Request for Proposal: Optimizing NTD diagnostics and sampling strategies for low-prevalence settings

Request for Proposal: Optimizing NTD diagnostics and sampling strategies for low-prevalence settings


Scope of this RFP

This RFP covers two topic areas:

1. New or improved diagnostic markers/tools/technologies

Innovative approaches to improve existing diagnostic tools or develop new tools with very high specificity to support programmatic decision making based on population-based surveys. It may be possible to achieve high specificity through modification of the biomarker, of the test platform or by basing a positive test on the presence of a combination of biomarkers for a single infection.

2. Application of new epidemiological or statistical methods to maximize the effectiveness of survey sampling strategies to detect specific LF and oncho signal in low-prevalence settings  

It may be possible to get away from the need for extremely high specificity requirements by employing innovative sampling strategies that are better able to detect very low true prevalence signal. Such methods have been suggested, but have not been systematically evaluated in programmatic setting. Proposals on implementation of new epidemiological strategies can be based on existing diagnostic tools.   

Proposals can address technologies or epidemiological methods used previously in the global health context or new products or methods which have never been tested before. Proposals must align with the needs and contexts outlined by the DTAG TPPs and landscape summaries.


Review process overview

Proposals in line with the scope of this RFP will be reviewed by a panel of objective reviewers from the NTD Support Center, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, USAID, World Health Organization and other partner organizations based on how well they address these criteria:


  • Technical merit: Proposals must be technically sound, well written, with clear objectives and contextual evidence justifying the proposed research.
  • Alignment with programmatic needs: Proposals must align with the needs identified in the TPPs and use case documents
  • Scalability and Potential for impact: Proposed research must have the potential to improve community-based surveys to support decision making as described by the use case documents.
  • Proposals should make consideration for how the research/innovations have potential for impact at scale.
  • Proposals should outline plans for knowledge dissemination and next steps
  • Proposals must demonstrate that the proposed tools or methods have use beyond the scope of the RFP
  • Sustainability: Proposed research should lead to new tools or methods that can realistically be made available to national NTD programs with or without external funding


Projected costs

  • Proposals must be in line with maximum funding available per project ($500,000).
  • Proposals focused on development or improvement of diagnostic tools must take into account the cost requirements outlined by the TPPs
  • Proposals focused on epidemiological methods/survey strategies must demonstrate that new methods are in line with existing methods
  • All proposals must demonstrate value for money and follow the budget guidance provided


Award information 

Maximum duration: 12 months

Maximum total funding available for all projects:

            Biomarkers/tools/products: $2,500,000

            Epidemiological methods: $500,000

Maximum funding available per project: $500,000

How to apply

Submission instructions:

All proposals must be submitted using the following web form:

Submissions should include the following documents:

  • Study protocol
  • Study budget (Budgets using any template will be accepted as long as they follow these budget requirements. The NTDSC budget template can also be used)
  • Budget narrative for proposals over $300,000
  • Project timeline
  • Relevant supporting documents (additional background information, references, theory of change/conceptual framework, documentation of national per diem rates, etc)


Submissions must be received by January 31, 2021 at11:59 PM EST in order to be considered.

For questions concerning this RFP, please contact Ashley Souza (asouza [at]