Archive for the ‘News from NLM/NIH’ Category
Friday, March 13th, 2015
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) took a giant step forward in enabling the public to obtain results of government-funded research. HHS released a comprehensive set of plans outlining how its agencies will expand access to the results of scientific research for the public. These plans were developed in response to a White House Office of Science and Technology (OSTP) memorandum that directed federal research agencies to increase access to peer-reviewed scientific publications and digital data developed by researchers.
Within HHS, five of the largest research funding agencies developed plans in accordance with HHS’s common approach to Public Access: National Institutes of Health (NIH), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), and the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR). These plans build on our existing Open Government goals of increasing transparency, collaboration and participation, and lowering barriers to accessing health information.
Our plans expand upon an NIH requirement that investigators make any peer-reviewed publications resulting from their NIH-funded research available to the public within 12 months of publication. The centerpiece of the effort is PubMed Central (PMC), a free full-text archive of the biomedical and life sciences journal literature, supported by the National Library of Medicine.
HHS’ Public Access Plan Details
HHS’s public access plans are expanding access to research results in two key domains: peer-reviewed publications and digital data.
Peer-reviewed Publications – We are expanding the types of peer-reviewed articles that will be required to be deposited into PMC. Researchers funded by NIH, CDC, FDA, AHRQ and ASPR will be required to submit their publications into PMC within 12 months of their publication. The addition of these agencies will increase the corpus of available research to include new topics such as: comparative effectiveness, emergency preparedness, public health, environmental health, and toxicological research.
Digital Data – We are also requiring that the data produced by researchers be made publically accessible in a digital format. At a minimum, the data underlying publications will need to be available at the time of publication. As part of this effort, our agencies will require that investigators submit data management plans outlining how their data will be managed and shared as part of their initial research proposals.
View HHS’s public access plans.
Impact of Greater Access to Health Information
Given that health information is one of the most highly sought after types of information on the web, the impact of successful implementation of our public access plans is likely to be significant. We anticipate our public access efforts will augment the over 3 million papers that are currently available to the public through PMC. Our requirements will add to this repository an estimated 110,000 peer-reviewed scholarly articles authored by HHS-funded researchers each year. This is just the tip of the iceberg. As a result of the partnerships we have established with many of the leading scientific publishers, additional journal articles are being voluntarily added to PMC. As the contents of PMC grow and diversify, we anticipate that it will create yet more opportunities for new connections to be made among disparate fields of scientific inquiry, and new types of knowledge and insights that can benefit health and healthcare. We expect it will allow for faster dissemination of research results into products, services and clinical practices that can improve healthcare.
We expect the new requirements for data sharing will be highly impactful, not only in terms of follow-on research that can be enabled, but also for ensuring the integrity of the scientific enterprise through allowing others to confirm the reproducibility of any published experiment. By ensuring that all publicly released research data is provided in open, machine-readable formats that can easily be accessed for computational analysis and machine-learning, it is our hope that we can help realize the promise of ‘big data’ in medicine and healthcare.
Next Steps for Public Access
A major focus over the coming year will be the policy development processes necessary to turn these plans into practice. Several agencies, such as FDA, AHRQ and ASPR, will be developing public access policies for the first time. Other agencies, such as NIH and CDC, will be updating existing policies. In parallel with the policy development efforts, we will be working to integrate new partners into PMC, which will include new segments of the publishing and research communities.
Over the next year, we will continue our efforts to explore how we can develop the infrastructure necessary to support data linkages across HHS, and facilitate the public’s ability to locate and access data published by our funded researchers. Outreach and communications to our partners, both internal and external, will be critical to the success of our public access efforts. We look forward to working together with all of the stakeholders to increase the usability of health research funded by HHS, and to creating an information ecosystem that will catalyze improvements in health and healthcare for all Americans.
Friday, March 13th, 2015
The NCBI homepage has six new buttons on it: Submit, Download, Learn, Develop, Analyze, and Research. Each of these leads to an action page devoted to a particular set of services. These action pages allow easy access to the pages and resources you need to complete tasks. For instance, you can: Find information about the Entrez API; Find an upcoming NCBI webinar, Find an NCBI tool that designs PCR primers, and much more! On the new action pages, you’ll also see six categories in the header: Literature, Health, Genomes, Genes, Proteins, and Chemicals. These category pages highlight useful databases, tools and resources for each of the topics all in one place.
