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Changes and more changes at the GMR web site



The good news is all the useful stuff is still there, now easier to find!

The National Network of Libraries of Medicine has been finishing its web site migration to the Drupal platform over the past year.  The GMR site (part of the domain) was migrated at the end of April, 2015.  Since then we have gradually been tweaking it to replace functionality that was lost in the migration and to make our site easier and more intuitive to use.  You may have noticed some of the bigger changes, such as the new Materials Order Form ( and the slide show on the front page.  We have also been doing some consolidation, shifting, and renaming.  So, for example, if you’re looking for materials for library advocacy, you’ll find them now under Member Services/Library Advocacy instead of Member Services/Promoting Your Library.  We’ve also been experimenting with the menus, adding popup tool tips on some for clarity.

One of the biggest changes this year has been in the Training and Education section of our site.  Lake Effects and Tech Talks now reside under the GMR Offerings, which replaced “GMR Classes” and has been reorganized with a more task oriented focus.  Along the same lines, the Educational Resources page has been reorganized and renamed Guides and Tutorials. Take a spin around the evolving site!  We hope you like the changes.

As always, feel free to send us feedback, through the site’s feedback form ( or via email (

NN/LM GMR Director’s Post, January 2016

Elegy and Exit Strategy

Health Science librarians set a high bar for continual improvement in our information practice. We celebrate innovation; we promote change; we monitor our environments; we enhance, fine tune and refine our services; we set and achieve our goals all day, every day. Whether we work in hospitals or universities, we value our contributions and nurture the values that give purpose and meaning to our service on behalf of education, clinical care, discovery, and progress in overcoming disease.

Why are we so dedicated to our mission? The reason is that our efforts are important; even institutional improvements or an individual’s ability to manage wellness or recovery in a more knowledgeable way are significant outcomes. Our efforts to inform, provide access, and educate are meaningful, both to the individuals we empower and the milieu in which they exist. What we do is worth it.

Sometimes change happens, whether we engineer it or not. At my institution, the medical school is reorganizing its regional programs, which directly affects our regional library services to the same communities. The launch of a new medical school in the state changed the formula, the environment, and the delivery of medical education, and by extension, our delivery of health sciences library services. Read the rest of this entry »

GMR Tech Talk Summary: Emerging Technology in Libraries

Last Friday, January 29, we had the first GMR Tech Talk of 2016, with presentations from three guest speakers, each charged with sharing two of their favorite new or emerging technologies. The recording, here, is also linked from the GMR Tech Talks page. MLA CE credit will be available until February 28.

Our first guest speaker, Trisha Adamus, focused on ORCID, the open source PID (Person IDentifier), and ImpactStory, a tool for exploring and sharing the impact of research. Although ImpactStory is open source, it has begun charging for membership. But Trisha offered some encouraging tips for access and use. ORCID, on the other hand, is well supported by an independent non-profit member organization, and already has successful international integration. Because it is non-proprietary, there are no issues with data availability.

Peter Murray introduced us to the world of iBeacons, part of the communication technology that mobile apps use to offer users more personalized experiences. After showing us the great side of iBeacons, Peter delved into the privacy issues related to this Bluetooth technology. Peter also spoke about the Digital Public Library of America, and the unexpected new ways it is changing the way libraries connect their content.

Our final speaker, Jenny Emmanuel Taylor, showed us RefMe and ManuscriptsApp.  RefMe is a citation management app, for Apple and Android devices, that uses of the phone’s camera to scan books to gather citation data. ManuscriptsApp is a new app available for Macintosh computers that automatically formats your manuscript for the scholarly journal you select.

We want to thank our guest speakers, Trisha Adamus, Peter Murray, and Jenny Emmanuel Taylor for their great presentations and for taking the time to share their knowledge of emerging technologies in the library world. If you didn’t have a chance to join us, be sure to watch the recorded video!

