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Forty Projects Funded to Improve Access to Electronic Health Information for the Public

The National Library of Medicine is pleased to announce that 40 projects to improve access to electronic health information for the general public have been funded in 24 states. All projects will last up to eighteen months. Funding for the projects was provided through the National Network of Libraries of Medicine.




Verde Valley Medical Center

Cottonwood, AZ

Project Directors: Karen Fanning & Jay Fleishman


The purpose of this project is to provide access to accurate and quality consumer health information to the residents of the Verde Valley and Yavapai County through the Internet. MEDLINE, PubMed, MedlinePlus, NIH SeniorHealth, and Household Products Database will be the primary databases used for accessing consumer health information. The target groups and partners in the project are the public library system, medical and mental health car providers, and organizations that provide health services to the uninsured, under-insured, working poor and migrant populations of the Verde Valley. It is anticipated that this project will provide free accurate and quality consumer health information, including easy-to-read material, Spanish and possibly other language materials and interactive tutorials to the Verde Valley and the communities located in Yavapai County.




Fort Smith Public Library

Fort Smith, AR

Project Director: Jennifer Goodson


The purpose of this project is to combine teaching and training expertise with cutting edge technology to bring health information and health information seeking skills to consumers, health professionals, and library staff members in the greater Fort Smith, Arkansas community. The project establishes a new partnership between the Fort Smith Public Library and St. Edward Mercy Medical Center. The project involves teaching health care consumers, health professionals, and library staff members how to search the Internet for reliable and authoritative health information and demonstrating and teaching the use of NLM electronic health information products including MedlinePlus,, ToxTown, and PubMed, among others. In most cases, training will be done at one of four Fort Smith Public Library locations utilizing a mobile computer lab created by the combination of a wireless high speed Internet network and 15 wireless-enabled notebook computers.




Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM)

San Diego, CA

Project Director: Naomi C. Broering


The purpose of this project is to develop a senior health program for the senior community in two San Diego Senior Centers, the First Lutheran Church’s Senior Center and the Florence Riford Senior Center in La Jolla, in partnership with the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM). The project will implement a health information access network relationship with these partners, to provide computer training workshops for local senior citizens, to add pertinent NLM and other resources to the PCOM website for use by seniors, to provide instruction to full text databases and extend Document Delivery services and Loansome Doc to the project partners. The collaboration is designed to bridge the information gap for seniors in San Diego where NLM resources can help the growing senior community.


Periodic Paralysis Association (PPA), Judy Tuttle Memorial Research Library

Monrovia, CA

Project Director: Patrick E. Cochran


The Periodic Paralysis Association (PPA) maintains a close relationship with each of the leading institutions having a focused interest in the Periodic Paralysis or Non-dystrophic Myontonias collection of disorders. Due to the rare nature of this class of disorder few healthcare workers have had an opportunity to gain familiarity with the clinical presentation of the known variants. The PPA is committed to developing, housing and managing an on-line video library to enhance the diagnostic knowledge base for this class of disorder. This project will enable the PPA to develop a web-based video library, modeling a spectrum of the unique symptoms associated with these disorders.




Gulfcoast AHEC, University of South Florida & All Children’s Hospital

Land O’Lakes, FL

Project Director: Henry L. Shapiro


In an effort to increase access and awareness of consumer level child health information the Gulfcoast North Area Health Education Center (AHEC) and its partners the University of South Florida AHEC Program, and All Children’s Hospital will expand and support the Florida School Nurse Project (FSNP). Included in the expansion will be training and access via the FSNP website already in existence to online health information on the Internet, particularly the NLM databases and resources. The primary focus of the project is to educate and provide consumer health information on children to school nurses and other related professionals.


Orange County Library System

Orlando, FL

Project Directors: Debbie Moss & Marilyn Hoffman


The purpose of this project is to develop learning modules in 10 topic areas: Prenatal care, Diabetes, Senior Wellness, Heart Disease Prevention and Care, Nutrition, Exercise and General Wellness, Healthy Kids (obesity), Alzheimer’s, Low Vision, Hearing Loss and Menopause. To accomplish the goals of the project, web meetings, online courses, in person classroom style training and television programming will be used. Outreach activities will be directed to the users of the 13 Neighborhood Centers for Families in Orange County where last year 31,000 families were served.




