Rural Emergency Medical Communications Demonstration Project


The 97.120 CFDA was used in FY 2016 for the newly authorized Rural Emergency Medical Communications Demonstration Project (REMCDP) and again in FY 2018, 2020, 2022, and 2023 to reestablish the grant. The grant opportunity leverages emergency communications infrastructure, improves operational effectiveness, addresses National Emergency Communications Plan (NECP) implementation gaps, and provides communications training and education to enable improved rural medical services. The Presidential Policy Directive8 emphasizes national preparedness as a shared responsibility of the whole community, requiring greater involvement across multiple jurisdictions and disciplines. REMCDP aids in meeting that goal by working with up to two public and state-controlled institutions of higher education, states, U.S. territories, local governments (e.g. county, city, or township), or Federally-recognized Tribal governments in collaboration with a medical facility to examine communications barriers and identify solutions that enhance existing emergency communications infrastructure to improve the delivery of rural medical care and address NECP implementation gaps.

General information about this opportunity
Last Known Status
Program Number
Federal Agency/Office
Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, Department of Homeland Security
Type(s) of Assistance Offered
B - Project Grants
Program Accomplishments
Fiscal Year 2016 By the end of Fiscal Year 2016, all BIDP grantees will have completed their grant activities and closed out their grant. An award for the Rural Medical Emergency Communications Demonstration Project will be made. The grant recipient, University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC), began developing the First Hands Project, a training program designed to use medical education along with communications education and exercises to empower first providers giving medical care in rural communities. Accomplishments included: Began the search to hire staff such as the program manager and field support specialists, started outreach and engagement with public safety groups throughout the state regarding the First Hands training program, designed and developed First Hands Training program content and objectives, procured six vehicles to be located at Mississippi Center for Emergency Services’ operational bases to support First Hands training travel across the state, and evaluated options and solutions for capturing and evaluating participant feedback on the First Hands training program, as well as baseline comparison data on current emergency communications practices.
Fiscal Year 2017 The FY 2016 REMCDP grant continues to be executed. As required, REMCDP reporting requiremnts continue to be submitted each quarter. The program continues to
Fiscal Year 2018 A new award was made.
Fiscal Year 2019 The FY 2018 REMCDP grant eriod of performance started October 1, 2018. Grant activities for the REMCDP were reported and reviewed each quarter consistent with the established program objectives. The First Hands Program trained 6,088 participants total in 333 courses, between January, 2017 and December 31, 2019. Also, the grant recipient hosted 13 First Hands refresher courses for two federal law enforcement agencies.
Fiscal Year 2020 The FY 2018 REMCDP grant period of performance continues, and the grant was closed out March 31, 2021. Additionally, a new award was made on September 30, 2020.
Fiscal Year 2021 Grant activities for FY 2020 REMCDP reporting requirements continue to be submitted each quarter. The program reviews the grant activities that support emergency responders and medical practitioners so they can communicate in rural, underserved communities. The University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC) reported on its First Hands and First Voice Programs, including the successful implementation of the online First Voice course to reach the intended telecommunicator audience in a safe manner. UMMC also reported progress toward identifying a new platform for its Mississippi Center for Emergency Services (MCES) mobile smartphone application and acquiring production equipment to create additional content for the application. UMMC submitted a budget modification, and no-cost extension through February 28, 2023, to meet the backlog of training requests that accumulated through the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown in 2020 and early 2021. DHS approved this request in January 2022.
Fiscal Year 2022 Fiscal Year 2022: The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) published the FY 2022 REMCDP Notice of Funding Opportunity on June 1, 2022. The extended application period closed on July 29, 2022, and CISA completed a merit-based review process and awarded $1,892,500 in September 2022 to the University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC). UMMC submits quarterly financial and performance reports and communicates regularly with CISA. In addition, CISA conducted a site visit at UMMC facilities in Jackson, MS, on December 2, 2022, including discussion of programmatic monitoring, inventory of equipment purchased with REMDCP funds (e.g., radio cache, radio asset distribution vehicles, training supplies, audio/visual production, bleeding control kits), and review of FY 2022 award plans and panel feedback. As a continuation from previous awards, UMMC offered the online First Voice course and conducted in-person First Hands courses for first responders across Mississippi. UMMC completed updates to the MCES mobile smartphone application functionality and usability, as well as added content (e.g., medical videos, podcasts, “Tell Your Story” feature). UMMC plans to create a second “Enhanced First Hands” course and introduce the Virtual Patient Interactive Trainer augmented reality system from North American Rescue to supplement current training materials. UMMC is also reviewing its social media strategy, embarking on a push-to-talk over cellular demonstration, and acquiring a ruggedized vehicle to serve as an ambulance for first responders, as well as a communications center in tactical or disaster settings. Lastly, CISA launched a new technical assistance program entitled the Rural Emergency Communications Operational Rapid Assistance Package (O-RAP) to implement REMCDP successes in rural communities across the nation. O-RAP objectives are to identify immediate needs associated with emergency communications for rural medical care; provide tools such as plans, policies, and procedures to quickly address identified needs; train jurisdictions and communities on using the provided tools; and apply and test those tools via tabletop or functional exercises. To date, CISA has engaged with 19 rural communities and tribes to conduct O-RAP and tailor REMCDP lessons learned to their unique areas, including customization to regional land mobile radio systems and talk-groups. In addition, CISA is planning to expand training to incorporate REMCDP innovative solutions, life-saving techniques (e.g., CPR, tourniquet application), and medical communications procedures to first responders and telecommunicators in rural areas.
