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Archive for the ‘General’ Category

Libraries can tackle today’s challenges!

Friday, January 22nd, 2016

How can libraries play a role in transforming cities? Colleagues at the Lexington Public Library and Indiana University Northwest’s Anderson Library provided answers to this question in the form of a proposal to the Knight Cities Challenge. In its second year, the Knight Cities Challenge asks organizations to outline ways to transform communities. GMR cities in the challenge include: Akron OH, Detroit MI, Duluth MN, Ft. Wayne IN, Gary IN, Grand Forks ND, Lexington KY, and St. Paul MN. (more…)

Changes in Regional Advisory Council Membership

Tuesday, January 19th, 2016
RAC members listening to the GMR update at the November 2015 meeting

RAC members listening to the GMR update at the November 2015 meeting

As many of you know, the GMR has a Regional Advisory Council (RAC) to provide guidance in developing and evaluating programs and services that meet the needs of the region. This council is made up of state representatives, five resource library directors, and members who represent a hospital/nursing college library, a non-medical academic library, and community organizations. Beginning last summer, we’ve had some changes in our RAC membership. (more…)

Season’s Greetings from the GMR 2015

Monday, December 7th, 2015

GMR Holiday Card 2015

Checklist for Applying for the GMR Technology Improvement Award

Tuesday, October 13th, 2015

Whether you are applying this time for a Technology Improvement Award (Reminder: deadline is October 15!), or considering applying in the future, you may find this checklist helpful.

10 Things to Keep in Mind When Applying for a TIA From the GMR

  1. Are you a member or affiliate member? Check here:

    Enter your library or institution name, leave the Membership Level and Library Type blank (so it will search “All”) and click the search button. If your institution doesn’t show up, try a new advanced search (click the link on the left side of the page) using the location (try just city and state).

    If your library/institution is listed: click on the details link and look at the URL in the browser address bar; your LIBID will be at the end of the URL

    If your library/institution is not listed: Go to the GMR Membership page ( to see how to apply. There is a link to our handy online application form at the bottom of the page.

  2. Questions 10 to 17 on the application form are the narrative section of the application.   Note that the summary statement requested in Question 10 should be an “executive summary” or “elevator speech” type of statement (a 200 word limit is recommended). Details should be provided in the rest of the questions. Also note Question 17 (“Additional Comments”) can be used for details rather than putting everything in Question 10.

  3. In question 13, provide the details of what equipment you will purchase. This should be a narrative, not a detailed list (that comes in question 18 –but make sure the details in the narrative match the details in question 18!)

    Before you answer this question, however, make sure your IT department, Institutional Purchasing department, and any other department that will be involved are all on board with your selection. It is always a good idea to include, under the “how it was chosen” section, a note about your institution’s requirements and how you are complying with them.

    If your institution’s IT or purchasing departments have issues with Apple products that you are requesting (which you would probably learn about by involving them in this process), note here how you will handle that.

  4. Question 14 is important: you will need to measure outcomes and report on them once the project is completed. Make sure measureable outcomes are part of the process from the beginning.

  5. Try to be realistic in the schedule for Question 15. Things can change, but if you have everything ready ahead of time (especially understanding any hoops you will face at your institution), you should be able to give a reasonably accurate time line. Important: projects awarded under this CFA must be finished by April 30, 2016!

  6. Note in Question 16 that resumes or CVs will be needed for all key personnel listed. Consider working directly with your IT department and listing them as key personnel as well.

  7. Question 17 is for all the details and narrative that you wanted to include in the summary (Question 10). Make use of the space here!

  8. Question 18: the equipment details. Note that “brief narrative justification” here means just that. The fuller justification should be in Question 13.

    Note subsection “b” requirements for any piece of equipment over $3000, and subsection “c” requiring documentation if your institution uses a single vendor or sole source.

  9. Check (and double check!).   Do you have:

    • A complete application, all questions filled in?
    • A reasonably accurate timeline?
    • All key personnel listed (including IT people)?
    • All required equipment listed (including extra software)?
    • Resumes or CVs?
    • Letters of support from all stakeholders?
    • Equipment pricing documentation?