Medical Center of Central Georgia & Three Rivers AHEC

Macon & Columbia, GA

Project Directors: Lorraine M. Simoneau & Mary Fielder


The Medical Center of Central Georgia in conjunction with Three Rivers Area Health Education Center will extend their already extensive community health outreach efforts to address the problem of low health literacy. The plan is to upgrade the Health Resource Center Library Website to provide a more accessible and comprehensive collection of patient education information (including MedlinePlus, PubMed, clinical trials, etc.); educate area consumers, health care professionals and public library staff in a six county area on the use of these resources, and develop a CME/CE program on Health Literacy.



Northwestern University, Galter Health Sciences Library

Chicago, IL

Project Director: Linda Walton


This project will establish a model for developing community partnerships to inform and educate consumers and librarians on patient safety awareness. Involved in the project will be collaboration with a consumer safety organization and a group of public libraries from five communities in Northern Illinois, including a Chicago Public Library. Public libraries will be paired with health care institutions. Using the train-the-trainer model health sciences librarians will provide MedlinePlus. A website, marketing materials and a tool kit will be developed.


Norwegian American Hospital Foundation

Chicago, IL

Project Director: Herbert L. Slutsky


The Norwegian American Hospital Foundation (NAH) recognizes that an informed patient is an empowered patient, that an empowered patient becomes an active agent in their own health care. The NAH will create a family resource center in two multi-cultural diverse Chicago neighborhoods at a community hospital to meet the community’s health care needs. The resource centers are where ambulatory patients, their family members, and other residents of Humboldt Park and West Town communities can come to find a wide-range of health care information. NAH will collaborate with the Wright City College Humboldt Park Vocational Center’s practical nurses students to staff the resource center on a part time basis.


University of Illinois at Chicago

Peoria, IL

Project Director: Josephine L. Dorsch


The goal of this project is to improve Illinois public health nurses’ access to evidence based information for public health nursing and increase their knowledge and skills to evaluate the information. Project staff will develop a web site with links to instructional and evidence-based resource materials, offer a series of instructional modules to enhance skills in finding and evaluating literature, develop a database to disseminate literature reviews conducted by public health nursing graduate students to a wide audience of public health nurses, and facilitate access to information by offering the reference and document delivery through the health sciences library to public health nurses unaffiliated with a health sciences library.




Johnson County Library

Shawnee Mission, KS

Project Director: Tim Rogers


In collaboration with the partners of, Johnson County Library will improve access to electronic health information by developing a searchable public database of community health resources. The database will be accessible from the Web site and will enhance access to MedlinePlus through integrated links. Once developed, the library will provide free access to the database source code and project documentation to enable other libraries to enhance access to electronic health information in their communities. The primary target audiences include the residents of Johnson County and the health-related service personnel who serve the county’s residents.




Wicomico County Free Library

Salisbury, MD

Project Director: Rosemary Truitt


The Wicomico County Free Library together with the Peninsula Regional Medical Center and the Wicomico County Health Department will enhance access to electronic health information by seniors in the county by developing a Life Options Community. The 23,000 seniors in the community will be offered an area in the library where they can attend instructional classes on electronic health information, use the resources on their own and have continuing access to the technology, staff assistance, and peer support in a familiar and comfortable environment. In order to reach seniors who lack transportation to the library, Life Options Community classes and times will be scheduled at library and senior sites throughout the county.




Holyoke Consumer Health Library Inc.

Holyoke, MA

Project Director: Sandra N. Ward


Holyoke Consumer Health Library, Inc. will support and enhance access to reliable health information in coordination with six Community Partners (Holyoke Public Library, Holyoke Health Center, Mercy Women’s Health Center, Girls Incorporated of Holyoke, and the Holyoke Council on Aging. The vision of the project is to create a network of consumer health access stations at health and human service agencies in Holyoke, MA. A Consumer Health Information Coordinator will train staff at site to use NLM consumer health databases and will work with agency staff to plan and conduct outreach to their clients, including low-income Spanish speaking consumers, women seeking health care, pregnant and parenting teenagers, families raising vegetables in community gardens, teens at the Holyoke Teen Center, elders at the Senior Center, and the general public.


