A study released today suggests that hospitals, government departments, associations and other organisations involved in healthcare gain a $9 return for every dollar they invest in health libraries.
Health Libraries Inc (HLInc) and Health Libraries Australia (ALIA HLA, a national group of the Australian Library and Information Association) commissioned award-winning firm SGS Economics and Planning to survey health libraries across the nation and from this to assess the return on the annual investment in these services to their organisations.
The results provide a snapshot of the continued outstanding value of health libraries against a backdrop of significantly greater usage but declining investment. Patient and medical staff numbers and hospital expenditure are increasing, while health library budgets, space and staffing levels are decreasing. HLInc chair Jane Edwards and ALIA HLA convener Ann Ritchie said, “The investment in library and information services is small in the scheme of things just 0.1% of recurrent expenditure in Australian hospitals. The report suggests that a modest increase in spending would allow for significant incremental benefits.”
The indicative finding of $9 for every $1 invested is likely to be even higher. SGS assessed the benefits provided directly to health library users, including time saved and value of “out-of-pocket” expenses such as journal subscriptions. However, the user focus of the study omitted the return on investment in terms of patient care, and SGS said “it is highly likely that the benefits of industry libraries outweigh their costs considerably.”
This economic value assessment supports the findings of the ALIA/HLInc Questions of Life and Death, an investigation into the value of health library and information services report, published last year. Library and information service users were asked how they believed their use of the service over the last year had helped them 83% said it had helped them improve health outcomes for their patients and 76%//said it had changed their thinking and improved their diagnosis or treatment plan.
The full report Worth every cent and more: an independent assessment of the return on investment of health libraries in Australia with supporting materials: http://www.alia.org.au/news/2124/australian-health-libraries-return-investment
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http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi?DOI=10.1002%2Fasi.23101 (subscription required)
Data collected by social media platforms have been introduced as new sources for indicators to help measure the impact of scholarly research in ways that are complementary to traditional citation analysis. Data generated from social media activities can be used to reflect broad types of impact. This article aims to provide systematic evidence about how often Twitter is used to disseminate information about journal articles in the biomedical sciences. The analysis is based on 1.4 million documents covered by both PubMed and Web of Science and published between 2010 and 2012.
The number of tweets containing links to these documents was analyzed and compared to citations to evaluate the degree to which certain journals, disciplines, and specialties were represented on Twitter and how far tweets correlate with citation impact. With less than 10% of PubMed articles mentioned on Twitter, its uptake is low in general but differs between journals and specialties. Correlations between tweets and citations are low, implying that impact metrics based on tweets are different from those based on citations. A framework using the coverage of articles and the correlation between Twitter mentions and citations is proposed to facilitate the evaluation of novel social-media-based metrics.
Provide feedback on the Core Competencies for Public Health Professionals (Core Competencies; http://www.phf.org/programs/corecompetencies) and help shape the future of the public health workforce. The Council on Linkages Between Academia and Public Health Practice (Council on Linkages; http://www.phf.org/programs/council) is currently reviewing and revising the Core Competencies to ensure that these competencies keep pace with changes in the field of public health and continue to reflect the skills needed by public health professionals. As part of this process, the Council on Linkages is seeking feedback from the public health community. Multiple opportunities to provide feedback exist, including through an online feedback form (http://www.phf.org/competenciesfeedback). Feedback will be accepted through December 2013. To learn more about the review and revision process and other ways to provide feedback, please visit the Core Competencies review and revision process webpage (http://www.phf.org/competencies)
Kathleen Amos, MLIS
Project Manager, Council on Linkages Between Academia and Public Health Practice
Public Health Foundation
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http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi?DOI=10.1002%2Fasi.22988 (requires subscription)
This paper examines how scientists working in government agencies in the U.S. are reacting to the “ethos of sharing” government-generated data. For scientists to leverage the value of existing government data sets, critical data sets must be identified and made as widely available as possible. However, government data sets can only be leveraged when policy makers first assess the value of data, in much the same way they decide the value of grants for research outside government.
We argue that legislators should also remove structural barriers to interoperability by funding technical infrastructure according to issue clusters rather than administrative programs. As developers attempt to make government data more accessible through portals, they should consider a range of other nontechnical constraints attached to the data. We find that agencies react to the large number of constraints by mostly posting their data on their own websites only rather than in data portals that can facilitate sharing. Despite the nontechnical constraints, we find that scientists working in government agencies exercise some autonomy in data decisions, such as data documentation, which determine whether or not the data can be widely shared. Fortunately, scientists indicate a willingness to share the data they collect or maintain. However, we argue further that a complete measure of access should also consider the normative decisions to collect (or not) particular data.
The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) released the following reports that may be of interest:
Hurricane Sandy Relief: Improved Guidance on Designing Internal Control Plans Could Enhance Oversight of Disaster Funding. GAO-14-58, November 26: http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-58
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/660/659238.pdf
National Preparedness: Actions Taken by FEMA to Implement Select Provisions of the Post-Katrina Emergency Management Reform Act of 2006. GAO-14-99R, November 26: http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-99R
The latest issue of the Journal of eScience Librarianship (JESLIB) has just been published! It is available at http://escholarship.umassmed.edu/jeslib/vol2/iss2/.
Table of Contents
Volume 2, Issue 2 (2013)
Re-thinking Our Professional Identity in Light of New Responsibilities / Elaine R. Martin
Common Errors in Ecological Data Sharing / Karina E. Kervin, William K. Michener, and Robert B. Cook
Opportunities and Barriers for Librarians in Exploring Data: Observations from the Data Curation Profile Workshops / Jake R. Carlson
The Political Economy of Federally Sponsored Data / Bart Ragon
E-Science in Action
Gathering Feedback from Early-Career Faculty: Speaking with and Surveying Agricultural Faculty Members about Research Data / Sarah C. Williams
Building an eScience Thesaurus for Librarians: A Collaboration Between the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, New England Region and an Associate Fellow at the National Library of Medicine / Kevin Read, Andrew T. Creamer, Donna Kafel, Robert J. Vander Hart, and Elaine R. Martin
Thoughts on “eResearch”: a Scientist’s Perspective / Amanda L. Whitmire
Are you interested in submitting to JESLIB? Please refer to author guidelines at http://escholarship.umassmed.edu/jeslib/styleguide.html
Elaine R. Martin, Editor, and the Editorial Team Journal of eScience Librarianship
Presenter: Kate Flewelling, Outreach Coordinator, NN/LM MAR
Where: Free, Online
Dates: February 6 – 20, 2014
Three required webinars:
- Thursday, Feb. 6, 2014: 10 – 11 am (ET) / Common Mistakes and Finding Funding
- Thursday, Feb. 13, 2014: 10 – 11 am (ET) / The Proposal
- Thursday, Feb. 20, 204: 10 – 11 am (ET) / The Budget and Finishing Touches
Summary: Designed for beginning grant proposal writers, this class presents a general overview of the grant and funding processes as well as the level of detail required in a successful proposal. Each component of the grant writing process will be addressed, including: documenting the need; identifying the target population; writing measurable objectives; developing a work plan, an evaluation plan and dissemination plan.
The course will consist of three-1 hour Adobe Connect webinars and a planning assignment. Participants who complete all requirements will be eligible for 4 MLA CE.
All of us in MAR would like to wish you and your families a very Happy Thanksgiving!
- Barbara Epstein, Renae Barger, Michelle Burda, Sue Burke, Lydia Collins, Kate Flewelling, Missy Harvey, and Tristan Lucchetti