GRU to host National Library of Medicine course in biomedical informatics

Augusta, Ga. – The National Library of Medicine has awarded the Georgia Regents UniversityRobert B. Greenblatt, M.D. Library a multi-year, $1.7 million contract to host its Biomedical Informatics Course.

The course, previously held at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Mass., offers participants a week-long immersive experience in biomedical informatics and provides continuing education to health care professionals interested in the application of computer technologies to medicine.

“We’re honored to host such a prestigious program, which has, for 22 years, provided crucial ongoing professional training to physicians, librarians, computer scientists, and other health professionals,” said GRU Vice Provost Dr. Roman Cibirka. “We hope to build on its rich history to provide important new resources and support for organizations as we shape the practice of 21st century medicine.”

The first course organized by GRU will be held Sept. 14-20, with subsequent courses every Fall and Spring through 2018. The course will be held at Brasstown Valley in North Georgia, twice a year, at no cost to participants. Registration, travel, housing, and meals are fully supported by the NLM.

While the course is open to all, only 30 applicants are selected.Participants must demonstrate a significant need for informatics solutions to challenges they’re facing in research, practice, and education.

“It’s a very competitive process. The attendees and faculty come from across the United States,” said GRU Director of Libraries Dr. Brenda L. Seago. “It’s an immersive experience, drawing on the knowledge of nationally known thought-leaders and educators in biomedical informatics. We hope to engage GRU experts and others to teach a great course.”

Participants are meant to serve as “change agents” who adopt best practices and, upon completion of the course, return to their institutions and teach others by example, said Seago, co-principal investigator along with Kathy J. Davies, Chair of Research and Education Services for the Greenblatt Library.

“The course covers so much more than the application of computers to medicine,” Seago said. “It’s database design, human-computer interfaces, coding systems, telemedicine, genomics, wide area network technologies, mathematical modeling, and more. The applications are really broad. It’s about the changing ways we practice medicine.”

The course is co-directed by Dr. James J. Cimino, Chief of the Laboratory for Informatics Development at the NLM and the National Institutes of Health Clinical Center, and Dr. Donald Lindberg, Director of the NLM. The GRU Division of Professional and Continuing Education will provide continuing education credits and manage course logistics under the direction of the Greenblatt Library.

You can find a NLM Georgia Biomedical Informatics application at and learn more at and the library website.

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