RELEASE DATE:  April 8, 2002

PA NUMBER:   PAR-02-096

EXPIRATION DATE:  03-15-05, unless reissued.  

National Library of Medicine (NLM)


o Purpose of the PA
o Research Objectives
o Mechanism(s) of Support 
o Eligible Institutions
o Individuals Eligible to Become Principal Investigators
o Special Requirements
o Where to Send Inquiries
o Submitting an Application
o Peer Review Process
o Review Criteria
o Award Criteria
o Required Federal Citations


The National Library of Medicine provides IAIMS grants to health-related 
institutions and organizations that seek assistance for projects to plan, 
design, test and deploy systems and techniques for integrating data, 
information and knowledge resources into a comprehensive networked 
information management system.

Integrated advanced information systems (IAIMS) are organization-wide or 
trans-organizational mechanisms that use computer networks to link and relate 
the published biomedical knowledge base with individual and institutional 
databases and information files, within and external to an institution. 
The IAIMS program described in this Program Announcement is a substantially 
revised version of the NLM"s existing IAIMS program, first announced in 1982 
and substantially revised in 1992.

Because health-related organizations exhibit considerable variation in their 
approach to information management, NLM"s IAIMS program offers several 
options for grant support: IAIMS Planning Grants, IAIMS Pilot Study Grants, 
IAIMS Testing and Evaluation Grants, IAIMS Operations Grants and IAIMS 
Fellowships. This program announcement describes only the IAIMS Fellowship. 
For information about other IAIMS grants, see their individual program 


The Internet, advanced computing technologies, and digital information have 
altered the information landscape. With access to data, information and 
knowledge no longer time- and place- dependent, new opportunities are 
emerging to improve health care, education and research. To benefit from 
these advances, health-related organizations must (1) seamlessly integrate 
their own digital information resources with relevant information obtained 
from external sources, and (2) bring digital information to health care 
teams, researchers, teachers, students, patients and the general public in a 
way supports sound decisions and effective action.

The long-term goal of NLM"s IAIMS program is a comprehensive and convenient 
information management system, one that brings useful, usable knowledge to 
action settings in health care, education and research. Particular emphasis 
is placed on organization-wide and trans-organizational mechanisms that 
enable the easy flow of information between arenas of action, such as between 
health care and education, or between health-related organizations, such as 
from a community clinic to a hospital or public health department. 

Since 1984, NLM has provided IAIMS grants to academic health sciences centers 
to build networks and organizational mechanisms for information management. 
In its first two decades, the emphasis of IAIMS was building organizational 
mechanisms and infrastructure that were largely internal to academic centers. 
Technological advances and widespread access to the Internet make it possible 
now to shift the emphasis of IAIMS from building these capabilities to using 
them.  The IAIMS challenge for the 21st century is to involve all kinds of 
health-related organizations in using local and national networks to acquire, 
manage, and deliver knowledge in a way that binds it to effective action.[1] 
The fundamental activity areas of today"s IAIMS program are these:

o CONTEXT-APPROPRIATE INFORMATION. People need usable, useful health 
information to guide their learning and decisions. Health care, education and 
research take place today in an information space fed by many sources of 
digital and printed information, some of which are not owned by an 
organization.  Each organization must implement approaches that select the 
right subset of information from the available sources, and present it in the 
way most effective for a given problem and person. Examples of context-
appropriate systems include:
o systems that deliver applicable "chunks" of published knowledge into 
settings in which clinical decisions are being made,
o systems that employ user profiles to tailor information resources or 
services to meet the needs of a key audience,
o systems that enable the exchange of data between research databanks and 
clinical health records,
o education modules that are delivered into workplace settings.

o STANDARDS-BASED INFORMATION MANAGEMENT. Integrated access to a collection 
of information resources and services (one-stop shopping) has always been a 
core purpose of IAIMS. Effective integration of data, information and 
knowledge requires common syntax and semantics. Health organizations must use 
common vocabularies and adopt information standards that support the 
integration and exchange of health information. Examples of standards-based 
information management include:
o standards-based applications that move clinical data from one proprietary 
system to another,
o systems that use components of the Unified Medical Language System (UMLS) 
to link library information to personal health records,
o systems that employ accepted standard data definitions in transmitting 
claims information or other reports electronically.

