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e-CFR data is current as of March 3, 2021

Title 38Chapter IPart 17 → Subject Group


Title 38: Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief
PART 17—MEDICAL


Grants for Exchange of Information

§17.250   Scope of the grant program.

The provisions of §17.250 through §17.266 are applicable to grants under 38 U.S.C. 8155 for programs for the exchange of medical information. The purpose of these grants is to assist medical schools, hospitals, and research centers in planning and carrying out agreements for the exchange of medical information, techniques, and information services. The grant funds may be used for the employment of personnel, the construction of facilities, the purchasing of equipment, research, training or demonstration activities when necessary to implement exchange of information agreements.

[33 FR 6011, Apr. 19, 1968. Redesignated and amended at 61 FR 21966, 21968, May 13, 1996]

§17.251   The Subcommittee on Academic Affairs.

There is established within the Special Medical Advisory Group authorized under the provisions of 38 U.S.C. 7312 a Subcommittee on Academic Affairs, and the Subcommittee shall advise the Secretary, through the Under Secretary for Health, in matters pertinent to achieving the objectives of programs for exchange of medical information. The Subcommittee shall review each application for a grant and prepare a written report setting forth recommendations as to the final action to be taken on the application.

[42 FR 54804, Oct. 11, 1977. Redesignated at 61 FR 21966, May 13, 1996, as amended at 62 FR 17072, Apr. 9, 1997]

§17.252   Ex officio member of subcommittee.

The Assistant Chief Medical Director for Academic Affairs shall be an ex officio member of the Subcommittee on Academic Affairs.

[42 FR 54804, Oct. 11, 1977. Redesignated at 61 FR 21966, May 13, 1996]

§17.253   Applicants for grants.

Applicants for grants generally will be persons authorized to represent a medical school, hospital, or research center which has in effect or has tentatively approved an agreement with the Department of Veterans Affairs to exchange medical information.

[33 FR 6011, Apr. 19, 1968. Redesignated at 61 FR 21966, May 13, 1996]

§17.254   Applications.

Each application for a grant shall be submitted to the Under Secretary for Health on such forms as shall be prescribed and shall include the following evidence, assurances, and supporting documents:

(a) To specify amount. Each application shall show the amount of the grant requested, and if the grant is to be for more than one objective, the amounts allocated to each objective (e.g., to training, demonstrations, or construction) shall be specified, and

(b) To include copy of agreement. Each application shall be accompanied by a copy of the agreement for the exchange of information or information services which the grant funds applied for will implement, and

(c) To include descriptions and plans. Each application shall include a description of the use to which the grant funds will be applied in sufficient detail to show need, purpose, and justifications, and shall be illustrated by financial and budgetary data, and

(d) To include cost participation information. Each application shall show the amount of the grant requested to be used for direct expenses by category of direct expenses, the amount requested for indirect expenses related to the direct expenses, any additional amounts which will be applied to the program or planning from other Federal agencies, and from other sources, and amounts or expenses which will be borne by the applicant, and

(e) To include assurance records will be kept. Each application shall include sufficient assurances that the applicant shall keep records which fully disclose the amount and disposition of the proceeds of the grant, the total cost of the project or undertaking in connection with which the grant is made or used, the portion of the costs supplied by non-Federal sources, and such other records as will facilitate an effective audit. All such records shall be retained by the applicant (grantee) for a period of 3 years after the submission of the final expenditure report, or if litigation, claim or audit is started before the expiration of the 3-year period, the records shall be retained until all litigation, claims or audit findings involving the records have been resolved, and

(f) To include assurance records will be made available. Each application shall include sufficient assurances the applicant will give the Secretary and the Comptroller General of the United States, or any of their authorized representatives, access to its books, documents, papers, and records which are pertinent to the grant for the purposes of audit and examination, and

(g) To include assurance progress reports will be made. Each application shall include sufficient assurances the applicant will furnish the Under Secretary for Health periodic progress reports in sufficient detail showing the status of the project, planning, program, or system funded by the grant for which application is made, and the extent to which the stated objectives will have been achieved, and

(h) To include civil rights assurances. Each application shall include sufficient assurances that no part of the grant funds will be used either by the grantee or by any contractor or subcontractor to be paid from grant funds for any purpose which is inconsistent with regulations promulgated by the Secretary (part 18 of this chapter) implementing title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, or inconsistent with Executive Order 11246 (30 FR 12319) and any implementing regulations the Secretary of Labor may promulgate.

