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VA/Nonprofit Corporation/Affiliate Collaboration Toolkit

The information contained on this website is for general information purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice on any matter. VA Medical Centers (VAMCs) and affiliated Nonprofit Corporations (NPCs) should contact VA's Office of General Counsel (OGC), Specialty Team Advising Research (STAR) for legal advice. Under no circumstances shall VA have any liability for any loss or damage of any kind incurred as a result of the use of this site or reliance on any information provided on this website. The content provided on this website does not serve as VA endorsing any product, template, service, or enterprise. No party or entity may state or imply that the Government or any of its organizational units or employees endorses any product, service, or enterprise.

The information contained on this website does not alter, amend, or supersede VA policy.  Official VA policy is published in Directives or Handbooks that can be found here

Background Information (In Chronological Order)

  1. Westat: Study on Veterans Affairs (VA) Extramural Funding
  2. National Association of Veterans’ Research and Education Foundations (NAVREF) Response to Westat: Study on Veterans Affairs (VA) Extramural Funding
  3. Association of American Medical Centers (AAMC) Response to Westat: Study on Veterans Affairs Extramural Funding
  4. Government Accountability Office Report (released July 29, 2020): Opportunities Exist to Strengthen Partnerships and Guide Decision-Making with Nonprofits and Academic Affiliates  
  5. NRAC Subcommittee Charter

Products of the NRAC-Subcommittee: White Paper and Decision Matrix

  1. Enhancing VA Research Relationships: VA’s Recommendations and Response to GAO

  2. Proposed Decision Matrix for Affiliate or NPC sponsored research administration for determining where extramural funding will be administered, i.e., VA NPC or Affiliate.

Agreement Templates and Guidance

  1. Sample NPC & Academic Affiliate Agreement for the Administration of Extramural Funding
  2. Intergovernmental Personnel Agreement (IPA) Guidance
  3. a. Office of the Chief Human Capital Officer (OCHCO) - Directive/Handbook 5005 - Staffing, Part I, Chapter 3, Section C (pages I-29 to I-33) NOTE: VA network access is required to access this link.

    b. Guidance Manual for Administrative Officers and ACOS/Research (updated June 2023)

  4. Sample Joint Personnel Agreements (JPAs)
  5. JPAs are between a University and Nonprofit Corporation; however, JPAs may contain contractual terms that affect VA. VA’s Office of General Counsel must review clauses that affect VA. Such clauses would include, but are not limited to, intellectual property and liability clauses. Nonprofit Corporations must be mindful of payment restrictions imposed by federal ethics laws and regulations. Sample templates are to come. Please contact STAR if a site is interested in establishing a Research Affiliate or JPA agreement.

  6. Guidance on Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs)
  7. a. Time & Effort MOU Guidance

    b. Guidance Manual for Administrative Officers and ACOS/Research (released June 2022, updated June 23, Section 15 (pages 107-109)

Guidance on Subcontracts/Subawards

1. Subcontract/Subaward models for various types of grants

VA’s Office of General Counsel strongly recommends Nonprofit Corporations work with the Specialty Team Advising Research before entering Subaward/Subcontract Agreements. The Federal Demonstration Partnership (FDP) Templates listed below contain language that is revised by STAR during its legal review. STAR’s proposed edits are dependent on the specifics of the study to be conducted. However, several common issues identified during a legal review of FDP Templates include: 1) adding the respective VA Medical Center or VA Health Care System as a contractual party to the Agreement; 2) adding appropriate statutory authority and VA policy under which the VA Medical Centers and Non-Profit Corporations are allowed to enter into the Agreement; 3) revising liability language; 4) addressing the financial reimbursement to VA for the cost of treating injuries sustained by study subjects while participating in the study; 4) revising contractual termination provisions; 5) adding conflict of interest provisions applicable to VA employees; 6) revising language addressing the use of a party’s name; 7) revising provisions related to Intellectual Property ownership; 8) revising study data ownership and use provisions; 9) addressing use of biological specimens; 10) adding provisions applicable to studies involving human subjects; 11) ensuring the statement of work adequately discusses the work to be performed by the parties. 

The Federal Demonstration Partnership (FDP) Subaward Templates, Samples, Tools, and Resources This includes:

i. Cost Reimbursable Template
ii. Fixed Amount Template
iii. Bilateral Subaward Amendment Template
iv. Unilateral Subaward Amendment Template
v. Foreign Subaward Sample Cost Reimbursable
vi. Subcontract Sample
vii. Subcontract Amendment Template
viii. Fixed-Rate Clinical Research Subaward Sample - NIH

VA’s National Partners in Building Affiliate Relationships

  1. National Association of Veterans’ Research and Education Foundations (NAVREF)
  2. Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC)

Questions about the R&D website? Email the Web Team

Any health information on this website is strictly for informational purposes and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any condition.