o DIGITAL LIBRARIES.  The phrase "digital library" refers to a collection of 
information, data or knowledge, stored on a computer and accessible across a 
network to other local and distributed computers. Examples of digital 
libraries include collections of electronic published articles and books, 
electronic personal health records, multimedia curriculum materials, research 
databanks and data warehouses of administrative or clinical information. The 
complex array of activities in academic health sciences centers and health 
care organizations can result in poorly- integrated information resources and 
services.  Departmental and organizational boundaries can impede the flow of 
usable, useful information (1) between centers of activity within a single 
organization (such as between 2 health professions school), or (2) among 
unaffiliated organizations, (such as departments at different universities or 
a community consortium of hospitals). Organizations must implement approaches 
that facilitate the use of information acquired in one arena of action, such 
as clinical care, by people in another arena, such as research.  

Information management includes such functions as:  methods of stewardship 
that assure the availability of useful, usable, accurate information, tools 
that allow authorized people to use information retrospectively and 
prospectively, in real time, for their chosen purposes, links from the 
organization"s knowledge store to knowledge that is external (i.e., not owned 
by the organization), evaluation of the costs and benefits to users of an 
information resource or service. Work in any fundamental IAIMS activity area 
requires the adoption of efficient, effective strategies for information 
management. A discussion of pertinent information management issues and 
processes is a required component of all IAIMS applications.

Applicants are encouraged to propose IAIMS projects that include more than 
one institution, or include organizations of different types such as 
hospitals, clinics, community centers and local government health 
departments. While more complex, such collaborative projects give desirable 
economies of scale, affect greater numbers of users, and take advantage of 
network technological advancements. 

IAIMS grants are not sequential grants. However, some IAIMS grants do have 
prerequisites. Please see the program details for each grant in the IAIMS 
program.  Organizations may apply for more than one type of IAIMS grant at 
the same time, but those applications will compete against one another for 


This PA uses the NIH F38 award mechanism. As an applicant, you will be solely 
responsible for planning, directing, and executing the proposed project.   

The IAIMS Fellowship grant provides a salary stipend not to exceed $50,000 
per year for one or two years. The amount of the salary stipend will be based 
on the salary or remuneration that the individual would have been paid by the 
home institution on the date of award. Stipends may be supplemented by an 
institution from non-Federal funds. The applicant"s home institution may 
request an allowance up to $6,000 per year for support of supplies, 
equipment, travel, tuition, fees, insurance, and remuneration for the IAIMS 

You may submit (an) application(s) if your institution has any of the 
following characteristics: 
o For-profit or non-profit organizations 
o Public or private institutions, such as universities, colleges, hospitals, 
and laboratories 
o Units of State and local governments
o Eligible agencies of the Federal government  
o Domestic

Any individual with the skills, knowledge, and resources necessary to carry 
out the proposed research is invited to work with their institution to 
develop an application for support.  Individuals from underrepresented racial 
and ethnic groups as well as individuals with disabilities are always 
encouraged to apply for NIH programs.    

To apply for support, an organization must submit an application on behalf of 
the individual seeking the fellowship. Fellows must be citizens or non-
citizen nationals of the United States, or have been lawfully admitted for 
permanent residence at the time of appointment. Individuals on temporary or 
student visas are not eligible. Physicians, dentists, nurses, health science 
librarians, researchers, educators, administrators, and other health 
professionals are eligible. Applicants must have a bachelor"s, master"s, or 
doctor"s degree or be enrolled in a program leading to such a degree and 
demonstrate a commitment to the health sciences.

It is not a requirement that this fellowship lead to a degree. Whether or not 
the training is used for credit or certification in an educational program is 
up to the applicant and the organization involved. Applications from minority 
individuals, and women are strongly encouraged.


The purpose of the IAIMS Fellowship is preparation for in-depth involvement 
in IAIMS work. The IAIMS Fellowship may be undertaken at the applicant"s home 
institution, and/or may involve an internship at another institution. The 
fellowship should include formal instruction, mentoring by an appropriate 
IAIMS mentor, and the completion of a hands-on project. The application for 
an IAIMS Fellowship should cover the following points:
o A learning program that prepares the candidate to work in one of the 
fundamental IAIMS activity areas,
o Designation of an IAIMS mentor and a description of the mentor"s 
o The goals and duration of the fellowship,
o The structure of the learning experience, including site visits and 
o A hands-on project related to the course of study.

