicants.


Final Report

The PSCA recipient must submit a final report to APSF. This report is due 30 days after the completion of the award.

Elements of the final report include:

  • A report that describes accomplishments to date and the final status of the project. The report should:
    • Outline outcomes of the project and offer suggestions for next steps related to use of the PSMF patient safety curriculum, as modified for anesthesia professionals
    • Include a list of publication(s) resulting from the APSF/PSMF-funded project
  • A detailed final financial report from the institution’s Office of Sponsored Programs that summarizes all expenditures and notes any unused funds that should be returned to APSF.

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