Skip all navigation and go to page content
NN/LM Home About PNR | Contact PNR | Feedback |Site Map | Help | Bookmark and Share

Disaster Health Information Outreach Award

NN/LM PNR is currently accepting proposals for Disaster Health Information Outreach Awards. The Application for 2012 Disaster Health Information Outreach Awards must be completed and submitted via email attachment by August 31, 2012. Projects must be completed by April 30, 2013.


NN/LM PNR, along with the National Library of Medicine (NLM), recognizes that it is critical to establish relationships with organizations that encourage and foster communication and information access. All those working in disaster medicine and public health need fast and easy access to the most up-to-date and accurate health information to effectively prepare for and respond to incidents. Evidence-based information from past events, incoming information from social media sources, and tools to aid in analysis are needed by health departments, hospitals, academic institutions, emergency management agencies, and non-governmental organizations to assist with disaster planning, as well as for response and recovery. Libraries and librarians are highly qualified to assist with these information needs.

Based on pilot disaster information studies at several institutions over the past three years and the Disaster Information Outreach Symposium in March 2011, NLM initiated funding for Disaster Health Information Outreach and Collaboration projects. NN/LM PNR is modeling this award after NLM's Disaster Health Information Outreach and Collaboration Projects for libraries and other organizations to work together to improve awareness of, access to, and use of disaster medicine and public health information by organizations, institutions, and agencies working in any phase of disaster/emergency management (all-hazards). NN/LM defines "disaster health information" broadly as clinical, public health, medical, and health information needed for preparedness, response and recovery from all-hazards disaster and emergencies, including public health emergencies. "All-hazards" includes natural events, terrorism, industrial accidents, transportation accidents, public health emergencies such as major disease outbreaks, chemical/biological/radiation/nuclear events with potential for causing mass casualities, and other incidents that require emergency response or have the potential to exceed local response resources.

Purpose and Objective:

The purpose of the Disaster Health Information Outreach Project is to design programs for improving disaster medicine and public health information access for health professionals, first responders and others (paid or volunteer) that play a role in health-related disaster preparedness, response and recovery. Emphasis is on providing information or access to health and medical information in a way useful to the target audiences, and increasing the awareness and utilization of high-quality professional-level online medical and public health information resources on disaster, all-hazards, and emergency topics including resources from the National LIbrary of Medicine. The purpose is also to promote new and creative collaborations on disaster health information needs among and to the mutual benefit of librarians, information specialists, or informationists and the disaster workforce.

Project Activities

Projects must involve two or more of the following information access categories:

  1. Needs Assessment: To determine and evaluate disaster health information needs, available resources, training needs, preferred information access tools, gaps in types or content of materials, and other aspects of the provision of informaiton services by and for librarians and the disaster workforce.
  2. Roles in Providing Disaster Health Information: To develop new or expanded roles for librarians/informationists with organizations that have major disaster health-related responsibilities and/or developp new or expanded roles for disaster workforce members' participation in development, evaluation, promotion and use of health information resources. To promote cross-training and mutual awareness of each organization's disaster roles and health information needs.
  3. Practices and Methods in Information Sharing: To develop collaborative information practices, methods, and communication tools among information organizations (libraries or similar) and disaster organizations for sharing of health information to enhance disaster planning, situational awareness, response, and recovery. Practices and tools could address, for example, building community resilience, online mapping of post-disaster resources, use of social medica in disaster, biosurveillance, and other means for enhancing communications. Projects may also support the health information needs of an institution developing continuity of operations plans or disaster response plans, but funds will not be provided for actually doing that planning.
  4. Skills Development: Training to develop skills in accessing or using disaster health-related information including the use of online databases and general disaster information resources in order to improve services, benefit the community, and enhance understanding of the context for using disaster information. This may include training for the staff of an agency, development of training programs for clients and patrons, training programs for other agencies, etc.
  5. Information Retrieval: To provide or improve access to electronic disaster medicine and public health information resources for organizations with disaster-related responsibilities or by the clients they serve and to implement access to state-of-the-art disaster health-related information tools via the Internet or mobile devices. This may require the purchase of hardware (computer equipment), software, or contractual relationships necessary to obtain a connection to the Internet for the benefit of organizations with disaster responsibilities and for the purpose of accessing and sharing disaster health-related information.
  6. Document Access: Access to disaster health-related documents and other types of health information. This may include the enhancement of library collections, development of connections between disaster-related organizations and local health sciences or other libraries to obtain use of their collections, to procure interlibrary loan service, etc.

Project participants are also strongly encouraged to participate in the NLM Disaster Information Specialist Program. One or more staff associated with a projcet should participate in the Disaster Information Specialist Program by subscribing to the DISASTR-OUTRACH-LIB listserv, participating in monthly Program conference calls, and contributing to collaborative efforts of this community of practice as appropriate.

