The UAB Sparkman Center for Global Health has teamed up with the University of Iowa/Widernet “eGranary” Project to build a digital library of health information resources for students and practitioners in medicine, nursing, public health, and other health-related disciplines for several Zambian institutions, including the University of Zambia (UNZA), Chainama College of Medical Sciences, and the Centre for Infectious Disease Research in Zambia (CIDRZ).
Due to the limitations of access to the Internet (either because of availability, slow speed, or high cost) in many parts of the world, including Zambia, this computer-based tool, the eGranary Digital Library, is a LAN/Intranet based off-line repository of digital information. While it does not need to be connected to the Internet, the eGranary interface is much like using a web browser, and users can access any material that can be digitized. This project will help users of the eGranary access health information and training materials through specially created "portals" organized by content and type, including: e-books, web pages/web sites, articles, DVDs/videos, case studies, tutorials or curricula, and clinical practice guidelines.
The initial installation and training sessions occured during June-July of 2009 at the University of Zambia, Chainama Hills College of Health Sciences, the Centre for Infectious Disease Reseach in Zambia, and the Zambian Forum for Health Research (ZAMFOHR). An updated version of the eGranary was installed and further training sessions were held at those locations during the summer of 2010. In addition, the eGranary was installed at a new site, the Chikankata Mission Hospital, a rural hospital and training center approximately 125 km south of Lusaka.