Fiscal Year 2023 Fiscal Year 2023: Congress authorized another round of REMCDP funding. CISA developed the FY 2023 REMCDP Notice of Funding Opportunity with modifications from previous years to expand the applicant pool (i.e., adding state, local, tribal, and territorial governments in collaboration with a medical facility) and award as cooperative agreements (i.e., distinguishing CISA’s substantial involvement with recipients to develop innovative solutions and technical assistance offerings for other rural communities). A total of $4M will be made available for up to two recipients. The period of performance will be two years. Other program requirements remain similar to previous REMCDP awards (e.g., no cost share or pass-through). The announcement is anticipated for mid-2023. The FY 2020 REMCDP award closed on April 30, 2023, following DHS approval of a no-cost extension request by the recipient. CISA will develop a closeout report following the submission of final financial and performance reports in mid-2023. Work on the FY 2022 REMCDP award will continue during its two-year period of performance. CISA will also continue O-RAP technical assistance with partnered communities.
Fiscal Year 2024 Fiscal Year 2024: CISA does not anticipate additional funding for REMCDP in FY 2024. The FY 2022 REMCDP award will closeout on September 29, 2024. The FY 2023 REMCDP award will continue its two-year period of performance into 2025.
Public Law -117-328
Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2023 (Pub. L. No. 117-328), Division F, Title III, Protection, Preparedness, Response, and Recovery; Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency. The Joint Explanatory Statement accompanying legislation set forth the following: “First Responder Emergency Medical Communications.-The agreement provides $64,000,000 above the request - $2,000,000 above the fiscal year 2022 level - for CISA to administer and expand competitive grants for SLTT merit-based demonstration projects and technical assistance offerings that aid in the implementation of the National Emergency Communications Plan through innovative approaches to interoperable emergency medical communications in rural areas to enhance public safety communications.” Authorizing authority for the program: Section 102(b)(2) and Title XVIII of the Homeland Security Act of 2002, as amended (Pub. L. No. 107-296); (6 U.S.C. § 112(b)(2); 6.U.S.C. § 571 et seq.)
Who is eligible to apply/benefit from this assistance?
Applicant Eligibility
Refer to Program Guidance for further information.
Beneficiary Eligibility
Refer to program guidance for further information.
Refer to program guidance for further information.
What is the process for applying and being award this assistance?
Pre-Application Procedure
Preapplication coordination is required. An environmental impact statement is required for this listing. This program is eligible for coverage under E.O. 12372, "Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs." An applicant should consult the office or official designated as the single point of contact in his or her State for more information on the process the State requires to be followed in applying for assistance, if the State has selected the program for review. Refer to program guidance.
Application Procedure
2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards applies to this program. Application deadline and other information are contained in the application/program guidance.
Award Procedure
The REMCDP review process will involve two review phases. First, all applications will be reviewed to confirm eligibility and completeness. Then, a panel of subject matter experts knowledgeable in areas such as emergency communications systems, interoperable communications, public safety operations, emergency operations and grants management will review the applications and determine a merit score. The merit review panel will be composed of Federal employees with experience on emergency communications and interoperability. The merit score will be based on the degree to which an application addresses the Application Evaluation Criteria listed in the program guidance.
Contact the headquarters or regional location, as appropriate for application deadlines
Approval/Disapproval Decision Time
The FY 2023 REMCDP application period is anticipated to be open for 60 days in mid-2023; exact dates are pending the NOFO release. CISA will evaluate eligible applications and award recipients by September 30, 2023.
Refer to program guidance for further information.
Refer to program guidance for further information.
How are proposals selected?
Refer to program guidance.
How may assistance be used?
The improvement of medical communication systems and existing infrastructures, and of rural communities’ ability to access medical services.
What are the requirements after being awarded this opportunity?
Performance Reports: Refer to program guidance.
These audits are due to the cognizant Federal agency, submitted through the Federal Audit Clearinghouse, not later than 9 months after the end of the grantees fiscal year.
Grant and cooperative agreement records shall be retained for a period of 3 years from the day the recipient submits its final expenditure report. If any litigation, claim, negotiation, audit, or other action involving the records has been started before the expiration of the 3-year period, the records must be retained until completion of the action and resolution of all issues that arise from it, or until the end of the regular 3-year period, whichever is later. Grant and cooperative agreement records include financial and program/progress reports, support documents, statistical records, and other documents that support the activity and/or expenditure of the recipient or sub-recipient under the award.
Other Assistance Considerations
Formula and Matching Requirements
Statutory formula is not applicable to this assistance listing.

Matching requirements are not applicable to this assistance listing.

MOE requirements are not applicable to this assistance listing.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
Refer to program guidance. Awards are subject to the Cash Management Improvement Act for payment and/or reimbursement of expenditures. Method of awarding/releasing assistance: Payment based on project need. Payment based on project need.
Who do I contact about this opportunity?
Regional or Local Office
None/Not specified.
Headquarters Office
Cyber Security and Information Security Agency
4200 Wilson Blvd.
Arlington, VA 22201 US
Phone: (703) 235-4025
Website Address
Financial Information
Account Identification
(Project Grants) FY 22$4,000,000.00; FY 23 est $6,000,000.00; FY 24 est $0.00; FY 21$0.00; -
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
Refer to program guidance. Program was not appropriated in FY21
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
2 CFR Parts 200 and 225
Examples of Funded Projects
Not applicable.


Federal Grants Resources