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Case Studies

IDPH Learning Management System

How can you quickly and effectively prepare a public health workforce for bioterrorist attacks or unexpected emergency health incidents? Faced with this challenge, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) turned to CADE to develop a Learning Management System (LMS) to assess, train and manage the performance of its statewide corps of employees.

IDPH’s LMS is a web-based application through which training content is delivered and managed. It includes functionality for cataloging and launching courses, registering users, tracking user progress and assessing user learning. The LMS uses a browser interface to display a public front-end for the learner and a private back-end for administrators and instructors. It seamlessly displays real-time information, drawn from a secure database, within a graphically attractive and user-friendly interface. Competency-driven assessment and course associations are integrated in the system, as are online quizzing and evaluation processes. The result is measurement and reporting of training progress that is both accurate and automated.

The IDPH LMS was custom programmed to meet the specific needs of the state agency. To optimize the learning value of the system, Illinois wanted to identify workers in the local health departments who required training in particular competencies. The Department also sought to instantly create a roster of those workers, sortable by public health role, to determine what targeted training to provide to specific groups based upon need.

Federal funding requirements stipulated that IDPH needed to ensure that 80% of its workforce had been assessed for competencies associated with their professional roles by the end of the first year of implementation. As evidenced in the LMS’s extensive administrative reporting features, over 85% of the 5,500 local health department workforce had been assessed by that benchmark. To help meet that objective, CADE provided face-to-face training and consultation sessions with all county and local health departments on how to use the system and optimize tasks. These meetings also generated valuable client feedback, which is being incorporated into future upgrades and feature enhancements.

“The CADE LMS has provided us with the opportunity to gather information about the learning needs of the public health workforce from both the state agency perspective and the broader public health system in local communities,” says Gina M. Swehla, Chief of the Division of Human Resources at IDPH.

“We have established personal relationships with the folks at CADE that will last long beyond the life of this project. They have taken a complex concept and helped us produce a useful product. They have quickly responded to changes we have requested and worked closely with our staff to make improvements to the system as we rolled it out.”

In partnership with the Illinois Center for Public Health Preparedness, CADE has developed LMS’s for a number of states, cities and centers on a variety of models: Iowa Department of Public Health; Iowa Center for Public Health Preparedness; Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services; St. Louis University Center for Public Health Preparedness; Chicago Department of Public Health; Indiana State Department of Health; Mid-America Public Health Training Center. While they share a common core, each LMS is custom developed to meet the specific feature needs, user expectations, and public health objectives of the client.


  • Browser-based interface, available over the web
  • SQL server databasing, ASP.NET programming
  • Scalable and stable
  • Secure data
  • Supports online and face-to-face training options
  • Centralizes course and learner administration
  • Convenient reporting and learner assessment
  • Course recommendations linked to competencies and assessment results
  • Intuitive and user-friendly
  • Fully developed and tested
  • Built-in certification, quizzing, evaluation
  • Course sharing with other systems
  • For the learner: E-mail confirmation, view history, self-assessment by competency
  • Calendars, FAQs, mass e-mails to subgroups and customized e-mails
  • Multiple levels of administration permit customization beyond standard course administrator and global administrator; cascading system of read/modify/approve rights based on administrative level
  • Asynchronous dialogue course approval process for administrators
  • Individually branded interface
  • SCORM compliant
  • Section 508 compliant

For more information about our Learning Management Systems services, visit the CADE LMS web site or contact Colleen Monahan at or (312) 203-0505.

IDPH LMS home page

IDPH LMS Needs Assessment

IDPH LMS Course Calendar

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