Revised NIH Parental Leave Policy for NRSA Recipients


All trainees and fellows supported by Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awards (NRSAs) are now able to continue receiving stipends while taking parental leave. Stipends can be provided for up to 60 calendar days (or 8 work weeks) of parental leave per year for the adoption or the birth of each child.

Previously, the NRSA program could not provide stipends to NRSA-supported individuals unless those in comparable training positions at their institution also had access to this level of paid parental leave. While this requirement is now removed, the NRSA trainee or fellow is required to provide advance notice to their grantee institution and their supervisor according to their institution’s policy.

For more information, read the recent NIH Guide notice announcing this policy change. More information on family-friendly initiatives can be found on the website.


  1. Great change, NIH. I had 2 children while on a pre-doctoral NRSA fellowship and could have benefitted from this (and believe I commented on it in my NRSA evals). I am now a mom of 3 with a new NIH award and preparing for promotion. Although not easy, it is possible to have a family and a successful career in science. Thanks for helping make it a little less stressful for new parents during those hard years of training.

  2. Majority of Postdoc in USA are foreign national as well. Some are single, some have not able to visit their home for decades. This NRSA supporting mom is appreciating. It should be also extended to man who wants to go their home country and get married for driving family. Any NIH based grant should give 1-month compulsory paid vaccation who has reason like above for humananitarian reason.

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