Our main activities are
- Maintenance and Technical Supports
We provide maintenance and supporting services to the eGovernment applications, Virtual Library, IMR online library and communication systems. We continue to support, operate and manage information technology applications, databases and communication networks.
- Development of Applications
Few applications are usually developed every year, mainly for the diagnostic laboratories and the management of IMR’s quality objectives. Technical supports, including one-to-one tutorials in design and development of few in-house desktop applications are also provided to the IMR’s users. The Application Team will continue developing more web-based applications in future.
A client-server application that is used to maintain, manage and monitor regular medical check-up records of staff above 40 years of age was developed. Few other laboratory-based applications such as Leptospira, Rickettsia and mySpecimenReception were also developed.
- Research Project Budget Monitoring System
This system was developed to manage research funds and effectively monitor the expenditures involved in carrying out research projects in IMR. This system also won the Administration Innovation Award during the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Research Week 2014.
- Course Registration and Approval System
This system allows users to register the internal courses online. Upon login, user can select the courses based on schedule and submit for approval by the unit/centre head. A notification email will be sent to the respective unit/centre head. Administrator can easily check the registration status and history of the user, i.e. first-time user, repeated user, registered but not attended the class previously, approval status of the unit head/centre head. Management of the course registration which was traditionally via paper-based application form is made easy, instant and environmental friendly with the online course registration and approval system.
- Online Booking System
Recently developed applications are web-based online Booking System to manage the booking and usage of meeting rooms, transport and other resources.
- Supplier Assessment System
This system changed the way to assess suppliers from the excel spreadsheets to record and rank the performance of suppliers to a web-based application.
An application to collect and analyse data was also developed for the MyBFF@school project (My Body Is Fit and Fabulous at School). MyBFF@school is a school-based intervention programme to address and curb the high prevalence of childhood obesity in Malaysia.
- Other system
In-house application of Quality Assurance Program for Microbiology was enhanced to improve the laboratory reporting system. The Unit also helped design and manage a simple system for online registration of workshops and seminars during the NIH Research Week 2014.
3. Maintenance of IMR Web Portal
IMR Web Portal Team was set-up to assist the development of a new web portal that meets the general and security requirements of government agencies. A new Content Management System was introduced to the IMR web portal’s content editors and general users.
4. Technical Awareness and Training
Since 2009, series of IT Updates and Best Practices have been organised and introduced to all IMR users to create technical awareness and update users with latest ICT technology. The Unit organises and provides IT courses to enhance staff’s basic knowledge and skills in using office automation applications and web development. Basic and Immediate levels of office automation courses are offered to the staff. Hardware support training sessions supervised by certified external trainers have also been regularly provided to our technical support staff. Several new courses were introduced, i.e. Web-based Application, Introduction to PHP, How to use Google Forms, Open Office and Excel Dashboard and Interactive Reports.
5. Self-Learning Tools
Two How-To videos have been created and distributed to guide users through specific tasks in Microsoft Excel and Access. These videos have been used as self-learning tool and reference material for the IMR users and training participants of the ICT courses. More self-learning videos will be provided from time to time, depending on the users’ needs.
6. Consultative Services
IT Unit provides technical support as a focal point for WHO surveillance of antibiotic resistance programme. It has been assisting and providing solutions to further improve the management of laboratory data especially during disease outbreaks. Technical support was also provided to the Institute for Medical Research Culture Collection in the data management of preservation process of bacterial and fungal cultures.
IMR’s IT Unit set-up the equipment and environment, and provide technical assistance for a webcasting session of the 25th Course in Medical Genetics provided by the European Genetic Foundation at 20-23 May 2012.
IMR as the SEAMEO-TROPMED Regional Centre for Microbiology, Parasitology and Entomology participated in the Readiness Survey of SEAMEO Centres for SEAMEO College Programme at 10-14 September 2012. A web conference session was set-up by IT Unit with the expertise and technical assistance from SEAMEO Regional Open Learning Centre, Indonesia (SEAMEO SEAMOLEC).