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Committee Detail



Committee NameNational Research Advisory CouncilAgency NameDepartment of Veterans Affairs
Fiscal Year2019Committee Number5293
Original Establishment Date9/21/1999Committee StatusChartered
Actual Termination Date Committee URL 
New Committee This FYNoPresidential Appointments*No
Terminated This FYNoMax Number of Members*12
Current Charter Date5/14/2019Designated Fed Officer Position Title*Management and Program Analyst
Date Of Renewal Charter5/14/2021Designated Federal Officer Prefix
Projected Termination Date Designated Federal Officer First Name*Avery
Exempt From Renewal*NoDesignated Federal Officer Middle NameAnn
Specific Termination AuthorityDesignated Federal Officer Last Name*Rock
Establishment Authority*Agency AuthorityDesignated Federal Officer Suffix
Specific Establishment Authority*38 USC 7303Designated Federal Officer Phone*(202) 461-9760
Effective Date Of Authority*9/21/1999Designated Federal Officer Fax*(202) 632-7721
Exempt From EO 13875 Discretionary CmteNot ApplicableDesignated Federal Officer Email*
Committee Type*Continuing
Committee Function*Scientific Technical Program Advisory Board


Agency Recommendation*Continue
Legislation to Terminate RequiredNo
Legislation StatusNot Applicable
How does cmte accomplish its purpose?*The Office of Research and Development (ORD)convenes periodic meetings of the Council to provide external consultation and review for VA’s research mission. The Council provides advice and makes recommendations to the Chief Research and Development Officer, the Under Secretary for Health and the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, concerning the nature and scope of Research and Development activities, particularly those that support priority areas. NRAC best aligns with implementing the mission act [improving Veterans access to health care]. They review the research program and how it is aligned with promoting a learning organization that improves processes to provide better access to health care and medical solutions to problems experienced by Veterans. The NRAC provides feedback to ORD, the USH, and the Secretary about the strategic position of the R&D program and ways to improve the work performed by the R&D program.

Since this Council is a policy and not a review board, it does not consider specific research proposals, although studies that support priority, The Council periodically forwards letters to the Secretary of Veterans Affairs expressing concern about specific research issues. As advisory to the Secretary and Under Secretary for Health, the Council conducts an annual assessment of the VA ORD's Research Program as part of the performance assessment Rating Tool process. This assessment is based upon guidelines related to the scientific importance of the research on Veterans' health, and its impact on the public health of the general population. The Council considers the appropriateness of the research to the VA healthcare mission, the balance of this research in terms of the burden of disease and the special responsibilities of VA in the areas of mental health, Suicide, PTSD, TBI, substance use, homelessness, pain and opioid use, spinal cord injury, prosthetics and high-risk populations, care of aging Veteran including caregiving, LTC, genomic medicine, Big data and MVP, access, care coordination and patient centered care and deployment related conditions including Gulf War.
How is membership balanced?*In 2018, seven new members were appointed. The Council includes knowledgeable VA- and non-VA experts, and Veterans’ community representatives with special qualifications and competence to deal effectively with medical research and development issues in VA. The Council consists of outside physicians, scientists, academic and other leaders as well as a Veteran thereby assuring that important perspective on the health problems of Veterans. Close attention was given to equitable geographic distribution and to ethnic and gender representation. Membership provides a balance of views and a range of expertise essential to attaining the stated goals of the Council. The membership of the Council provides a unique opportunity for VA to highlight the strengths and quality of its research program to a distinguished national group who can further advance VA's research program.
How frequent & relevant are cmte mtgs?*Meetings are generally held once every quarter: March, June, September and December. The Annual Report to the NRAC is presented to the NRAC by Research and Development staff at the December meeting. Comments include updates from the prior year regarding research, awards, accomplishments, and other information.
Why advice can't be obtained elsewhere?*The experts on the NRAC provide advice and most importantly, use their broad knowledge bases to inform and discuss relevant research issues.
Why close or partially close meetings?All meetings were open in FY18.
Recommendation RemarksFor estimated figures for 2018, the cost for non-federal travel increased due to a site visit in the field at the Atlanta VA Medical Center. Six of twelve members reside in the DC Metro area, and we usually do not pay flight and hotel costs. This site visit also requires federal staff to travel to Atlanta, which increases the estimated figure over last year’s $0.