Discussion of pertinent information management issues and processes is 

Each IAIMS fellow must have a mentor who advises and oversees the work. The 
IAIMS mentor should be expert in an area of informatics or information 
science that is pertinent to the applicant"s learning program, and/or have 
participated in IAIMS activities at another location. The mentor may be at 
the home institution of the applicant, or at another institution. 


We encourage your inquiries concerning this PAR and welcome the opportunity 
answer questions from potential applicants.   

o Direct your questions about scientific/research issues to:

Valerie Florance, Ph.D.
Extramural Programs
National Library of Medicine
Rockledge 1, Suite 301, 6705 Rockledge Drive
Bethesda, MD  20892
Telephone:  (301) 594-4882
FAX:  (301) 402-2952

o Direct your questions about financial or grants management matters to:

J. Christopher Robey
Extramural Programs
National Library of Medicine
Rockledge 1, Suite 301, 6705 Rockledge Drive
Bethesda, MD  20892
Telephone:  (301) 496-4221
FAX:  (301) 402-2952


Applications are to be submitted on the grant application form PHS 416-1 
[] and will be accepted 
at the standard application deadlines as indicated in the application kit, 
April 5, August 5, and December 5. Application kits are available at most 
institutional offices of sponsored research offices and online 
For assistance in downloading the application forms, contact GrantsInfo, 
Telephone (301) 710-0267, Email:

APPLICATION RECEIPT DATES: Applications submitted in response to this program 
announcement will be accepted at the standard application deadlines, which 
are available at  Application 
deadlines are also indicated in the PHS 398 application kit.

Complete Item 3 on the face page of the application indicating that the 
application is in response to this announcement and print F38 IAIMS 

The completed original and two legible copies along with the Personal Data 
form [], the Checklist 
[], appendix material, 
sealed reference reports, and other required information must be sent or 
delivered to: 

Center for Scientific Review
National Institutes of Health
6701 Rockledge Drive, Room 1040, MSC 7710
Bethesda, MD  20892-7710
Bethesda, MD  20817 (for express/courier service)

APPLICATION PROCESSING: Applications must be received by or mailed on or 
before the receipt dates described for new grants at The CSR will not 
accept any application in response to this PA that is essentially the same as 
one currently pending initial review unless the applicant withdraws the 
pending application.  The CSR will not accept any application that is 
essentially the same as one already reviewed.  This does not preclude the 
submission of a substantial revision of an application already reviewed, but 
such application must include an Introduction addressing the previous 


Applications will be reviewed for scientific and technical merit by NLM"s 
Biomedical Library and Informatics Review Committee, in accordance with the 
standard NIH peer review procedures []. In 
general, the review criteria customarily employed by the NIH for fellowship 
applications will be followed. 

As part of the initial merit review, all applications will:

o Receive a written critique
o Undergo a selection process in which only those applications deemed to have 
the highest scientific merit, generally the top half of applications under 
review, will be discussed and assigned a priority score
o Receive a second level review


The review criteria focus on four main components: 

Candidate: An assessment of the candidate"s previous academic and research 
performance and the potential to become an important contributor to 
biomedical, behavioral, or clinical science. 

Sponsor and Training Environment: An assessment of the quality of the 
training environment and the qualifications of the sponsor as a mentor for 
the proposed research training experience. 

Research Proposal: The merit of the scientific proposal and its relationship 
to the candidate"s career plans. 

Training Potential: An assessment of the value of the proposed fellowship 
experience as it relates to the candidate"s needs in preparation for a career 
as an independent researcher. 


In addition to the general review criteria outlined above, each IAIMS grant 
has a specific set of review criteria.

Critical Review Elements for IAIMS Fellowship Grants include the following:  
o Responsiveness to one or more of the IAIMS fundamental activity areas, 
o Learning program that is likely to produce intended results, 
o Substantive involvement of a suitable IAIMS mentor, 
o Hands-on project that is likely to achieve stated goals,
o Evidence of institutional support. 

Though not required, these elements will be highly favored by reviewers of 
IAIMS Fellowship grants: 
o Focus on building new informatics skills that allow the applicant to apply 
existing subject expertise in a new area,
o Focus on building subject expertise to complement existing informatics or 
information science expertise, 
o Formal coursework, e.g. informatics or information science courses in 
accredited programs.