JSI Center for Environmental Health Studies

Boston, MA

Project Director: Terry A. Greene


Informed Communities: Environmental Health Initiative will assist residents of Dorchester, MA to access, understand, and apply environmental health information. Partners include the Dorchester branch libraries of the Boston Public Library system and the Dorchester Environmental Health Coalition. The project will train environmental and community advocates, health professionals, librarians, and public health workers by showing them how to access environmental health information via the Internet, how to evaluate available information critically and how to disseminate information to community members. The long term goal of the project is to create a cadre of environmental health resources leaders available in the neighborhood of Dorchester.


University of Massachusetts Medical School, Lamar Soutter Library

Worcester, MA

Project Director: Elaine R. Martin


The University of Massachusetts (UMass) Medical School Lamar Soutter Library, in collaboration with the UMass Medical School Department of Psychiatry and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Department of Mental Health, will develop the e-Mental Health in Central Massachusetts. “e-mental health” refers to mental health services and information delivered or enhanced through the Internet to improve access to evidence-based information and decision making for professionals and consumers. The purpose of e-Mental Health in Central Massachusetts is to provide an integrative information web-based resource, training, reference and document delivery services. This program will target an underserved population and will build on the success of a recently completed NLM funded project to teach parents and pediatric agency staff to find and assess the quality of health information on the Internet. The target population is mental health agencies, mental health care providers and consumers of mental health information.




Munson Healthcare, Department of Library Services

Traverse City, MI

Project Director: Barbara Platts


The goal of this project is to provide Munson Medical Center with the resources needed for furnishing quality consumer health information to patients and community members in the Munson Healthcare service area. Information access will be provided through kiosk workstations placed in three locations within the hospital’s public space. Through scheduled hands-on computer training classes community members will learn how to access information to make informed decisions about lifestyle and treatment options and improve their overall health.




Mississippi Valley State University

Itta Bena, MS

Project Director: Annie Peyton


The Mississippi Valley State University’s James Herbert White Library, in partnership with Golden Age, Inc. (GAI) and the Boys and Girls Club of the Mississippi Delta (MVSU Unit), will establish a program to train youth and senior adults in locating and using electronic health information, including the National Library of Medicine databases and resources. The goal of the program is to promote and give access to reliable electronic health resources to seniors and youth in the underserved rural community of Leflore County, Mississippi in the heart of the Mississippi Delta.




Voices of Hope & Montana Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence

Great Falls, MT

Project Director: Susie McIntyre


Voices of Hope and the Montana Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence will collaborate to improve access to mental health and crisis information in Montana for mental health providers and sexual and domestic violence service providers across the state. The project will expand the Voices of Hope Crisis Resource Center and the Montana Resource Center to disseminate accurate, up-to-date mental health and crisis information and provide training to improve the information research skills of mental health providers and sexual and domestic violence service providers in Montana.


New Jersey


Atlantic Health System, Mountainside Hospital Health Sciences Library

Montclair, NJ

Project Directors: Pat Regenberg & Jeff Levine


The goal of this consumer health information project is to create a “medical library without walls,” enabling patients to receive information relative to their care or condition either prior to hospital admission, during or following admission. Local public libraries will be enlisted to help promote this service and to partner with the medical libraries in an effort to provide community outreach.


Meridian Health

Montclair, NJ

Project Directors: Catherine Boss, Joanne Papanicolau, Susan Pistolakis

The Meridian’s Electronic Health Information Project (eHIP) will be established as a system-wide collaborative effort to serve as a catalyst for improved public awareness of authoritative healthcare websites. Through this project, Meridian will provide a self-sustaining resource for the community to obtain current, reliable electronic healthcare information and introduce the growing senior population to quality websites and to tailor a training program to meet their distinctive needs.