Development of Training Materials

Successful applicants are expected to use or adapt existing training materials before developing new materials. Consult the Medical Library Association (MLA) Educational Clearinghouse,, prior to developing materials. Training materials developed as part of the award should be submitted to the MLA Educational Clearinghouse.


Eligible projects will be based on a partnership or collaboration that includes at least one library and at least one non-library organization that has disaster-related responsibilities. Either partner can be designated as the lead agency and submit an application. A single institution that includes both a library and non-library unit(s) with disaster-related responsibilities is also eligible; for example, a local government or hospital or university with both a library and departments with disaster responsibilities. NN/LM PNR is particularly interested in strong contributions from the disaster workforce and librarians, informationists and library staff in the development of these new programs.

Applicants must be members of the NN/LM PNR. Project personnel must have demonstrated experience using NLM resources, or identify a project partner with this expertise.

Period of Performance:

Disaster Health Information Outreach award activities must be completed by April 30, 2013.

Application Instructions:

Applicant should inform NN/LM PNR of their intent to apply no later than August 10, 2012 by emailing

The application, Application for 2012 Disaster Health Information Outreach Awards, must be submitted via email attachment to Gail Kouame, Consumer Health Outreach Coordinator, at by August 31, 2012.

Evaluation Criteria

Criteria for selection include: thorough description of the target audience and their needs; thorough description of available resources and potential barriers; feasibility of plan and project activities; creative partnerships and collaborations; appropriate evaulation plan; and appropriate budget.

Budget Guidelines

The allowable performance period for this award is 12 months. A detailed budget and justification is required. Funding will cover: personnel, equipment, software, Internet service provider fees, supplies, travel and reproduction of materials. These are examples only and are not meant to be all-inclusive. Purchase of print materials is permitted, but must not exceed 5% of the direct costs. Food and furniture are not allowed.

If your project is funded, you will be asked to provide the following:

  • For IT/ computer hardware under $3,000 per item: Vendor name and published pricing.
  • For IT/computer hardware of $3,000 or more per item: Three (3) vendor quotes (preferably valid for 60 days). Vendor quotes are necessary to determine price reasonableness for purchases. If a single item is over $3,000 and is not competed, then a sole source justification letter is required to indicate why it is the most advantageous purchase.

If personal appeal items such as cameras, MP3 players, smartphones, and laptop computers are proposed, please be prepared to submit the required elements listed on this web page upon approval of the award: [details]

Proposals must meet the following additional guidelines:

  1. If a website is developed under this award, the website must comply with Section 508 requirements for accessibility to people with disabilities [details].
  2. The awardee must acknowledge support of NLM whenever publicizing the work accomplished as a result of this award [details].
  3. If a journal article is published as a result of this project, the final peer-reviewed manuscript must be submitted to the PubMed Central digital archive in accordance with the NIH Public Access Policy [details].

Reporting Requirement:

The project leader will submit to the NN/LM PNR two reports: a mid-project and a final report.

The mid-project report is due at the halfway point of the award period and should include a summary of progress toward completing goals, modifications made to original project plan, a summary list of any training activities or exhibits conducted, lessons learned and plans for sustaining project activities.

Final reports must be submitted within 30 days of project completion by the awardee. Content for the final report will include (but not be llimited to): Executive Summary, Approaches and Interventions Used, Evaluation, Problems or Barriers Encountered, Impact, and Lessons Learned.

Progress and final reports must be submitted by the awardee using templates provided on the Project Reporting Toolkit. NN/LM PNR staff are available for any needed assistance.

In addition, when training activities or exhibits are conducted as part of the project, an Outreach Activity Data Collection Form or Exhibit Report must be submitted within 30 days of the training or exhibit. These forms and instructions are also linked from the Project Reporting Toolkit.

Lastly, awardees must also submit an article summarizing their project for publication in the Dragonfly, the NN/LM PNR's blog.


In making awards decisions, the NN/LM PNR will strive for diverse geographic distribution throughout the five states of the Northwest.

Maximum fixed price award is up to $15,000, to be paid incrementally at the time of the award and upon receipt of mid-point progress report and the final report.

The following statement is required to be included in this solicitation to comply with regulations for annual appropriation of federal funds:

All awards issued under the NLM Contract with University of Washington are subject to the Government's availability of funds in compliance of Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) 52.232-18, Availability of Funds. No legal liability on the part of the Government for any payment may arise until funds are made available to the Contracting Officer for this contract and until the Contractor receives notice of such availability, to be confirmed in writing by the Contracting Officer.

Need Help?

For additional information contact:

Gail Kouame, Consumer Health Outreach Coordinator,

Telephone: (206) 543-8262, 1-800-338-7657 (within AK, ID, MT, OR, WA)