Applications submitted in response to a PA will compete for available funds 
with all other recommended applications.  The following will be considered in 
making funding decisions:  

o Scientific merit of the proposed project as determined by peer review
o Availability of funds 
o Relevance to program priorities


involving Phase I and II clinical trials must include provisions for 
assessment of patient eligibility and status, rigorous data management, 
quality assurance, and auditing procedures.  In addition, it is NIH policy 
that all clinical trials require data and safety monitoring, with the method 
and degree of monitoring being commensurate with the risks (NIH Policy for 
Data Safety and Monitoring, NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts, June 12, 

the NIH that women and members of minority groups and their sub-populations 
must be included in all NIH-supported clinical research projects unless a 
clear and compelling justification is provided indicating that inclusion is 
inappropriate with respect to the health of the subjects or the purpose of the 
research. This policy results from the NIH Revitalization Act of 1993 (Section 
492B of Public Law 103-43).

All investigators proposing research involving human subjects should read the 
"NIH Policy and Guidelines" on the inclusion of children as participants in 
research involving human subjects that is available at 

policy requires education on the protection of human subject participants for 
all investigators submitting NIH proposals for research involving human 
subjects.  You will find this policy announcement in the NIH Guide for Grants 
and Contracts Announcement, dated June 5, 2000, at

Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circular A-110 has been revised to 
provide public access to research data through the Freedom of Information Act 
(FOIA) under some circumstances.  Data that are (1) first produced in a 
project that is supported in whole or in part with Federal funds and (2) 
cited publicly and officially by a Federal agency in support of an action 
that has the force and effect of law (i.e., a regulation) may be accessed 
through FOIA.  It is important for applicants to understand the basic scope 
of this amendment.  NIH has provided guidance at

Applicants may wish to place data collected under this PA in a public 
archive, which can provide protections for the data and manage the 
distribution for an indefinite period of time.  If so, the application should 
include a description of the archiving plan in the study design and include 
information about this in the budget justification section of the 
application. In addition, applicants should think about how to structure 
informed consent statements and other human subjects procedures given the 
potential for wider use of data collected under this award.

URLs IN NIH GRANT APPLICATIONS OR APPENDICES: All applications and proposals 
for NIH funding must be self-contained within specified page limitations. 
Unless otherwise specified in an NIH solicitation, Internet addresses (URLs) 
should not be used to provide information necessary to the review because 
reviewers are under no obligation to view the Internet sites.   Furthermore, 
we caution reviewers that their anonymity may be compromised when they 
directly access an Internet site.

HEALTHY PEOPLE 2010: The Public Health Service (PHS) is committed to 
achieving the health promotion and disease prevention objectives of "Healthy 
People 2010," a PHS-led national activity for setting priority areas. This PA 
is related to one or more of the priority areas. Potential applicants may 
obtain a copy of "Healthy People 2010" at

AUTHORITY AND REGULATIONS: 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 and administered under NIH 
grants policies described at 
and under Federal Regulations 42 CFR 52 and 45 CFR Parts 74 and 92. This 
program is not subject to the intergovernmental review requirements of 
Executive Order 12372 or Health Systems Agency review.  

The PHS strongly encourages all grant recipients to provide a smoke-free 
workplace and discourage the use of all tobacco products.  In addition, 
Public Law 103-227, the Pro-Children Act of 1994, prohibits smoking in 
certain facilities (or in some cases, any portion of a facility) in which 
regular or routine education, library, day care, health care, or early 
childhood development services are provided to children.  This is consistent 
with the PHS mission to protect and advance the physical and mental health of 
the American people.


[1] Next-Generation IAIMS: Binding Knowledge to Effective Practice. Florance, 
V. and Masys, D. Prepared under contract N01-LM 9-3523. Washington, D.C.: 
Association of American Medical Colleges, September 2001. The full technical 
report is available in PDF form at

Information about past and present recipients of IAIMS grants is available 
from the IAIMS Consortium at

Weekly TOC for this Announcement
NIH Funding Opportunities and Notices

Office of Extramural Research (OER) - Home Page Office of Extramural
Research (OER)
  National Institutes of Health (NIH) - Home Page National Institutes of Health (NIH)
9000 Rockville Pike
Bethesda, Maryland 20892
  Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) - Home Page Department of Health
and Human Services (HHS) - Government Made Easy

Note: For help accessing PDF, RTF, MS Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Audio or Video files, see Help Downloading Files.