New York


The New York Academy of Medicine

New York, NY

Project Director: Janie Kaplan


The project will provide convenient and supported access to health information for patients and staff of Settlement Health, a federally qualified primary care center in East Harlem, one of the poorest communities in New York City. The New York Academy of Medicine (NYAM) will partner with the New York Public Library (NYPL) and Settlement Health in designing, implementing, and providing services in the Settlement Health Consumer Health Information Centerthat will be located at Settlement Health. Columbia University's Department of Biomedical Informatics and the Center for Evidence-Based Practice in the Underserved of Columbia University's School of Nursing will participate in the project as formative and summative evaluators. The overall goal of the project is to provide health information to patients, their families, clinical staff, and community members in East Harlem.


Stony Brook University Health Center Library

Stony Brook, NY

Project Director: T. Guillaume Van Moorsel


The collaboration between Stony Brook University Health Sciences Center Library (HSCL) and the Suffolk Cooperative Library System (SCLS) will foster a population of information-literate healthcare consumers and improve public accessibility, awareness and use of authoritative electronic health information resources needed to make informed healthcare decisions. Coupled with traveling promotional exhibits as well as print- and Web-based information guides and self-paced tutorials, training will be complemented by public presentations delivered by community health professionals addressing various health issues as well as health services and resource available to the public.


North Carolina


Northwest AHEC Library Network (LINK)

Winston-Salem, NC

Project Director: Michael P. Lischke


School nurses are an often neglected group of health professionals in regards to serving their current information needs. Connectivity and knowledge in use of electronic sources of current information is the focus of this project. School nurses in Rowan and Forsyth counties in North Carolina are the target audience. It is anticipated that with the provision of training and computers, the nurses will be able to locate information for students and faculty quickly and efficiently.


Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Coy C. Carpenter Library

Winston-Salem, NC

Project Director: David C. Stewart, et al.


The Forsyth County Public Library, the Coy C. Carpenter Library at Wake Forest University School of Medicine, and the Family Resource Center of Brenner Children’s Hospital will develop a working relationship that focuses on improving consumer access to pediatric electronic health information. The primary goal of this project is to increase accessibility and understanding of pediatric health information for children and families who are receiving health care at Brenner Children’s Hospital and publicize the presence of Forsyth County Public Library as a source for consumer health information in the region. Family Resource Center (FRC) volunteers and hospital staff from Brenner Children’s Hospital will be trained to access and evaluate electronic health information, as well as create a database of pediatric health resources.


North Dakota


Healthy Roads Media, Family HealthCare Center

Fargo, North Dakota

Project Director: Mary Alice Gillispie


The Virginia Department of Health Division of Tuberculosis Control has produced a set of multilingual health education materials that cover seven critical issues in dealing with tuberculosis. The Healthy Roads Media and the Virginia Department of Health Division of TB Control will partner to continue the development, dissemination and evaluation work of the multilingual multimedia resources. The goal of this project is to reformat materials on tuberculosis into a variety of types of media.




Cherokee Nation Health Services Group

Tahlequah, OK

Project Director: Sohail Khan


The Cherokee Nation has long recognized the value of health information and its impact on health outcomes. Patients should be well-informed, participate in decisions and communicate openly with their health care professionals. In an effort to provide patients with needed health care information the Cherokee Health Information Network (C.H.I.N.) will be developed. CHIN, consisting of a web site and work stations linked to the Internet at each community center in surrounding Cherokee communities, will give electronic access to quality health information including NLM resources.




Oregon Pacific AHEC

Corvallis, OR

Project Director: Karen Bondley


The Oregon Pacific Area Health Education Center (AHEC) will enhance consumer use of on-line medical educational resources in northwest rural Oregon by using Internet technology. This Internet promotion project has two components. The first is a program to promote MedlinePlus, Profiles in Science, and Images from the History of Medicine to minority high school students enrolled in health career programs with particular focus on the Multi-Cultural Youth for Health Careers Program, a collaborative project with Oregon Health & Science University. Anticipated number of students to be served is estimated to be 150. An additional 250 students will be reached through participation in high school career fairs. The second component is a consumer outreach program using local media and participating in multi-cultural community health fairs to disseminate medical Internet resource information.


