Solicitation for Nominations for Members of the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF)

 
CONTENT
Federal Register, Volume 85 Issue 4 (Tuesday, January 7, 2020)
[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 4 (Tuesday, January 7, 2020)]
[Notices]
[Pages 711-712]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-00019]
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DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
Solicitation for Nominations for Members of the U.S. Preventive
Services Task Force (USPSTF)
AGENCY: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), HHS.
ACTION: Solicits nominations for new members of the USPSTF.
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SUMMARY: The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) invites
nominations of individuals qualified to serve as members of the U.S.
Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF).
DATES: Nominations must be received in writing or electronically by
March 15th of a given year to be considered for appointment to begin in
January of the following year.
ADDRESSES: Submit your responses either electronically or in writing
to: https://uspstfnominations.ahrq.gov/register, Lydia Hill, ATTN:
USPSTF Nominations, Center for Evidence and Practice Improvement,
Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, 5600 Fishers Lane,
Mailstop: 06E53A, Rockville, Maryland 20857.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:  Lydia Hill at [email protected].
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:
Arrangement for Public Inspection
    Nominations and applications are kept on file at the Center for
Evidence and Practice Improvement, AHRQ, and are available for review
during business hours. AHRQ does not reply to individual nominations,
but considers all nominations in selecting members. Information
regarded as private and personal, such as a nominee's social security
number, home and email addresses, home telephone and fax numbers, or
names of family members will not be disclosed to the public in accord
with the Freedom of Information Act. 5 U.S.C. 552(b)(6); 45 CFR
5.31(f).
Nomination Submissions
    Nominations must be submitted electronically or in writing, and
should include:
    1. The applicant's current curriculum vitae and contact
information, including mailing address, and email address; and
    2. A letter explaining how this individual meets the qualification
requirements and how he or she would contribute to the USPSTF. The
letter should also attest to the nominee's willingness to serve as a
member of the USPSTF.
    AHRQ will later ask people under serious consideration for USPSTF
membership to provide detailed information that will permit evaluation
of possible significant conflicts of interest. Such information will
concern matters such as financial holdings, consultancies, non-
financial scientific interests, and research grants or contracts.
    To obtain a diversity of perspectives, AHRQ particularly encourages
nominations of women, members of minority populations, and persons with
disabilities. Interested individuals can nominate themselves.
Organizations and individuals may nominate one or more people qualified
for membership on the USPSTF at any time. Individuals nominated prior
to May 15, 2019, who continue to have interest in serving on the USPSTF
should be re-nominated.
Qualification Requirements
    To qualify for the USPSTF and support its mission, an applicant or
nominee should, at a minimum, demonstrate knowledge, expertise and
national leadership in the following areas:
    1. The critical evaluation of research published in peer-reviewed
literature and in the methods of evidence review;
    2. Clinical prevention, health promotion and primary health care;
and
    3. Implementation of evidence-based recommendations in clinical
practice including at the clinician-patient level, practice level, and
health-system level.
    Additionally, the Task Force benefits from members with expertise
in the following areas:
[ssquf] Public Health
[ssquf] Health Equity and The Reduction Of Health Disparities
[ssquf] Application of Science to Health Policy
[ssquf] Dissemination and Implementation
[ssquf] Behavioral Medicine/Clinical Health Psychology
[ssquf] Communication of Scientific Findings to Multiple Audiences
Including Health Care Professionals, Policy Makers and the General
Public
    Candidates with experience and skills in any of these areas should
highlight them in their nomination materials.
    Applicants must have no substantial conflicts of interest, whether
financial, professional, or intellectual, that would impair the
scientific integrity of the work of the USPSTF and must be willing to
complete regular conflict of interest disclosures.
    Applicants must have the ability to work collaboratively with a
team of diverse professionals who support the mission of the USPSTF.
Applicants must have adequate time to contribute substantively to the
work products of the USPSTF.
Nominee Selection
    Nominated individuals will be selected for the USPSTF on the basis
of how well they meet the required qualifications and the current
expertise needs of the USPSTF. It is anticipated that new members will
be invited to serve on the USPSTF beginning in January, 2021. All
nominated individuals will be considered; however, strongest
consideration will be given to individuals with demonstrated training
and expertise in the areas of Family Medicine, Internal Medicine,
Pediatrics, and Obstetrics and Gynecology. AHRQ will retain and may
consider for future vacancies nominations received this year and not
selected during this cycle.
    Some USPSTF members without primary health care clinical experience
may be selected based on their expertise in methodological issues such
as meta-analysis, analytic modeling or clinical epidemiology. For
individuals with clinical expertise in primary health care, additional
qualifications in methodology would enhance their candidacy.
Background
    Under Title IX of the Public Health Service Act, AHRQ is charged
with
[[Page 712]]
enhancing the quality, appropriateness, and effectiveness of health
care services and access to such services. 42 U.S.C. 299(b). AHRQ
accomplishes these goals through scientific research and promotion of
improvements in clinical practice, including clinical prevention of
diseases and other health conditions. See 42 U.S.C. 299(b).
    The USPSTF, an independent body of experts in prevention and
evidence-based medicine, works to improve the health of all Americans
by making evidence-based recommendations about the effectiveness of
clinical preventive services and health promotion. The recommendations
made by the USPSTF address clinical preventive services for adults and
children, and include screening tests, counseling services, and
preventive medications.
    The USPSTF was first established in 1984 under the auspices of the
U.S. Public Health Service. Currently, the USPSTF is convened by the
Director of AHRQ, and AHRQ provides ongoing scientific, administrative,
and dissemination support for the USPSTF's operation. USPSTF members
serve four year terms. New members are selected each year to replace
those members who are completing their appointments.
    The USPSTF is charged with rigorously evaluating the effectiveness,
appropriateness and cost-effectiveness of clinical preventive services
and formulating or updating recommendations regarding the appropriate
provision of preventive services. See 42 U.S.C. 299b-4(a)(1). Current
USPSTF recommendations and associated evidence reviews are available on
the internet (www.uspreventiveservicestaskforce.org).
    USPSTF members currently meet three times a year for two days in
the Washington, DC area. A significant portion of the USPSTF's work
occurs between meetings during conference calls and via email
discussions. Member duties include prioritizing topics, designing
research plans, reviewing and commenting on systematic evidence reviews
of evidence, discussing and making recommendations on preventive
services, reviewing stakeholder comments, drafting final recommendation
documents, and participating in workgroups on specific topics and
methods. Members can expect to receive frequent emails, can expect to
participate in multiple conference calls each month, and can expect to
have periodic interaction with stakeholders. AHRQ estimates that
members devote approximately 200 hours a year outside of in-person
meetings to their USPSTF duties. The members are all volunteers and do
not receive any compensation beyond support for travel to in person
meetings.
    Dated: January 2, 2020.
Virginia L. Mackay-Smith,
Associate Director.
[FR Doc. 2020-00019 Filed 1-6-20; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4160-90-P