  10. Submit it!

My Experience at the 2015 Wisconsin Health Literacy Summit

Tuesday, June 9th, 2015

HLposterBy Pa Thao
Health Programs Manager
Hmong American Center
Wausau, Wisconsin

First of all, many thanks goes to the National Network of Libraries of Medicine/ Greater Midwest Region (NNLM/GMR) for providing the Professional Development Award. With this award I was able to attend the WI Health Literacy Summit on April 14 – 15, 2015 as an attendee and a poster presenter to present our work. The overall experience was very rewarding. Conferences like this are good for networking (meeting new professionals and also those whom you already know). And conferences like this are also good for getting new ideas and understanding what is becoming ‘hot’ on your topic. Sometimes it’s also good for confirming things that you already know. Take for example, I attended the “Understanding Adults as Learners: Implications for Fostering Health Literacy” workshop and data from the workshop also supported what we’ve learned from very own project. The data said, “people are more likely to listen to the people they put the most credibility on”. Therefore understanding where people obtain information that is most credible to them can inform planning and development of any health-related programs. In another workshop, the data that was provided also confirmed our findings that “the lower the literacy level, the more likely the person will have poor health”.

Not only was it rewarding to attend workshops, but having an opportunity to present my work was also a very rewarding experience. What really gets me excited about poster presentations is that I get to share my knowledge with other professionals who are just as excited about health literacy as I am. This was my first poster presentation ever, so I can say that it wasn’t as scary as I thought. Presenting a poster is not nearly as nerve-wracking as an oral presentation. Most interactions are with a few people at a time and it’s more conversational in style than when you are standing before a group presenting.

This event was definitely a great experience for me. I saw several different ways in which researchers can organize and present their research. There were many interesting presentations of work and research going on about health literacy. And of course, I benefited from learning how to present my poster and handle sometimes-difficult questions and make connections with future potential project partners.

Technology Improvement Award Improves Patient Care

Monday, January 12th, 2015

By Rachel Sindelar
Health Sciences Librarian
Broadlawns Medical Center Library, Des Moines, IA

I manage the library at a county medical center serving 70% or more low income patients, many with low literacy levels and do not speak English. Wait times for overextended hospital translators is a challenge and so is the lack of mobile technology, plus many hospital rooms do not have computers. The hospital’s Clinical Educator had recognized a disconnect between a patient’s bedside need and access to quality health education materials appropriate for patient reading abilities and native language so I was determined to help. I began promoting library subscription and free foreign language and low literacy level patient education materials to the clinical staff. My efforts were bolstered when our institution became a lucky recipient of a 2014/2015 GMR Technology Improvement Award. (more…)

The Annual Conference of HSLI, November 13-14, 2014

Monday, September 29th, 2014

By Deborah Rhue
Medical Librarian
OSF St. Francis
Peoria, IL

The annual conference of the Health Science Librarians of Illinois (HSLI) will take place November 13-14, 2014, at the Hilton Garden Inn in Champaign, Illinois ( The theme of this year’s conference is Communicate/Advocate.

This year’s featured keynote speaker is Mary Ellen Bates. Mary is the author of seven books and numerous articles on the information industry. She has a MLS from the University of California Berkley and has worked in special libraries for over a decade before starting her own information services business in Colorado. (more…)

Native Voices in Southern Illinois

Sunday, May 18th, 2014

By Fran E. Kovach MLIS AHIP
Reference & Education Librarian
Southern Illinois University School of Medicine
Springfield, IL

NativeAmericansSpeak 007Southern Illinois University School of Medicine Library planned to exhibit at three central Illinois pow wows beginning with the 8th Annual Intertribal Black Horse Pow Wow in Taylorville, Illinois, the 3th Annual Native Americans Speak event at Shore Acres Park in Chillicothe, Illinois, and the 20th Annual Bison Grounds Blessing and Pow Wow at Wildlife Prairie Park, Hanna City, Illinois. Unfortunately, due to flooding near Taylorville, the Black Horse Pow Wow was not attended this year, although we have been invited to the 9th Annual Intertribal Black Horse Pow Wow.WPP2014