Tuality Health Information Resource Center

Hillsboro, OR

Project Directors: Judith Hayes


The members of the Oregon Health Sciences Libraries Association (OHSLA) propose to hold a series of “Health Reference Triage” classes in the state of Oregon and Vancouver, WA, to reach public librarians in their home areas. The purpose is two-fold: 1) to expand the knowledge and ability of public librarians to deliver health information to the public, and 2) to foster connections between clinical and consumer health science libraries and public libraries. Classes will be held in local public, academic, or health sciences libraries, hands-on when possible. The syllabus and web links will be available on-line through the Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) website.




AIDS Library and Project TEACH

Philadelphia, PA

Project Director: Jenny Pierce


This project will be conducted by Philadelphia FIGHT, a comprehensive AIDS service organization to improve the health outcomes of people with HIV/AIDS. The project represents a partnership between Philadelphia AIDS Library and Project TEACH (Treatment Education Activists Combating HIV). New modules will be created for the TEACH interactive media series. These modules will reinforce Project TEACH classroom work thus providing people infected with HIV/AIDS with critical health information.


Duquesne University, Gumberg Library

Pittsburgh, PA

Project Director: Robert J. Campbell


Duquesne University’s Gumberg Library, Rangos School of Health Sciences, and School of Nursing will collaborate with Pittsburgh area community, governmental, and faith-based organizations to educate seniors and enable them to use the Internet to locate and evaluate information needed to effectively manage their healthcare and wellness. Participants will have access to a project Web site containing a wide array of high quality healthcare information resources provided by the National Library of Medicine and other reputable sources. Another goal of the project will be to increase seniors’ ability to use information to develop an increased participation in their healthcare. Additionally the partners plan to build the seniors’ self-confidence and understanding in order to foster a community of health literate lifelong learners capable of researching and understanding new issues in managing their health.


Geisinger Health System

Danville, PA

Project Directors: Valerie A. Gross, etal.


The “Access to Electronic Health Information: Senior Access to Trusted Sources” goal is to increase access to quality health information to the community of senior persons, via the use of Internet resources. This project will build an educational partnership to meet patients’ needs, enhance health literacy of patients and families, and improve senior persons’ ability to partner with caregivers in improving stroke outcome in the community and to increase access to quality health information to the community of senior persons, via the use of Internet resources. Seniors will be provided with information on the identification of cerebrovascular disorder (stroke) symptoms, how to respond to those symptoms and examples of how they can interact with their health care providers. A blended education initiative will be created to deliver the program’s course, “Stroke Internet Resources – Recognize, React, Recover.”


The Williamsport Hospital & Medical Center

Williamsport, PA

Project Director: Michael Heyd


The purpose of the project is to develop an electronic library linking two healthcare networks in rural North Central Pennsylvania, Susquehanna Health System and the Susquehanna Valley Rural Health Partnership, to improve access to information for healthcare professionals in this underserved region through electronic delivery, training, and support. The goal of the project is to improve the quality of care to all patients, including underserved and high-risk populations, by giving isolated physicians and other health care providers with better tools, quicker access to information, and prompt electronic document delivery.


South Carolina

Medical University of South Carolina

Charleston, SC

Project Director: Barbara A. Carlson


The purpose of the REACH 2010 Faith-in-Health Library Initiative is to activate a partnership of urban/rural, inter-denominational African American churches, multi-type libraries, community organizations, and diabetes coalitions. The project will develop a health information seeking skills-building program designed to train church volunteers in learning how to find quality and reliable diabetes Internet and library resources, train others, and disseminate the health information in the community.



East Tennessee State University, Quillen College of Medicine Medical Library

Johnson City, TN

Project Director: Richard L. Wallace


East Tennessee State University will extend consumer health information training to public library personnel in the 17 counties of Northeast Tennessee and county and regional public health workers within the Northeast Tennessee Regional Health System. Reference services will also be provided to the Northeast county and regional health workers. Public librarians will be encouraged to participate in MLA’s Consumer Health Information Specialization Program, continue and expand the HealthInfo Express@Your Library service, and promote National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NN/LM) membership among participating institutions.


