In the fall of 1984, CDC conducted a systems planning study to look at the entire range of information needs and resources at CDC from a top level perspective. One of the outcomes of the study was the realization of the importance of information in CDC's mission and that information resources need to be strategically managed. Consequently, on June 3, 1985, Dr. James Mason, the Director, CDC, signed the reorganization plan that first established the Information Resources Management Office (IRMO) to provide leadership and coordination.
Over the course of the following 10 years, the information technology landscape has changed drastically --- from a relatively few Wang users typing text, to everyone having a powerful multipurpose computer on their desktop; from a few staff who had electronic messaging from a terminal, to everyone sending tens of millions of e-mails worldwide; from black rotary phones to sophisticated electronic instruments that automatically connect to automated attendants, voice/fax information systems, cellular phones, and faxes everywhere; from no administrative automation to a complex, integrated system of hundreds of automated administrative applications; from scientific and public health information that was only disseminated verbally or by paper, to numerous sophisticated online systems that give people around the world access to CDC's intellectual and knowledge resources; from a modest central computer facility to a state-of-the-art computer center rapidly approaching a trillion characters of data under its roof; from systems that depended on a central processor for all life, to a vast array of multidimensional systems, services, and computing facilities that can harness unbelievable computing power as needed; from point-to-point black coax cable for every terminal-to-host connection, to a universal cabling topology providing virtually everything-to-everything connectivity.
The future challenges for IRMO remain with being in close touch with CDC's users, customers, and partners in bringing the power and advantages of information technology to solve the scientific and business challenges of CDC's public health mission and vision of:
Healthy People in a Healthy World Through Prevention
This page last reviewed July 07, 2001.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention