HLA/Telstra Health Digital Health Innovation Award

HLA/Telstra Health Digital Health Innovation Award 2023

The HLA/Telstra Health Digital Health Innovation Award is funded by Telstra Health and maintained by the ALIA Health Libraries Australia group.

The Award is presented annually at a relevant HLA (ALIA) event. The recipient/s will be presented with a certificate and $3,000 to –

1. To implement the innovation or

2. To further their (or their team’s) professional development in the area of the innovation,

All arrangements are to be undertaken by the awardee/s after approval of the award and funds must be expended within 12 months of receiving advice of the award.

Selection Criteria

The Award focuses on innovation projects in health care information delivery with practical outcomes. The submission must fall into one of the following categories:

  1. The innovation is proposed (and the funds will be used to implement the innovation)
  2. The innovation has already been achieved (and the funds will be used to further develop the innovation, or for the professional development of the team);

The application should focus on the innovation and available evidence that the innovation has improved or will improve access to health information and health care (i.e. practical outcomes). Nominees must address each of the following selection criteria against which applications will be assessed:

  1. Contribution to, and enhancement of, the health library/information profession/industry
  2. Outstanding project work, whether by an individual or a team
  3. Collaboratively working within or between organisations
  4. Originality/innovation regarding services or solutions
  5. Excellence/innovation in terms of best practice
  6. Implementation and evaluation of the project (actual or intended methods and, where available, results)


The awardee/s will

  1. If the funds have been used to implement the innovation - report on the innovation outcomes via an article in JoHILA
  2. If the funds have been used for professional development- report on the professional development activity in JoHILA and, in addition,

All applicants must supply a title and abstract for their project. An abstract of the winning application will be made available via the Award website. 

The awardee/s will be advised of the latest JoHILA issue and deadline for their article. 


To be eligible to apply for this award

  • All professional award nominees must be current personal members of ALIA. In the case of an all professional team application, one team member, with the exception of the team leader, may come under the organisation's ALIA institutional membership.
  • Non-professional nominees must work in a library with ALIA institutional membership

Current Health Libraries Australia executive members, Award Administrators and employees of Telstra Health are ineligible to apply but may be nominators or seconders. 

How to Apply
  • Please refer to the nomination information at the top of this web page.
  • Nominations are made by completing the nomination form and submitting to the Award Administrator.
  • Endorsement of a seconder is required if self nominating.

14 July 2023, 5PM

Presentation of the award

The Award will be presented at an ALIA Health Libraries Australia Professional Development event (date to be announced). Funding will be provided for the winner’s travel costs, for one night’s accommodation and for the Professional Development Day registration fee. Where the award is won by a team, funding will be provided for the team leader only. All other costs must be covered by the individual.

Decision process

Nominees are considered by a Panel, with 2 representatives of the HLA Executive and 1 member of Telstra Health Management.

The nominations will be emailed to the Panel, which is chaired by an ALIA HLA Executive member.

  • The Panel will vote for their top 3 choices, in order of merit.
  • The 3 choices will be weighted (3 points for first choice, 2 points for second choice, one point for the third choice).
  • The winner will be by a simple majority – if there is a tie, the casting vote lies with the HLA Executive.
  • The ALIA HLA Executive will make a recommendation to the ALIA Membership and Awards Standing Committee to confirm the selected nominee.
  • The judges’ decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.

The Award was previously known as the HLA/MedicalDirector Digital Health Innovation Award (change occurred due to new sponsor in 2023).

Previous Winners

2023: Alice Anderson and Cassandra Gorton for Library Interactive Digital Information Screen 

2022: John Prentice for Automated interlibrary loan/document delivery (ILL/DD) database for health libraries 

2021: Trish Bennett and Alana McDonald for A Digital Room Booking System - a digital booking system to book the Sydney Children's Hospitals Network Medical Library group study rooms.

2020: Daniel McDonald for Shoosh: a podcast about health libraries

2019: David Honeyman for the System for Automatically Requesting Articles (SARA) – an automation tool to improve the speed of systematic reviews

2018: Justin Clark for The Polyglot Search Translator (PST): a tool for translating search strategies: phase 3.

2017: Helen Skoglund and Cecily Gilbert for Information Prescription program at Barwon Health: A digital health literacy initiative for patients in Intensive Care Unit (ICU) (This project has not been completed and the prize money has been returned to MedicalDirector).

2016: Veronica Delafosse for The evolution of health librarianship in Australia

2015: Kate Jonson, Ingrid Tonnison and Rianna Bryant for Preserving the past, looking to the future: a digital repository for the Central Coast Local Health district

2014: Lisa Kruesi and Connie Schardt, for Australian Evidence Based Practice Librarians’ Institute, 2011– 2014.

2013: Narelle Hampe and Suzanne Lewis at Central Coast Local Health District who implemented an e-portfolio project

2012: Sarah Hayman at CareSearch who developed a palliative care search filter

2011: Daniel McDonald at Toowoomba Clinical Library Service who introduced clinically-oriented audio presentations to their busy clinicians

2010: Terence Harrison who helped establish CEBPA (Centre for Evidence Based Practice Australasia)

2009: Trudi Maly, inaugural winner, at the Northern Territory Department of Health and Families for her work on the Clinical Practice Guidelines Quality Improvement Program

Closing date: 14 July 2023, 5PM (nomination form)