[33 FR 6011, Apr. 19, 1968, as amended at 36 FR 320, Jan. 9, 1971; 42 FR 54804, Oct. 11, 1977. Redesignated and amended at 61 FR 21966, 21969, May 13, 1996]

§17.255   Applications for grants for programs which include construction projects.

In addition to the documents and evidence required by §17.254, any application for a grant for the construction of any facility, structure or system which is part of an exchange of information program shall include the following:

(a) Each application shall include complete descriptions, maps, and surveys of the construction site, and documentary evidence and explanations showing ownership, and

(b) Each application shall include complete plans and specifications for the construction project, and where applicable, sufficient explanations of technical applications so that they may be understood by the layman, and

(c) Each application shall contain assurance that the rates of pay for laborers and mechanics engaged in construction activities will not be less than the prevailing local wage rates for similar work as determined in accordance with the provisions of 40 U.S.C. 3141-3144, 3146, and 3147.

[33 FR 6012, Apr. 19, 1968. Redesignated and amended at 61 FR 21966, 21969, May 13, 1996; 79 FR 54616, Sept. 12, 2014]

§17.256   Amended or supplemental applications.

An amended application, or an application for a supplemental grant, may be considered either before or after final action has been taken on the original application. Amended applications and applications for supplemental grants shall be subject to the same terms, conditions and requirements necessary for original applications.

[33 FR 6012, Apr. 19, 1968. Redesignated at 61 FR 21966, May 13, 1996]

§17.257   Awards procedures.

Applications for grants for planning or implementing agreements for the exchange of medical information or information facilities shall be reviewed by the Under Secretary for Health or designee. If it is determined approval of the grant is warranted, recommendations to that effect shall be made to the Secretary in writing and shall be accompanied by the following:

(a) The recommendation for approval shall be accompanied by the written recommendation of the Subcommittee on Academic Affairs, and

(b) The recommendation for approval shall be accompanied by the written draft of the certificate of award stating all conditions which the grantee is required to agree to under the provisions of §17.258 and all other conditions to which it has been determined the grant will be subject, and

(c) The recommendation shall include a certification that sufficient appropriated funds are available, and that the application for the grant is sufficient in all details as specified in §§17.254 through 17.256.

[33 FR 6012, Apr. 19, 1968, as amended at 42 FR 54805, Oct. 11, 1977. Redesignated and amended at 61 FR 21966, 21969, May 13, 1996]

§17.258   Terms and conditions to which awards are subject.

Each certificate of award of a grant for planning or implementing an agreement for the exchange of information or information facilities shall specify that the grant is subject to the following terms and conditions:

(a) Grants subject to terms of agreement for exchange of information. Each grant shall be subject to, and the certificate shall incorporate by reference, all terms, conditions, and obligations specified in the agreement or planning protocols which the grant will implement, and

(b) Grants subject to assurances in application. Each grant shall be subject to all assurances made by the grantee in its application for the grant as required by §§17.254 through 17.256, and

(c) Grants subject to limitations on use of funds. Each grant shall be subject to the limitations on the use of grant funds, either for direct or indirect costs, as prescribed in §§17.259 through 17.261, and

(d) Grants subject to special provisions. Each grant shall be subject to any special terms or conditions which may be warranted by circumstances applicable to individual applications, and specified in the certificate of award.

[33 FR 6012, Apr. 19, 1968. Redesignated and amended at 61 FR 21966, 21969, May 13, 1996]

§17.259   Direct costs.

Direct costs to which grant funds may be applied may include in proportion to time and effort spent, but are not limited to, fees and costs directly paid to personnel or for fringe benefits, rent, publications, educational programs, training, research, demonstration activities, or construction carried out in connection with pilot programs for planning or exchange of information.

[33 FR 6012, Apr. 19, 1968. Redesignated at 61 FR 21966, May 13, 1996]

§17.260   Patient care costs to be excluded from direct costs.

Grant funds for planning or implementing agreements for the exchange of medical information shall not be available for the payment of any hospital, medical, or other costs involving the care of patients except to the extent that such costs are determined to be incident to research, training, or demonstration activities carried out in connection with an exchange of information program.

[33 FR 6012, Apr. 19, 1968. Redesignated at 61 FR 21966, May 13, 1996]

§17.261   Indirect costs.

