Preparing for a Foreign Organization System (FOS) Review

Foreign Organization System (FOS) Review is the NIAID Division of Extramural Activities risk mitigation program for NIAID grants and contracts that include foreign entities. The program reviews the administrative and financial systems used to manage and oversee NIAID-sponsored research grants and contracts. FOS Review is part of the Institute's efforts to do the following:

  • Assist foreign organizations’ researchers and research administrators to better understand and comply with NIAID/NIH funding policies. 
  • Provide recommendations, based on the FOS Review findings, that foreign organizations may consider in their efforts to build capacity to properly manage and oversee NIAID/NIH funds.

The NIAID Contractor for International Activities (NIAID Contractor) conducts FOS Review and will visit the foreign sites of foreign grantees, foreign subcomponents of U.S. grantees, and occasionally foreign contractors to review the administrative and financial systems. The review is guided by the NIAID FOS Review Assessment Tool which covers basic grants management and administrative functions based on the NIH Grants Policy Statement requirements and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services regulations.

What to Expect During a FOS Review

Before the Site Visit

  • NIAID staff will contact the grantee—principal director/investigator (PD/PI) and authorized organizational representative (AOR)—if a FOS Review site visit is planned for the foreign site.
  • In the initial contact, NIAID will provide the grantee with the FOS Review Assessment Tool. The grantee will
    • Review the FOS Review Assessment Tool and as needed, email or call the NIAID international program specialist for additional information and/or clarification.
    • Complete the FOS Review Assessment Tool before the NIAID Contactor arrives and, as needed, ask NIAID Contractor for guidance in completing the assessment. Inform NIAID Contractor promptly if unable to complete the document before the site visit.
      Note: Completing the FOS Review Assessment Tool in advance of the site visit helps the process move faster during the visit.
    • Submit the completed FOS Review Assessment Tool to the NIAID Contractor before or during the site visit.
  • Grantee will ensure that the appropriate financial staff at the foreign site have access to the relevant documents in advance of the site visit and are available to participate in the FOS Review.
  • Grantee will work directly with NIAID Contractor or provide contact information for the most appropriate contact person at the foreign site to schedule and finalize travel plans for the site visit.

During the Site Visit

A team that includes NIAID Contractor team lead, Contractor's assistant, and NIAID grants representative will visit the foreign site to conduct the review. The team will review and discuss with the grantee's team the FOS Review Assessment Tool and other related documents. See the sample agenda for the site visit.

  • Grantee will provide NIAID Contractor with access to the relevant administrative staff and records.
  • At the end of the site visit, grantee will receive a copy of the preliminary FOS Review report and the attendees will have an opportunity to review and discuss the report with the NIAID Contractor onsite.

After the Site Visit

  • NIAID staff will send the grantee an official final FOS Review report. Grantee will carefully review the report and respond as directed. 

    Note: Grantee must address or provide a plan to address the compliance issues within 60 calendar days of receiving the final FOS Review report from NIAID.

FOS Review Assessment Tool 

(Choose your language and format.)

MS Word format Adobe Acrobat format Last Updated
English English August 2020
Chinese Chinese August 2020
French French August 2020
Spanish Spanish August 2020


Grantees with questions or concerns about the FOS Review should contact NIAID’s international program specialist at

Grantees or contractors with questions about compliance issues should contact the grants/contract management specialist designated on their Notice of Award or contract. For more information, see the GMP Management staff list.

If you have knowledge to share or want more information on this topic, email with the title of this page or its URL and your question or comment.


Foreign Grants Management

International Applications

Content last reviewed on