NIH GUIDE, Volume 21, Number 29, August 14, 1992

PA NUMBER:  PA-92-100

P.T. 34


  Information Science/Systems 

National Library of Medicine


The National Library of Medicine (NLM) wishes to provide planning and

implementation grants to health science institutions that seek

assistance in integrating their existing scattered databases and

information systems into a comprehensive networked institutional

information management system capable of serving clinical, research,

educational, and administrative needs.

The Integrated Advanced Information Management Systems (IAIMS) program

described in this Program Announcement (PA) is a substantially revised

version of the NLMs existing IAIMS program, first announced in 1982.


The Public Health Service (PHS) is committed to achieving the health

promotion and disease prevention objectives of "Healthy People 2000,"

a PHS-led national activity for setting priority areas.  This PA,

Integrated Advanced Information Management Systems, is related to the

priority area of surveillance and data systems.  Potential applicants

may obtain a copy of "Healthy People 2000" (Full Report: Stock No.

017-001-00474-0 or Summary Report:  Stock No. 017-001-00473-1) through

the Superintendent of Documents, Government Printing Office,

Washington, DC 20402-9325 (telephone 202-783-3238).


Applicants may be hospitals and medical centers, academic health

science centers, and other appropriate health science organizations.

Institutions that have received funding for Phase III "old" IAIMS

projects may apply for other grant programs of the NLM, but are not

eligible for "new" IAIMS support.  All others, including those that

have applied for IAIMS funding in the past, may apply to the revised



The mechanism of support for this PA is the medical library resource

grant (G08).  This grant mechanism only funds direct costs.



In 1983 the NLM initiated an award program to provide "assistance to

medical centers and health science institutions for planning and

development projects leading to the implementation of Integrated

Academic Information Management Systems (IAIMS)."  The program

announcement went on to say, "IAIMS are institution-wide computer

networks that link and relate library systems with individual and

institutional databases and information files, within and external to

the institution, for patient care, research, education, and

administration.  The goal is to create an organizational mechanism

within health institutions to more effectively manage the knowledge of

medicine, and to provide for a system of comprehensive information


During the next decade over seventy institutions applied for IAIMS

grants in one or another of the 3 defined phases, and through FY 1991

26 awards had been made to 16 institutions.  The importance of

information management today is as great as ever, but the program

elements as originally defined by NLM deserve re-evaluation.  Lessons

have been learned from a decade of experience; furthermore, the climate

has changed significantly as a number of institutions made extensive

investments in information systems in recent years; most importantly,

the advent of the High Performance Computing and Communications

Initiative (HPCC) has dramatically enriched the possibilities of

information transfer, while increasing the complexity of information


The NLM is the lead biomedical organization in the federal Government's

HPCC initiative.  The HPCC program recognizes "that unprecedented

computational power and its creative use are needed to investigate and

understand a wide range of scientific and engineering `grand challenge'

problems."  (1) Some of the problems identified are of obvious interest

to biomedicine:  National Research and Education Network (NREN),

biotechnology, transmission of digital images, intelligent gateways to

retrieve information from several life sciences databases, and

innovations in educational techniques, among others.

Accordingly, NLM is revising its IAIMS program with:

o  A name change:  replacing "academic" with "advanced" recognizes the

wide applicability of the IAIMS concept and the need to incorporate new


o  Fusion of the old phases II and III (model and implementation) into

one operational phase

o  Changes in the level of support

o  Some modification of the scope and conditions of the grant

o  Incorporation of HPCC into the NLM vision of an integrated

information management system.

The Integrated Advanced Information Management Systems (IAIMS) Program

The revised IAIMS program has two phases:  A planning phase, and an

operational phase.

1.  IAIMS Planning Phase

"New" IAIMS planning phase resembles Phase I of the "old" IAIMS.

Various models can be used in information systems planning, but all

applications should include some form of self-study and allow for

certain key elements:

o  A description of the institution's information management resources,

current and five-year projection;

o  Development of an institutional information policy that addresses

both short-term and long-term goals;

o  Identification of leadership for planning;

o  Broad involvement of clinical and basic science faculty,

administration, and students;

o  Specification of desired strategic outcomes;

o  An outline of the planning process, including goals and timetables;


o  A comprehensive view that considers information needs of patient

care, research, education, and administration.

The outcome of planning activities is the development of an

institutional Information Management Plan, which should include

information resources management policies, an analysis of functions and

responsibilities of major information database managers, and a

description of how IAIMS will be developed, organized, and managed.

A total separation between planning and operations is not mandated;

institutions vary widely in the information system already in place at

the time of application.  An institution may, if it wishes, use or

introduce some operational elements during this planning period (for

example, an E-mail system.)

The IAIMS planning grant may be for up to $150,000 per year for one to

two years.  The grant supports direct costs only; funds are not

provided for indirect or overhead costs.

2.  IAIMS Operational Phase

Health science institutions that complete the IAIMS planning phase

successfully (or can demonstrate a comparably sophisticated information

management plan based on their own planning efforts) may apply to NLM

for an IAIMS operational phase grant to assist them in implementing the

plan.  Plans will vary for different institutions, but certain key

elements are of interest to all:

A.  Essential

o  A plan for developing the institution's information management

resources, and the requisite networks;

o  A functional Information Management Policy;

o  Designation of leadership with appropriate background and status;

o  A plan for supporting IAIMS after termination of the grant;

o  Timetables for reaching key features of the operational plan;

o  Reasonable timetables for major plan features such as development of

the network, organization of the management structure, appointment of

the leadership, and post-grant financing plans.  The ability of funded

institutions to reach such milestones in a timely manner will be

evaluated by the NLM when deciding annually on continuance of funding;

o  The ability to provide efficiently bibliographic and related

literature pertinent to health care delivery and research.  Significant

participation by the health sciences library is essential; and

o  Substantial incorporation of one or more elements of HPCC/NREN into

the institution's information system.  Connection to Internet, for

example, is one such element; other examples include collaboration

through high speed networks, distance learning, addressing of

computationally intensive problems in molecular biology in a

distributed environment, visualization techniques, and network-based

digital imaging.