Also included is a blue Feedback button on the left side of the Download, Learn, Develop, and Analyze pages so that you can send comments to NCBI. More information about the new homepage will be released on NCBI News and to the blog, NCBI Insights.
Friday, March 13th, 2015
As announced in the Federal Register, the Scientific Report of the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee is now available. Individuals are encouraged to submit written comments to the federal government on the Advisory Report. Written comments will be accepted online through midnight EDT on April 8, 2015.
The Dietary Guidelines for Americans encourages individuals to eat a healthful diet — one that focuses on foods and beverages that help achieve and maintain a healthy weight, promote health, and prevent chronic disease. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) jointly publish the Dietary Guidelines every 5 years. HHS and USDA will host a public oral comment meeting on March 24, 2015. Meeting registration is now open, and the meeting agenda is available. Please direct all media inquiries to ASHMedia@hhs.gov or call (202) 205-0143.
Friday, March 6th, 2015
We are pleased to announce the new issue of our newsletter, The MAReport. We have a nice range of topics in this issue. We want to highlight the interesting “Member Spotlight” article by Valli Hoski.
Friday, March 6th, 2015
As of Friday, February 27, the National Library of Medicine’s MedlinePlus resource is no longer providing a library of interactive tutorials from the Patient Education Institute. The Anatomy and Surgery videos remain available.
This decision is based on trends NLM has observed from users, and the desire to provide information that most closely aligns with user needs. NLM welcomes feedback about how MedlinePlus information should be presented and what type of content is missing. Feel free to send suggestions or comments through the Contact Us form.
Friday, March 6th, 2015
Check out the March issue of NIH News in Health, the monthly newsletter bringing you practical health news and tips based on the latest NIH research. In this issue:
- Be a Partner in Clinical Research: Help Others, Help Yourself
Did you know that you can participate in clinical research? Whether you’re healthy or sick, young or old, male or female, you’re probably eligible to participate in some type of clinical study. Maybe you or a loved one has an illness, and you’d like to help scientists find a treatment or cure. If you’re healthy, you can help researchers learn more about how the body works or how sickness can be prevented.
- Better Check Your Bowels: Screening for Colon and Rectal Cancer
Colorectal cancer is the second-leading cause of cancer death nationwide. But it can usually be cured when caught early. Screening tests like colonoscopy can save lives by catching problems before symptoms even appear, when treatments might work best.
- Are You at Risk for Alcohol-Medication Interactions?
Many people may be both drinking alcohol and taking prescription drugs that interact with alcohol, according to an NIH-funded study. The finding highlights the need to talk with a health care professional about the risks of drinking alcohol while taking prescription medications.
- Measles: Preventable with Vaccines
Measles is a highly contagious disease caused by a virus. It starts with a fever, followed by a cough, runny nose, and red eyes. A rash of tiny, red spots then breaks out and spreads. Measles can be especially dangerous to children under 5 years old. It can lead to pneumonia, swelling of the brain, and even death. The good news is that measles can be prevented by getting a vaccine.
NIH News in Health is available online in both HTML and PDF formats. Print copies are available free of charge for offices, clinics, community centers, and libraries within the U.S. Visit the NIH News in Health Facebook page to suggest topics you’d like to see covered, or share what you find helpful about the newsletter!
Friday, March 6th, 2015
Today, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is inviting private payers, employers, providers, patients, states, consumer groups, individual consumers, and other partners within the health care community to participate in the Health Care Payment Learning and Action Network (“Network”). First announced on January 26 by HHS Secretary Sylvia M. Burwell, the Network has been created to support the transformation of the nation’s health care delivery system to one that achieves better care, smarter spending, and healthier people through the expansion of new health care payment models.
Cooperation through the Network supports efforts to help the entire U.S. health care system match or exceed the goals recently announced for Medicare: tying 30% of fee-for-service payments to quality or value through alternative payment models by the end of 2016 and tying 50% of payments to alternative payment models by the end of 2018. It will also support the broader goal of tying the vast majority of payments in the health care system to quality or value.
