Dear current grant holders,

We hope this finds you well and safe during these unprecedented times.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, every organization is transforming their day-to-day activities. This is no exception for the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (Royal College) and the Research Unit. Firstly, we are committed to the health and wellness of Canadians, and we are continually monitoring the effects of COVID-19 on our residents, Fellows, staff and you as members of the medical education research community.

We are writing to provide you an important update on changes that may be impacting Royal College research grants, including potential delays to your research project and final report submissions. The work that you do is extremely important and we understand that this funding is vital to advancing your research and in some cases, supporting your research staff.

We are here to support you during these trying times

Please know that we are here to support you. We recognize that the COVID-19 pandemic may affect your ability to conduct and to complete your research under the timelines originally specified. We also understand that some research may need to slow down or stop and that the preparation of reports will be delayed in the process.

If you are facing any challenges, we will work with you to the best of our ability to accommodate your needs. The Research Unit staff and the Education Research Grants Committee are hard at work to develop and implement measures to not only ensure grant monies can flow for the most recent grant competition, however also to support recipients who may be challenged by sudden changes in work flow and commitments.

Policy changes under consideration

One of the measures that we are exploring is making amendments to our grant extension policy (currently 1-time) to support you as a result of recent COVID-19 developments, such as:

  • Option to request a second grant extension without penalty, including final reports; and
  • Option to allow those impacted by COVID-19 the ability to apply for another research grant with an open grant (with accommodation).

At the present time, the adjudication of current grant proposals remains scheduled for July 2020. However, please note that COVID-19 is a fluid situation that may impact this timeline. We will keep you informed of any changes.

Keep us informed

Please keep us informed of your current situation. Regular communication is critically important for us to assess your needs and implement the measurements noted above. We have already heard and spoken to many of you directly, and we are working to assist you and answer any questions you might have.

Please reach out to us at researchgrants@royalcollege.ca.

Be well and stay safe.

Sincerely,

Tanya Horsley, PhD, MA
Associate Director, Research Unit
Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada