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Technology Improvement Awards

Network organizations in the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, Pacific Northwest Region (NN/LM PNR) are eligible to receive up to $7,500 for the purchase, installation, and/or upgrading of hardware and software that enhance access to health information.


A Technology Improvement Award is intended to enhance the capacity of a library or organization to offer electronic health information services by supporting the purchase, installation, and/or upgrading of hardware and software.

Priority will be given to proposals that:

  • Respond to a previously identified health information access need
  • Have active support of the institution's information technology staff
  • Include a clear strategy for evaluating project outcomes

Examples of potential Technology Improvement Projects:

  • Upgrading equipment in a computer lab or learning center to facilitate hands-on computer-based instruction
  • Establishing a mobile workstation (i.e. with laptop, printer, and projector on a rolling cart) to be used when providing information services outside of the library
  • Using mobile devices to support access to health information at the point of need, such as for emergency responders or patient care teams on bedside rounds
  • Creating unique Web-based health information literacy tutorials, learning modules, mobile applications or data mashups
  • Installing adaptive hardware and software to better enable individuals with disabilities to access computer-based health information
  • Implementing or improving Web-based document delivery service

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.


Applicants must be members of the NN/LM PNR.

Period of Performance

Technology Improvement Award activities should be completed by April 30, 2014.

Application Instructions

Applicants should inform NN/LM PNR of their intent to apply no later than December 28, 2012 by emailing

The completed Technology Improvement Award Application along with letters of support, must be sent as an email attachment to Mahria Lebow at no later than February 1, 2013. Word document format is preferred. Please use "Technology Improvement Award" in the subject line of the email. The PNR staff will acknowledge your application when received and notification of awards will be given within four weeks of the application deadline.

Evaluation Criteria:

Criteria for selection include: a clearly stated information need for a well-defined audience; appropriate hardware and/or software to meet project goals; feasibility of project; and appropriate budget.

Budget Guidelines:

A brief budget and justification is required. 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 vendor 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 guidelines:

  1. If NN/LM funding is used to develop web-based resources, the resources must comply with Section 508 requirements for accessibility for people with disabilities [details].
  2. The awardee must acknowledge the 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 Requirements:

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 limited 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.


Total cost must not exceed $7,500.

In awarding these funds, the UW Regional Medical Library requests standard indirect costs not be taken, to allow the institution receiving the award to participate fully in the mission of the project.

For additional information, contact:

Mahria Lebow, Regional Technology Coordinator, NN/LM PNR
Telephone: (206) 221-3489, 1-800-338-7657 (within AK, ID, OR, MT, WA)