For more information on the Network, please visit: innovation.cms.gov/initiatives/Health-Care-Payment-Learning-and-Action-Network/. The Network’s kickoff event is planned for March 25, 2015.
Attached are a fact sheet, frequently asked questions document, and blog post about the Network. The blog post can also be found here: http://www.hhs.gov/healthcare/facts/blog/index.html. Please contact the CMS Office of Legislation (202-690-8220) if you have any questions. Thank you.
Friday, March 6th, 2015
A few months ago, CDC redesigned its health literacy website to increase access to a number of tools and trainings. These solutions were designed to help you to produce accurate, accessible and actionable health information, whether you’re new to health literacy or a seasoned veteran.
John Parmer, Health Communication Specialist in the Office of the Associate Director for Communication (OADC) will lead a live tour of the website. John has helped to coordinate health literacy activities across the agency. In that role, he was involved in the launch of the Clear Communication Index as a research-based tool.
- Two digital tours will be offered of CDC.gov/healthliteracy and Clear Communication Widget in partnership with Appalachian Community Cancer Network, National Network Libraries of Medicine, Heath Care Improvement Foundation and Regional Health Literacy Coalition.
- Chose the time that best suits you. There will be two tours. The first is on Tuesday, March 24 at 10 am (EST) and the second is on Thursday, March 26 at 1:00 pm (EST).
Free registration for either time: https://j.mp/CDCwebtour
Friday, March 6th, 2015
Save the Date! NLM’s Disaster Information Management Resource Center (DIMRC) will have a very special presentation at their April 9th webinar from Patrick Meier, PhD. Patrick is an internationally recognized speaker and thought leader on humanitarian technology and innovation. He will talk about being a digital humanitarian which is the subject of his recent book entitled “Digital Humanitarians: How Big Data is Changing Humanitarian Response.”
Patrick is currently the Director of Social Innovation at QCRI where he both develops and deploys unique next generation humanitarian technologies in partnership with multiple humanitarian groups. Among his many accomplishments, Patrick co-founded and co-directed the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative program on Crisis Mapping and Early Warning and served as Director of Crisis Mapping for Ushahidi. Ushahidi made major contributions during the Haiti earthquake response through deploying its innovative crowdsourcing platform.
Patrick has received a numerous awards and recognitions for his work, including being named as a National Geographic Emerging Explorer. Read more about Patrick at http://irevolution.net/bio
This webinar will be presented live through Adobe Connect and recorded for future viewing. More information about logging into this webinar will be posted at: http://disasterinfo.nlm.nih.gov/dimrc/dismeetings.html
Monday, March 2nd, 2015
I’m writing to thank you for being a part of history. Each of us at this Department – in our own way – impacts millions of lives, and for the better. This week was one of the great reminders of what this impact means to a family as they sit at their kitchen table and plan for their future.
As you know, Open Enrollment in the Health Insurance Marketplace came to a close on Sunday, and about 11.4 million Americans signed up or were re-enrolled in coverage (and there are thousands more who are still enrolling through this week). Of course this is in addition to the millions of young adults who now have coverage through their parents’ health plans and the millions of people that are eligible for Medicaid or CHIP.
I want to invite you to reflect for a moment about what this means for the good, hardworking people that we serve; what it means for a mom or a dad to know that they can take their children to the doctor or finally afford to fill a prescription or no longer have to choose between paying tuition bills and paying for health coverage.
Think about what this means to a resilient American like Laura Gonzalez, who I met in Jacksonville. She’s a 26-year old mother of two who is studying to be an ultrasound tech. Her husband is a truck driver and he does not receive insurance through his work. Thanks to the Marketplace, they’ve been able to get covered for only $41 a month.
People like Laura were helped in the last few months by assisters, call center employees and volunteers across the country – and we owe them a tremendous debt of gratitude, along with the state and local officials, Members of Congress, and others who worked so hard to help their constituents.
Helping people like Laura is what public service is all about. For more than a century, our country has wrestled with the question of how to cover the uninsured. You’ll be able to tell your children and grandchildren that you were a part of the answer.
Whether you work directly on implementation of the Affordable Care Act, or whether you’re part of one of the countless other efforts the people of our Department undertake day-after-day, your work has meaning, and I am grateful for your service.
Sylvia M. Burwell