B.  Highly Recommended

o  A clear relationship to clinical aspects of the health sciences,

such as linkage with a computerized patient record, a hospital

information system, clinical alert information/distribution systems,

clinically relevant expert systems, and/or systems for monitoring

quality of care and cost-control; and

o  Incorporation of current NLM objectives such as, connection to

national networks, direct access to Medline and/or extensive use of

Grateful Med, outreach components which improve information access for

health care workers in underserved rural or inner city locations, and

in other health care sites affiliated with the applicant.

C.  Optional

o  An apprenticeship in IAIMS may be incorporated into the operational

plan at the discretion of the applicant, through a position entitled

IAIMS Assistant.  An educational program should be described, outlining

the credentials of the candidates, the goals and duration of the

apprenticeship, the structure of the learning experience, and other

relevant material.  Personnel, travel and supply costs may be requested

up to a total of $50,000 for each year of the operational phase.  Costs

for apprentices should be budgeted in accordance with standard

institutional policy.

Other Information About the Operational Grant

The operational phase grant application may include an initial period

of model development at the discretion of the institution, but a

distinct interim period of model-building is not required.

Operational phase grants may be for up to $500,000 per year for five

years, or for up to $550,000 per year for five years if support for the

apprenticeship program is included.  Only direct costs are supported.

NLM support for IAIMS at an institution will terminate at the end of

the five-year operational phase, and is not renewable.

The word "institution" as used in this program description implies that

IAIMS will involve all major organizational components of the

institution to the extent feasible.  The NLM realizes that large

differences among medical centers are inevitable, and that at some

sites, certain suborganizations may not be suitable for incorporation

into the initial IAIMS plan.  However, a plan that is restricted to a

relatively small fraction of the institution has misunderstood the

point of the program, and will not be favorably reviewed.


Applicants are to use the PHS 398 (rev.9/91) application form, that

includes forms, instructions and additional information, available at

most academic medical centers,  the Extramural Programs office, NLM, at

the address listed under INQUIRIES, and from the Office of Grants

Inquiries, Division of Research Grants, National Institutes of Health,

Westwood Building, Room 449, Bethesda, MD 20892, telephone 301/

496-7441.  Applications must be received by the standard NIH deadlines,

October 1, February 1, and June 1.  Late submissions will be held over

for the subsequent review cycle.  The title and number of this

announcement must be typed in item 2a on the face page of the


The completed original application and five legible copies must be sent

or delivered to:

Division of Research Grants

National Institutes of Health

Westwood Building, Room 2450

Bethesda, MD  20892**


Applications will be assigned on the basis of established PHS referral

guidelines.  Applications will be reviewed for scientific and technical

merit by the NLM Biomedical Library Review Committee, in accordance

with the standard NIH peer review procedures.  Following

scientific-technical review, the application will receive a

second-level review by the NLM Board of Regents.

Critical Review Elements

For Planning Phase:

o  Responsiveness to the program description and guidelines;

o  Institutional environment;

o  Extent of involvement by key leadership; and

o  Short and long-term goals.

For Operational Phase:

o  Responsiveness to the program description and guidelines;

o  Institutional commitment to the IAIMS concept, including evidence of

significant cost-sharing;

o  Plans for support of IAIMS after the granting period; and

o  Sophistication and feasibility of the operational plan.


Applications will compete for available funding with all other

applications assigned to the NLM.  The following will be considered in

making funding decisions:

o  Quality of the proposed project as determined by peer review;

o  Availability of funds; and

o  Program balance considerations.


Written and telephone inquiries are encouraged.  The opportunity to

clarify any issues or questions from potential applicants is welcome.

Direct inquiries regarding programmatic issues to:

Mr. Richard T. West

Extramural Programs

National Library of Medicine

Bethesda, MD  20894

Telephone:  (301) 496-3113

FAX:  (301) 402-0421

Direct inquiries regarding fiscal matters to:

Ms. Ellen G. Meltzer

Extramural Programs

National Library of Medicine

Bethesda, MD  20894

Telephone:  (301) 496-4253

FAX:  (301) 402-0421


This program is described in the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance

No. 93.879.  Awards are made under authorization of the PHS Act, Title

III, Part A, Section 301, Title IV, Part D, Subpart 2, Sections

472-476, as amended, Public Law 100-607.  This program is not subject

to the intergovernmental review requirements of Executive Order 12372

or Health Systems Agency review.


(1) Grand Challenges 1993:  High Performance Computing and


To obtain a copy of this report, which was prepared for the President's

Office of Science and Technology Policy, call the IAIMS Program Officer

(see above) or send request to:  Federal Coordinating Council for

Science, Engineering, and Technology Committee on Physical,

Mathematical, and Engineering Sciences c/o National Science Foundation

Computer and Information Science and Engineering Directorate 1800 G

St., NW, Washington, DC 20550.


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