The grantee shall allocate expenditures as between direct and indirect costs according to generally accepted accounting procedures. The amount allocated for indirect costs may be computed on a percentage basis or on the basis of a negotiated lump-sum allowance. In the method of computation used, only indirect costs shall be included which bear a reasonable relationship to the planning or program funded by the grant and shall not exceed a percentage greater than the percentage the total institutional indirect cost is of the total direct salaries and wages paid by the institution.

[33 FR 6012, Apr. 19, 1968. Redesignated at 61 FR 21966, May 13, 1996]

§17.262   Authority to approve applications discretionary.

Notwithstanding any recommendation by the Subcommittee on Academic Affairs of the Special Medical Advisory Group, or any recommendation by the Under Secretary for Health or designee, the final determination on any application for a grant rests solely with the Secretary.

[42 FR 54805, Oct. 11, 1977. Redesignated and amended at 61 FR 21966, 21969, May 13, 1996]

§17.263   Suspension and termination procedures.

Termination of a grant means the cancellation of Department of Veterans Affairs sponsorship, in whole or in part, under an agreement at any time prior to the date of completion. Suspension of a grant is an action by the Department of Veterans Affairs which temporarily suspends Department of Veterans Affairs sponsorship under the grant pending corrective action by the grantee or pending a decision to terminate the grant by the Department of Veterans Affairs.

(a) Posttermination appeal. The following procedures are applicable for reviewing postaward disputes which may arise in the administration of or carrying out of the Exchange of Medical Information Grant Program.

(1) Reviewable decisions. The Department of Veterans Affairs reserves the right to terminate any grant in whole or in part at any time before the date of completion, whenever it determines that the grantee has failed to comply with conditions of the agreement, or otherwise failed to comply with any law, regulation, assurance, term, or condition applicable to the grant.

(2) Notice. The Department of Veterans Affairs shall promptly notify the grantee in writing of the determination. The notice shall set forth the reason for the determination in sufficient detail to enable the grantee to respond, and shall inform the grantee of his or her opportunity for review by the Assistant Chief Medical Director as provided in this section.

(3) Request for appeal. A grantee with respect to whom a determination described in paragraph (a)(1) of this section has been made, and who desires review, may file with the Assistant Chief Medical Director for Academic Affairs an application for review of such determination. The grantee's application for review must be post-marked no later than 30 days after the postmarked date of notification provided pursuant to paragraph (a)(2) of this section.

(4) Contents of request. The application for review must clearly identify the question or questions in dispute, contain a full statement of the grantee's position in respect to such question or questions, and provide pertinent facts and reasons in support of his or her position. The Assistant Chief Medical Director for Academic Affairs will promptly send a copy of the grantee's application to the Department of Veterans Affairs official responsible for the determination which is to be reviewed.

(5) Effect of submission. When an application for review has been filed no action may be taken by the Department of Veterans Affairs pursuant to such determination until such application has been disposed of, except that the filing of the application shall not affect the authority which the constituent agency may have to suspend the system under a grant during proceedings under this section or otherwise to withhold or defer payments under the grant.

(6) Consideration of request. When an application for review has been filed with the Assistant Chief Medical Director for Academic Affairs, and it has been determined that the application meets the requirements stated in this paragraph, all background material of the issues shall be reviewed. If the application does not meet the requirements, the grantee shall be notified of the deficiencies.

(7) Presentation of case. If the Assistant Chief Medical Director for Academic Affairs believes there is no dispute as to material fact, the resolution of which would be materially assisted by oral testimony, both parties shall be notified of the issues to be considered, and take steps to afford both parties the opportunity for presenting their cases, at the option of the Assistant Chief Medical Director for Academic Affairs, in whole or in part in writing, or in an informal conference. Where it is concluded that oral testimony is required to resolve a dispute over a material fact, both parties shall be afforded an opportunity to present and cross-examine witnesses at a hearing.

(8) Decision. After both parties have presented their cases, the Assistant Chief Medical Director for Academic Affairs shall prepare an initial written decision which shall include findings of fact and conclusions based thereon. Copies of the decision shall be mailed promptly to each of the parties together with a notice informing them of their right to appeal the decision of the Secretary, or to the officer or employee to whom the Secretary has delegated such authority, by submitting written comments thereon within a specified reasonable time.

(9) Final decision. Upon filing comments with the Secretary, or designated officer or employee, the review of the initial decision shall be conducted on the basis of the decision, the hearing record, if any, and written comments submitted by both parties. The decision shall be final.

