NIH Objectives
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Goal To support effective dissemination, communication, and utilization of HIV-related research information to researchers, health care providers, HIV-related service providers, HIV-positive individuals and their advocates, and all constituencies of the NIH.
Objective #1

Support the effective dissemination and utilization of HIV/AIDS information to all constituent communities of NIH.

Effective Communication: Exchange of information about basic, clinical, and behavioral HIV/AIDS research findings is essential to progress in research and ultimately to improved care and treatment for HIV-infected people. The traditional methods of reporting ongoing studies and research results in peer-reviewed journals and at scientific meetings may be slow and may reach only limited audiences. Health educators, health care providers, and patients, particularly those in underserved communities, need to know the results of clinical and prevention intervention studies, state-of-the-art recommendations, and the most up-to-date standards of health care. This information should be timely, include discussion of the potential implications of research findings for patient care, and should be in a form that audiences can use. The latest computer and information technologies should be exploited whenever appropriate. The findings resulting from communications research should be incorporated into the strategies to carry out this objective.
Action Steps
  • Rapidly disseminate new research findings with information on their potential implications on prevention, care, and treatment of HIV-infected individuals.
  • Expand access to current treatment and patient management guidelines including state-of-the-art care and information on clinical trials using multiple technologies such as, but not limited to, on-line access AIDSTRIALS and AIDSDRUGS data bases and voice access (HIV/AIDS Treatment Information Service and the AIDS Clinical Trials Information Service).
  • Improve current and develop and evaluate new techniques for the two-way communication of information to scientific and lay audiences, particularly to hard-to-reach populations.
  • Support community groups to access HIV/AIDS information resources in their development of educational materials.
  • Develop and disseminate educational information.
  • Enhance understanding of HIV and basic and clinical research processes by health care providers, community-based HIV/AIDS service organizations, and persons with HIV/AIDS.
  • Develop mechanisms for rapidly disseminating information on research in progress to the research community in order to increase collaboration, reduce duplication of effort, and enhance the discovery process.
  • Enhance communication with the pharmaceutical industry concerning research on the development of therapeutics and vaccines.
  • Communicate and exchange information internationally on topics such as prevention and treatment information, patient management guidelines, and research results that impact on the care of HIV-infected individuals, particularly in developing countries.
  • Support the exchange of basic, clinical, and behavioral research information at community, regional, national, and international conferences and workshops.
  • Provide on-line, in advance when possible, the full text of abstracts and other information from scientific meetings.
  • Collect, archive, and make available existing data from NIH-supported basic and applied research for secondary data analysis.
  • Disseminate widely information concerning specimen repositories, including existing repositories, specimens available and relevant information concerning cohorts, contact people, and the process for obtaining access to samples.
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of communication efforts by appropriate means, including obtaining feedback from target audience members and information dissemination intermediaries.
Objective #2 Support research to identify existing gaps in communications approaches, identify existing strategies that are effective, and develop and test new and innovative communication strategies that will improve access to and use of state-of-the-art HIV information by all relevant audiences.
Research: Past assessments have identified important information needs and barriers for relevant target audiences such as health care providers, service providers, people with HIV and their advocates, at-risk populations, basic and applied researchers, and the general public, and although significant communications efforts have been initiated, some communities still may not be (1) receiving needed information, (2) receiving information in a context appropriate for the audience, (3) comprehending the information, or (4) translating the information into action. New approaches are needed to ensure that the communication of information resulting from research is optimally effective.
Action Steps
  • Develop, test and evaluate innovative strategies for effectively reaching scientific audiences with relevant HIV information.
  • Investigate how and under what circumstances different communication and dissemination strategies influence the adoption of scientifically based HIV behavior change interventions and clinical practice activities in various populations.
  • Identify obstacles to information dissemination and develop and test possible ways to overcome these obstacles.
  • Assess the information needs of, and sources of information used by, various audiences, including biomedical and behavioral research communities, health care providers, service providers, people with HIV and their advocates, at-risk populations, and the general public.
  • Investigate the adoption of new technologies for disseminating basic and applied research findings.
  • Develop, improve, and evaluate the interface between human factors and emerging technologies for information exchange in HIV/AIDS.
Objective #3 Develop, implement, and evaluate mechanisms that promote coordination and collaboration on all current HIV/AIDS communication activities among NIH ICDs and with other Federal and non-Federal groups.
Coordination: The scientific and lay communities look to the NIH as a central source of information on HIV/AIDS. Since multiple NIH ICDs disseminate HIV/AIDS information to these communities, coordination of efforts is essential. In order to make more effective use of limited Federal dollars, increase efficiency, make better use of new technologies, and ensure credibility with the scientific and lay communities, there must be more collaboration and better coordination of communication activities within the NIH and between the NIH and other Federal Agencies, community groups, universities, and the private sector.
Action Steps
  • Build ongoing partnerships between community-based organizations and basic, clinical, and behavioral researchers through both the intramural and extramural research programs to encourage exchange of information and experience throughout the research process to enhance research, treatment, and prevention efforts.
  • For example, this could be accomplished through requirements in appropriate funding proposals to establish appropriate communication and coordination.
  • Promote closer interagency collaboration within PHS on information dissemination programs.
  • Coordinate collaboration among all ICDs in the provision of information about their clinical trials for HIV/AIDS to the AIDS Clinical Trial Information Service.
  • Maintain an interface with the Cancer Information Service and PDQ to provide information on clinical trials for AIDS-related malignancies.
  • Support use of HIV/AIDS resource on the Internet to facilitate domestic (NIH and non-NIH) and international research collaboration and data sharing. Continue collaborations with the United Nations/World Health Organization (WHO) AIDS program, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), and international AIDS agencies or societies to obtain and disseminate information about international clinical trials.
  • Collaborate with public and health sciences libraries to facilitate community group access to needed information.
  • Work within DHHS, including HCFA, and with the private sector in the development of medical standards of care for determining guidelines for reimbursement.
$ 16.2 million
$ 17.9 million
$ 17.7 million
All populations.
Researchers, clinicians, community and patient representatives, and NIH-affiliated advisory councils and committees.



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