Outcome Improvement To Health Or Safety*YesAction Reorganize Priorities*No
Outcome Trust In GovernmentYesAction Reallocate ResourcesYes
Outcome Major Policy ChangesYesAction Issued New RegulationsNo
Outcome Advance In Scientific ResearchYesAction Proposed LegislationYes
Outcome Effective Grant MakingNoAction Approved Grants Or Other PaymentsNo
Outcome Improved Service DeliveryYesAction OtherNo
Outcome Increased Customer SatisfactionYesAction CommentThe financial resources saved by ending the hard copy printing of the Journal of Rehabilitation Research were reallocated to new grant funding within the Office of Research and Development.
Outcome Implement Laws/Reg RequirementsYesGrants Review*No
Outcome OtherNoNumber Of Grants Reviewed0
Outcome CommentThe result of medical research to include Health Services Research and Development, Clinical Sciences Research and Development, Biomedical Laboratory Research and Development and Rehabilitation Research and Development programs may have outcomes that impact the VA and it's customers/patients.Number Of Grants Recommended0
Cost Savings*Unable to DetermineDollar Value Of Grants Recommended$0.00
Cost Savings CommentThe cost savings are unable to be determined as the research the Council reviews may or may not have outcomes for VA and it's customers/patients.Grants Review CommentN/A
Number Of Recommendations* Access Contact Designated Fed. Officer*Yes
Number Of Recommendations Comment2018
No new recommendations.
Access Agency WebsiteYes
% of Recs Fully Implemented*29.00%Access Committee WebsiteNo
% of Recs Fully Implemented CommentThis recommendation was completed in FY16: The Journal of Rehabilitation Research and Development is down sizing and will end it's run in 2016.Recommendation1: ORD planning to submit a legislative proposal for 2020 to address VA’s critical shortage of adequate wet-lab research space by removing the “pre-commitment restriction” currently in place that prohibits VA facilities from entering into agreements to secure research space with research partners at the construction phase.Recommendation 3 - VA has made the job announcements for the three additional TTSs and the database manager and is currently in the hiring selection process. The VA estimates the new TTSs and the new database manager will be hired by the end of Fiscal Year 2018 (FY18).
New TTS personnel have been hired.
Access GSA FACA WebsiteYes
% of Recs Partially Implemented*0.00%Access PublicationsNo
% of Recs Partially Implemented CommentNo recommendations are being implemented at this time.Access OtherNo
Agency Feedback*YesAccess CommentN/A
Agency Feedback CommentThe Office of Management and Budget requires that the NRAC conduct an annual assessment of the VA research program, which is based on guidelines related to the scientific importance of research on Veterans' health, and its impact on the public health of the general population. The NRAC considers the appropriateness of the research to VA's healthcare mission and makes observations about the research in the areas of mental health, traumatic brain injury, and deployment health. The NRAC provides an efficient mechanism to keep key national research opinion leaders aware of VA's work. The state of VA research is graded by the Council and provided to the SECVA in an annual letter.Recommendation 1: VA Response: Concur in principle. VA recognizes the importance of collaborating with research partners to better advance the health care of Veterans. VA will explore options to ensure VA access to more advanced equipment and facilities and furthering the ability to enhance academic and industry collaborations for innovative research while reducing overall costs. Recommendation 2: VA Response: Non-Concur. VA recognizes the importance of aligning program offices responsible for key statutory missions at the highest levels of the Veterans Health Administration (VHA). The Secretary is steadfast in his support of VA’s research mission and clinical education mission. VA is currently implementing an extensive modernization plan of the VHA Central Office. The Office of Research and Development will be prominently realigned to assure agency support of the research mission.Recommendation 3: VA Response: Concur. VA understands the need to hire five additional Technology Transfer Specialists (TTS) in order to improve technology transfer services across the Department to maximize the technology being transferred/licensed to the private sector in order to provide better products and services to Veterans and the American Public and bolster revenue into VA in order to fund additional research. VA is currently processing the job announcement to hire three additional TTS and a database manager by the end of 2018. VA will reevaluate staffing needs after the four additional employees have been in place for 6 months.Narrative Description*The NRAC reviews the Strategic Plan and the Top 5 Priorities (Greater Choice, Modernize Systems, Efficiency, Improve Timeliness, and Suicide Prevention) for VA annually. The result of medical research to include Health Services Research and Development, Clinical Sciences Research and Development, Biomedical Laboratory Research and Development and Rehabilitation Research and Development programs may have outcomes that impact the VA and it's customers/patients. A device or treatment that improves health care or increases timeliness will increase trust in the government and customer satisfaction. A new process may result in increased trust, policy changes, service delivery,customer satisfaction or implementation of a new law.
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Payments to Non-Federal Members* Est Payments to Non-Fed Members Next FY* 
Payments to Federal Members* Est. Payments to Fed Members Next FY* 
Payments to Federal Staff* Estimated Payments to Federal Staff* 
Payments to Consultants* Est. Payments to Consultants Next FY* 
Travel Reimb. For Non-Federal Members* Est Travel Reimb Non-Fed Members nextFY* 
Travel Reimb. For Federal Members* Est Travel Reimb For Fed Members* 
Travel Reimb. For Federal Staff* Est. Travel Reimb to Fed Staff Next FY* 
Travel Reimb. For Consultants* Est Travel Reimb to Consultants Next FY* 
Other Costs Est. Other Costs Next FY* 
Total Costs$0.00Est. Total Next FY*$0.00
Federal Staff Support (FTE)* Est. Fed Staff Support Next FY* 
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Data from Previous Years

ActionCommittee System IDCommittee NameFiscal Year
 COM-001846National Research Advisory Council2017
 COM-002176National Research Advisory Council2016
 COM-003381National Research Advisory Council2015
 COM-004571National Research Advisory Council2014
 COM-006104National Research Advisory Council2013
 COM-006700National Research Advisory Council2012
 COM-007597National Research Advisory Council2011
 COM-009450National Research Advisory Council2010
 COM-010369National Research Advisory Council2009
 COM-011374National Research Advisory Council2008
 COM-011542National Research Advisory Council2007
 COM-012589National Research Advisory Council2006
 COM-013404National Research Advisory Council2005
 COM-014385National Research Advisory Council2004
 COM-015332National Research Advisory Council2003
 COM-017091National Research Advisory Council2002
 COM-017302National Research Advisory Council2001
 COM-019043National Research Advisory Council2000
 COM-019257National Research Advisory Council1999
 COM-033593National Research Advisory Council2018