(10) Participation by a party. Either party may participate in person, or by counsel pursuant to the procedure set forth in this section.

(b) Termination for convenience. The Department of Veterans Affairs or the grantee may terminate a grant in whole or in part when both parties agree that the continuation of the project would not produce beneficial results commensurate with the further expenditure of funds. The two parties shall agree upon the termination conditions, including the effective date and, in the case of partial terminations, the portion to be terminated. The grantee shall not incur new obligations for the terminated portion after the effective date, and shall cancel as many outstanding obligations as possible. The Department of Veterans Affairs shall allow full credit to the grantee for the Department of Veterans Affairs share of the noncancellable obligations, properly incurred by the grantee prior to termination.

(c) Suspension procedures. When a grantee has failed to comply with the terms of the grant agreement and conditions or standards, the Department of Veterans Affairs may, on reasonable notice to the grantee, suspend the grant and withhold further payments, prohibit the grantee from incurring additional obligations of funds, pending corrective action by the grantee, or make a decision to terminate as described in paragraph (a) of this section. The Department of Veterans Affairs shall allow all necessary and proper costs that the grantee could not reasonably avoid during the period of suspension provided that they meet the provisions of the applicable Federal cost principles.

[42 FR 54805, Oct. 11, 1977. Redesignated at 61 FR 21966, May 13, 1996]

§17.264   Recoupments and releases.

In any case where the Department of Veterans Affairs or a grantee's obligations under an exchange of information agreement implemented by grant funds are terminated, or where grant-financed equipment or facilities cease to be used for the purposes for which grant support was given, or when grant-financed property is transferred, the grantee shall return the proportionate value of such equipment or facility as was financed by the grant. When it is determined the Department of Veterans Affairs equitable interest is greater that proportionate value, then a claim in such greater amount shall be asserted. If it is determined an amount less than proportionate value or less than the Department of Veterans Affairs equitable interest should be recouped, or that the Department of Veterans Affairs should execute any releases, then a proposal concerning such a settlement or releases complete with explanations and justifications shall be submitted to the Assistant Chief Medical Director for Academic Affairs for a final determination.

[42 FR 54805, Oct. 11, 1977. Redesignated at 61 FR 21966, May 13, 1996]

§17.265   Payments.

Payments of grant funds are made to grantees through a letter-of-credit, an advance by Treasury check, or a reimbursement by Treasury check, as appropriate. A letter-of-credit is an instrument certified by an authorized official of the Department of Veterans Affairs which authorizes the grantee to draw funds when needed from the Treasury, through a Federal Reserve bank and the grantee's commercial bank and shall be used by the Department of Veterans Affairs where all the following conditions exist:

(a) When there is or will be a continuing relationship between the grantee and the Department of Veterans Affairs for at least a 12-month period and the total amount of advance payments expected to be received within that period is $250,000, or more;

(b) When the grantee has established or demonstrated the willingness and ability to maintain procedures that will minimize the time elapsing between the transfer of funds and their disbursement by the grantee; and

(c) When the grantee's financial management meets the standards for fund control and accountability. An advance by Treasury check is a payment made to a grantee upon its request before outlays are made by the grantee, or through use of predetermined payment schedules and shall be used by the Department of Veterans Affairs when the grantee meets all of the above requirements of this section except that advances will be less than $250,000, or for a period less than 12 months. Reimbursement by Treasury check is a payment made to a grantee upon request for reimbursement from the grantee and shall be the preferred method when the grantee does not meet the requirements of paragraphs (b) and (c) of this section. This method may be used on any construction agreement, or if the major portion of the program is accomplished through private market financing or Federal loans, and the Federal assistance constitutes a minor portion of the program. When the reimbursement method is used, the Department of Veterans Affairs shall make payment within 30 days after receipt of the billing, unless billing is improper. Unless otherwise required by law, payments shall not be withheld for proper charges at any time during the grant period unless a grantee has failed to comply with the program objectives, award conditions, or Federal reporting requirements; or the grantee is indebted.

[42 FR 54806, Oct. 11, 1977. Redesignated at 61 FR 21966, May 13, 1996]

§17.266   Copyrights and patents.

If a grant-supported program results in copyrightable material or patentable inventions or discoveries, the United States Government shall have the right to use such publications or inventions on a royalty-free basis.

[33 FR 6013, Apr. 19, 1968. Redesignated at 61 FR 21966, May 13, 1996]

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