Zika Virus in MeSH and on Resource Guides

It is predicted that the Zika virus will spread deep into the United States.  National Institutes of Heath (NIH) director included a powerful map by Kramer, et al (2015) on the NIH Director’s Blog at:

This virus has been known for a long time, but its apparent dangerous effects have only very recently come to light.  The National Library of Medicine (NLM) has taken two immediate steps to help address this threat. First, in a rare move, PubMed has immediately added two new terms to MeSH:

Because these terms are so new, search PubMed using zika[tw] to catch citations with the new MeSH headings, older articles on this topic, and to exclude citations by authors named Zika.

Second, an incident Web page was by the created by the NLM Disaster Information Management Research Center to gather resources on the emerging health issues arising from the Zika Virus:

This resource list links to a variety of sources such as:

  • Local, state, federal and international agencies and organizations
  • Database searches for the health information issues around the incidents
  • Focused resources for pregnant women and for health care providers
  • Social media resources for situational awareness

Read the rest of this entry »

New FDA Database: AccessGUDID

What’s new? The FDA Global Unique Device Identification Database

Medical devices cover a wide range of products, from implants, CT scanners and surgical instruments to contact lenses, wheelchairs and blood glucose tests. Currently, very few medical devices  have a unique identifier that clearly distinguishes one product from another. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Center for Devices and Radiological Health (CDRH), has developed a Unique Device Identifiers (UDI) system, standardizing the identification of medical devices from distribution to patient use.

The Global Unique Device Identification Database (GUDID – pronounced “Good ID”) contains information submitted to the FDA on medical devices that have Unique Device Identifiers (UDI). Use AccessGUDID ( to search for specific medical devices. You can also download some or all of the GUDID data. Read the rest of this entry »

Libraries can tackle today’s challenges!

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. Read the rest of this entry »

Simply Elegant Evaluation: Sometimes Less is More

Exhibiting at conferences has been a mainstay of outreach for the staffs of the eight regional offices for the National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NN/LM). You may have seen GMR staff at your state or health sciences library conference or the Midwest Chapter Medical Library association annual fall conference. If you were at the 2015 Chapter meeting in Louisville, KY, perhaps you answered a few questions about why you stopped at the GMR booth.

The NN/LM Outreach Evaluation Resource Center (OERC), who helped develop the point-of-contact questionnaire used at the booth, has posted a blog article on the development of and results from the Quick Tap Survey administered at the GMR booth. Follow this link to find out what we learned:

Success in a Learning Garden

In 2015, the GMR sent out a Call for Applications (CFA) for a variety of awards, including the Community Engagement Award. One of the more interesting responsibilities I have as the Outreach, Planning, and Evaluation Coordinator for the GMR is to review proposals as they come in to the office for potential funding. Elkhart General Hospital’s proposal for a Seed to Feed Learning Garden ( is one of the more interesting–and successful!–awards that the GMR has funded.

Take a look at the most informative article that was posted in Beacon Health’s newsletter, The Beam Not only has the garden provided an opportunity for librarian Lori Harding of the Medical Library to help train clinical staff in “databases, books, journals and websites containing evidence-based resources and recipes to help educate patients on nutrition,” but 260 pounds of fresh vegetables from the garden were shared with local food pantries! Not many medical libraries can lay claim to that accomplishment.

Changes in Regional Advisory Council Membership

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. Read the rest of this entry »

Funding Awardees for Option Year 4

Congratulations to GMR funding awardees for Option Year 4, May 2015 to April 2016.

Each of these projects is unique. There are examples of collaborations where public libraries work with academic researchers, university libraries work with nursing faculty, and libraries work with other libraries toward an educational event. For two of the projects, hospital librarians work with others to connect consumers to the information they need. The environment and projects of the Technology Improvement Awards are varied with a dental school library, a university that focuses on integrative health care, a community college, and an area health education center.

We encourage you to learn more about these projects by following the links to details for each award group. Read the rest of this entry »