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National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)

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Wednesday, September 13, 2006


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New National Institutes of Health Web site for Child Health and Human Development

Need information on reading disability? Want to know how much calcium is in a serving of broccoli? Trying to find out how to apply for a research grant to study spinal cord development in zebrafish? Check out http://www.nichd.nih.gov.

The component of the National Institutes of Health that conducts and supports research on human development, medical rehabilitation, and the health of children, adults, families, and communities, launched its redesigned Web site. The new National Institute of Child Health and Human Development site provides easy access to information for patients, the general public, scientists, and the news media.

“The new site provides fast and easy access to a wide array of information, from child health, to developmental disorders, to women’s health, to basic and clinical research,” said Duane Alexander, M.D., director of the NICHD. “This site is useful not only to people who need health information; it’s also a tool for scientists who need research information”

Since its creation by Congress in 1962, the NICHD’s diverse mission has encompassed research across the life span. The Institute’s research portfolio includes development before and after birth; maternal, child, and family health; reproductive biology and population issues; and medical rehabilitation. NICHD research has led to advances enabling millions of people in this country and around the world to lead healthier lives.

The NICHD’s new site has undergone major changes in content, navigational features, and design. One premier feature is an A to Z topics list, which offers information on health conditions, disorders, programs, and topics. Reflective of the NICHD’s mission, these topics span the gamut, from autism, to endometriosis, to gestational diabetes, to reading disabilities. The site also links to corresponding NICHD publications and materials.

Moreover, users will find links to clinical trials (research studies involving volunteers) and to the Institute’s public education campaigns: Back to Sleep (reducing the risk of sudden infant death syndrome), Milk Matters (the importance of getting enough calcium during the preteen and teen years), and Media Smart Youth (teaches young people to evaluate media messages about nutrition and physical activity).

Scientific researchers coming to the NICHD Web site will find extensive information on the Institute’s research components and supported projects. Through a directory that is searchable by research specialty, researchers and potential grantees will now be able to find program staff and scientists who share their research interests. Scientists seeking financial support for their own research projects or training will be able to access information tailored for their level of familiarity with the federal funding process or to the current stage of their research career.

The redesigned Web site also provides members of the news media with convenient access to current and past news releases, science advances, as well as media resources, such as video and audio clips. In addition, the site also offers help to reporters seeking to arrange interviews with NICHD scientists and officials.

“As an Institute with a broad mission, we attract diverse audiences to our Web site,” Dr. Alexander said. “This new design helps each of our audiences quickly access information that meets their needs.”

The redesigned site was unveiled at the Institute’s September 11, 2006, meeting of the NICHD’s National Advisory Child Health and Human Development Council.

The NICHD sponsors research on development, before and after birth; maternal, child, and family health; reproductive biology and population issues; and medical rehabilitation. For more information, visit the Institute’s Web site at http://www.nichd.nih.gov/.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) — The Nation's Medical Research Agency — includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. It is the primary federal agency for conducting and supporting basic, clinical and translational medical research, and it investigates the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.


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