St. Thomas Hospital

Nashville, TN

Project Director: Jan Haley


St. Thomas Hospital’s Community Health Information Partners (CHIP’s) project seeks to connect rural and specialized libraries with hospital libraries to expand the level of health information available to consumers in Middle Tennessee. The primary purpose of this project is to link each participating library to a web-based catalogue searchable by the public in an effort to create greater efficiency in the distribution of health information. The principle outcome of the project is to create a more informed healthcare consumer ultimately resulting in better health outcomes and reduced healthcare costs to our community.


University of Tennessee Health Center, College of Pharmacy

Memphis, Tennessee

Project Director: Naseem Amarshi


The purpose of this outreach initiative is to ensure that health professionals, their patients and the general public are connected to the health information resources they need by using PDAs. It is hoped that this will enable healthcare professionals to make informed health care decisions, and the public to become informed and assume responsibility for their personal healthcare. The University of Tennessee’s Library and the Drug Information Center in the College of Pharmacy will train health care professionals, patients and students and their parents in the Memphis area to access a variety of reputable health information resources.




The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio Libraries

San Antonio, TX

Project Director: Mary Moore


The goal of this project is to increase the use of quality health information by the citizens of South Texas communities. This would be accomplished by training high school students to use the health information resources of the National Library of Medicine. The students would then teach others. The project will also provide others with useful tools so they could set up similar projects. An additional outcome will be providing information to high school students about health librarianship as a career choice.




Utah AIDS Foundation

Salt Lake City, UT

Project Director: Stan Penfold


Individuals living with HIV/AIDS in Utah report that their top three barriers to “health education services,” including access to electronic health information, are “transportation,” “cost,” and “not knowing” where to find such services. The Utah AIDS Foundation (UAF) seeks to address this situation by installing four internet “Health Kiosks” in locations where individuals living with HIV/AIDS already congregate to receive HIV-related services (two HIV-specific medical clinics and one homeless day center). Health Kiosks will default to UAF’s HIV Resource Library website, which was developed with NLM funding, in partnership with the Regional Medical Library at the Spencer Eccles Health Sciences Library at the University of Utah. The HIV Resource Library website contains an extensive collection of electronic HIV-specific health related information, with particular emphasis on NLM-developed information resources including MedlinePlus and, as well as links to local HIV-specific services, information, and resources, like the state’s AIDS Drug Assistance Program and local Ryan White Title II and III providers. This project also seeks to implement an aggressive training program for users of the Health Kiosks.




African Americans Reach and Teach Health Ministry (AARTH)


Project Director: Mary Diggs-Hobson


This project will expand upon the Access to Wellness Network Project developed under previous NLM funding. Expansion activities will focus on providing access to culturally relevant and user-friendly NN/LM health information and building the capacity of six new churches and Muslin based organizations/mosques to increase awareness within African American/African congregations and faith-based organizations in King, Pierce, Snohomish and Thurston counties. Project partners include AARTH, Mars Hill Graduate School, CLEARCorps Pacific Northwest, one Seattle high school, six new churches and Muslin based organizations in Western Washington. Computer support, Internet training, web site development, and health information search/retrieval training will be important parts of the project. As a result, churches and Muslim based organizations/mosques will increase their technology capacity and skills to access and provide health and wellness resources.


Sno-Isle Regional Library & Whidbey Island Hospital Foundation

Marysville & Coupeville, WA

Project Directors: Chari McRill & Alexandria Louden


The Electronic Access for Reliable Health and Medical Information Project will provide the residents of Island County, Washington, electronic access to credible health information and community resources through a partnership between Sno-Isle Libraries, a regional public library system, and Whidbey General Hospital. It is the intent of this project to connect patients, their families, health care professionals, and the general public with the resources needed to answer their health questions in a timely, reliable and confidential manner. The two Medical Resources sites at Whidbey General Hospital will be linked directly with the Library District’s reference librarian and health related databases. Training in locating and understanding consumer health information will be offered to health care professionals, Sno-Isle library staff and senior centers and support groups sponsored by Whidbey General Hospital.