The 4 Directions Healing Foundation, based out of Chillicothe, Illinois, is a Native American charitable and educational 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization primarily of American Indian people with diverse tribal backgrounds that sponsored the 3th Annual Native Americans Speak on Aug. 24. A marker to honor Potawatomi Chief Gomo at Shore Acres Park was dedicated by the French Heritage Corridor, Illinois State Historical Society, and Dickson Mounds Museum. Traditional Native storytelling, drum/dance demonstrations, and hands-on Pimiteoui cultural activities followed the dedication ceremony.

NativeAmericansSpeak 002Native Voices: Native Peoples Concepts of Health and Illness, a free iPad app from the National Library of Medicine was shared on an iPad 3. American Indian Health Information, MedlinePlus consumer health information, and NIH Senior Health pamphlets, bookmarks, and pens were distributed from our exhibit booth.

Seven Circles Heritage Center sponsored a blessing ceremony for the bison with their co-sponsor Wildlife Prairie Park, Hanna City, Illinois, on Saturday, April 26th, 2014 at 10am. Two days of native American dancing drumming and singing followed the ceremony. The link below provides more details about the Pow Wow. Pottery and doll making skills were among the traditional activities displayed at this event. Staff from the Wildlife Prairie Park gave talks about some of the wild residents living at the park such as the bison, elk, wolves, and a bald eagle.

April 16th MLA Webcast – GMR Sponsored Sites

Tuesday, March 25th, 2014

Congratulations to the following sites that the GMR is sponsoring for the April 16th webcast: Librarians Collaborating to Produce Systematic Reviews: Project Launch to Publication. Please support the webcast in your area.

IL: University of Illinois at Chicago, Library of the Health Sciences, Chicago (Emily Johnson)
IL: University of Illinois at Chicago Library of the Health Sciences Peoria, Peoria (
IN: Indiana University School of Medicine, Ruth Lilly Library, Indianapolis (
IN: Indiana University School of Medicine Northwest, Center for Medical Education, Gary (Corona Wiley)
IA: Des Moines University Library, Des Moines (Natalie Hutchinson)
IA: University of Iowa, Hardin Library for the Health Sciences, Iowa City (
KY: University of Kentucky, Medical Center Library, Lexington (Susan Foster-Harper)
KY: University of Louisville, Kornhauser Health Sciences Library, Louisville (Vida Vaughn)
MI: Mercy Health Saint Mary’s, Health Sciences Library, Grand Rapids (Mary Hanson)
MI: Wayne State University School of Medicine, Shiffman Medical Library, Detroit (Wendy Wu or Toni Janik)
MN: University of Minnesota, Bio-Medical Library, Minneapolis (Anne Beschnett)
ND: University of North Dakota, Harley E. French Library of the Health Sciences, Fargo (Mary Markland)
ND: University of North Dakota, Library of the Health Sciences, Grand Forks (Theresa Norton)
OH: Cleveland Clinic Alumni Library, Cleveland (Gretchen Hallerberg)
OH: Ohio State University, Health Sciences Library, Columbus (Lynda Hartel)
SD: Wegner Health Science Information Center, Sioux Falls (Molly Youngkin)
WI: Medical College of Wisconsin Libraries, Milwaukee (Karen Hanus)
WI: University of Wisconsin-Madison, Ebling Library for the Health Sciences Health Sciences, Madison ( (more…)

Michael E DeBakey Award Nominations due February 21

Monday, January 13th, 2014

The Michael E. DeBakey Library Services Outreach Award for outstanding service to rural or underserved communities was established by the Friends of the National Library of Medicine (FNLM) to recognize the contributions to medical education and librarianship by Michael E. DeBakey and to honor a practicing health sciences librarian who serves such a community. The deadline for nominations is February 21. Please submit nominations by email to Ronica Lu  ( at or via fax to 301.657.1296.