NIH buys file-tracking system

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"Paperless model"

The National Institutes of Health has awarded a software contract to Bamboo Solutions to use an electronic system to track paper folders and eventually electronic ones for NIH's portfolio of $1.1 billion in grants for research on diabetes and kidney diseases.

The company will provide customized products to keep track of the grant portfolio for the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK). The contract is estimated at $340,000 and is part of the agency's efforts to develop paperless systems.

"This system will help us manage and track an ever-growing portfolio of research grants in an efficient manner," said David Mineo, NIDDK's chief grants management officer. "It will position us to incorporate electronic and paperless advances in administration into the current system."

Among the system's features is a way to track the location of paper folders detailing grant applications. The system eventually will be used to track electronic folders and record when they are returned to the system.

"The system was chosen because it is the best way for them to get to a paperless system," said Kathy Williams, partner manager at Bamboo Solutions.

Williams said the company is trying to develop a niche market by designing software that takes "a lot of programming time out of creating a solution."

Bamboo Solutions, a division of Vidar Systems Corp., develops and distributes WD3 -- a software product that manages and tracks any type of information via any Web, workstation or wireless device. Its customers include the U.S. Military Sealift Command.

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