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Release: Jan. 2, 2003

Hardin Library wins grant to develop public health information Web site

The University of Iowa Hardin Library for the Health Sciences has received a grant of more than $47,000 to design a Web site that helps the state's local public health agencies prepare for public health emergencies and find needed information quickly.

The Iowa Access for Public Health Information Web site will gather local and state public health information together in one easy to use resource, said Jean Sayre, director of the Hardin Library and lead investigator for the grant. Although numerous government agencies and grant-funded projects provide information and training for local public health officials, none have been designed with a component that brings together state and local resources or emphasizes training for searching medical databases. The Web site will provide that component.

"The goal of the Iowa Access project is to create a stable, enduring information resource for public health professionals in Iowa," said Sayre.

She said Hardin librarians will also promote the site and train public health officials around the state to use it.

The $47,449 grant is co-funded by the National Library of Medicine and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Sayre said the site will be designed and implemented in collaboration with the UI College of Public Health, the Iowa Department of Public Health and the Iowa Association of Public Health Agencies.

Hardin Assistant Directors Hope Barton and Jim Duncan also helped to secure the grant.

The Web site will be unveiled at a statewide public health conference in August.

"As a service to the state of Iowa, the Hardin Library staff will maintain the Iowa Access to Public Health Information Web site after the project is over," Sayre said.