AUSTIN, Texas—The National Library of Medicine (NLM) has awarded the School of Information at The University of Texas at Austin and the Massachusetts General Hospital $413,087 to develop a digital library to assist in the understanding and teaching of infectious diseases.
The digital library, called “eMicrobes,” will be designed to assist healthcare professionals in identifying and treating the growing number of infectious diseases and global threats such as HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria and bio-terrorism.
“Understanding infectious diseases and microbiology is critical for healthcare providers,” said Gary Geisler, assistant professor in the School of Information and co-investigator on the project. “However, gaining this knowledge is difficult given the vast amount of information in the field and the limited training resources available to trainees and practicing physicians.”
Working with a team of physicians, medical librarians and medical education specialists from Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Geisler will develop the eMicrobes digital library to be an extensive and easily searchable library of interactive case studies and images that strengthen and aid the teaching of infectious diseases and microbiology.
Features of the library will include dynamic integration of relevant information from medical on-line resources such as PubMed to enrich case information and customizable options for storing and viewing the data.
In order to make the tool more useful in underserved areas that might not have Internet capability, the digital library will be developed so its resources can be stored and used on local computers or hand-held devices.
The National Library of Medicine, on the campus of the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md., is the world’s largest medical library. The library collects materials and provides information and research services in all areas of biomedicine and health care.
For more information contact: Amy Maverick Crossette, School of Information, 512-573-1078.