Archive for October, 2007
Wednesday, October 31st, 2007
The conference entitled, “Health Literacy: Tools for Improving Health Communications” was held on May 30, 2007. The conference was co-sponsored by the New York Medical College (NYMC) Health Sciences Library (HSL) and School of Public Health (SPH) along with the Northern Metropolitan Hospital Association (NorMet). It was jointly funded by the National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NN/LM) and the New York State Department of Health. The conference goal was to provide health professionals and hospital staff with an educational opportunity to develop awareness of health literacy issues and improve communication skills with individuals throughout the Hudson Valley Region of New York. In fact, the revelant issues and communication skills needed are basic to all health professionals. NN/LM network members, regional health professionals, and individuals from community agencies were encouraged to attend. The expectation was that the conference would serve as a platform from which to develop a regional coalition and be able to draw upon the community building skills already in place among the participants: it did. One outcome was the creation of a health literacy tool kit, which was soon followed by a virtual version. The conference page web now includes the scope and agenda for the conference as well as the tool kit, with new links added as needed http://library.nymc.edu/PHInformatics/hltoolkit.cfm. When the so-called “dancing nurses” video shown by one of the speakers was requested more than 14 times, the link was immediately added to the site: http://www.ahrq.gov/QuestionsAreTheAnswer//.
Attendees rated the conference overall close to excellent by all measures by the end of the day, and post-conference survey evaluations completed July 16, 2007 also generated extremely positive results. Although plans initially estimated 100 likely attendees, the final total was 194 individuals.
Diana J. Cunningham, MLS,MPH- New York Medical College- Health Sciences Library- Valhalla, NY
Friday, October 26th, 2007
The National Library of Medicine has released a new resource focused on dietary supplements. The Dietary Supplements Labels Database http://dietarysupplements.nlm.nih.gov includes information from the labels of over 2,000 brands of dietary supplements in the marketplace, including vitamins, minerals, herbs or other botanicals, amino acids, and other specialty supplements.
The database is designed to help both the general public and health care providers find information about ingredients in brand-name products, including name, form, active and inactive ingredients, amount of active ingredient/unit, manufacturer/distributor information, suggested dose, label claims, warnings, percentage of daily value, and further label information.
Links to other NLM resources, such as MedlinePlus and PubMed, are provided for additional health information. In addition, links to related Fact Sheets from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration ( FDA), Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS), National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM ), and the National Cancer Institute (NCI) are also available.
Wednesday, October 24th, 2007
On Wednesday, October 24th, the Middle Atlantic Region sent over 340 hospital librarians an e-mail message encouraging them to talk with their hospital administrators about MLA’s Health Information Literacy Survey for Hospital Administrators and Health Care.
The Medical Library Association (MLA) in cooperation with the American Hospital Association (AHA) Society for Health Care Advocacy (SHCA) has distributed a Web-based Health Information Literacy Survey to hospital administrators and health care providers throughout the country. The survey will help ascertain administrators’ and health care providers’ awareness and understanding of health information literacy, its value in support of patient care, and the role that librarians and libraries can play in promoting health information literacy. The survey was developed in collaboration with the National Library of Medicine, TAP Consulting, an outside research firm, and MLA’s Health Information Literacy Project Coordinator, Sabrina Kurtz-Rossi.
A non-active copy of the survey is available for review at <http://www.zhost.com/mla/adminLong1.html>
The overall goal of the MLA research project is to increase awareness of health care providers’ knowledge of health information literacy issues as well as the NLM tools and resources for increasing health literacy levels that are available to them and their patients. For an overview of the full project, visit <http://www.mlanet.org/resources/healthlit/hil_project_overview.html>.
If you have questions or need further information, please contact project coordinator Sabrina Kurtz-Rossi, email@example.com.
Tuesday, October 23rd, 2007
The National Network of Libraries of Medicine Middle Atlantic Region exhibited at this year’s Fall New York City School Library Conference at Queens College in New York City. The two-day conference, attended by over 500 school librarians, was an excellent opportunity to show several of NLM’s youth-oriented interactive tutorials, including ToxMystery and ToxTown. Also demonstrated were MedlinePlus for use with parents and caretakers and NLM’s online exhibits for use in the library or classroom.
Miguel Figueroa, Network Services coordinator for the MAR, presented a one-hour program on Friday titled “Prescription for Success: School Librarians and Online Health Information.” Many of the attendees expressed great interest or familiarity with NLM’s products, a reminder that children and schools may be excellent avenues towards improving the health of our communities.
Friday, October 19th, 2007
There are still a few spots left in both workshops. Register for either or both workshops by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org by October 30, 2007.
Outreach Evaluation Workshop Series
The goal of the Outreach Evaluation Workshop Series is to develop the ability of those who conduct health information outreach projects to gather and use evaluation data for program improvement and decision-making. These first two workshops, in a series of four, are being hosted by NN/LM MAR and taught by Susan Barnes and Cindy Olney of the Outreach Evaluation Resource Center, NN/LM Pacific Northwest , University of Washington.
Community Assessment (3 MLA CE credits), 9:00-12:00, November 14, 2007
This workshop will help librarians and others involved in health information outreach to design quality programs and garner support for those programs by taking the right first step: collecting community and needs assessment information about the groups of people who will be involved.
Planning Outcomes-Based Outreach Programs (3 MLA CE credits),
1:00-4:00, November 14, 2007
This workshop will help librarians and anyone interested in health information outreach to focus on what they want to accomplish by designing outreach programs around intended results. Participants will learn to construct logic models to plan health information outreach projects, with project outcomes as the pivotal part of the plan.
Class date: Wednesday, November 14, 2007
Class times: Community Assessment: 9:00-12:00; Planning Outcomes-Based Outreach Programs: 1:00-4:00
Location: New York University, Frederick L. Ehrman Medical Library, 550 First Ave., New York
Registration is free. Class break refreshments and lunch are included for attendees.
Monday, October 15th, 2007
The Health Sciences Library Association of New Jersey (HSLANJ) sponsored a table display at the Organization of Nursing Executives of New Jersey (ONE/NJ) Research Day held on June 22, 2007. This was possible thanks to an exhibit grant awarded to HSLANJ from the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, Middle Atlantic Region. The conference highlighted the results of the statewide Readiness of New Jersey Nurses for Evidence-Based Practice survey. This survey was done to replicate the study conducted by Dr. Diane Pravikoff, who was the keynote speaker that day, and reported on in the September, 2005 issue of the American Journal of Nursing. Health Sciences Librarians were dismayed to read the results of the survey. We discovered that many nurses either did not know there was a library in their hospital or did know and thought it was only available for physician use. HSLANJ considered this conference to be a perfect opportunity to speak with nurses regarding what is available to them through NN/LM MAR, the National Library of Medicine and their own hospital libraries and librarians.
More than 100 members of ONE/NJ attended the conference and stopped by our table display. HSLANJ members Michelle Brewer, Jeannine Creazzo, Robb Mackes, Patti May, Erica Moncrief, Jenny Pierce, Lia Sabbagh, Robin Siegel and Jan Skica staffed the table, answered questions and gave out bookmarks with contact information stickers attached so that the attendees would know how to reach the librarian at their institution. Laptop computers were used to demonstrate the various databases that are available to New Jersey’s hospital libraries via the National Library of Medicine, HSLANJ’s Group Purchasing program and the New Jersey State Library.
Additional handouts included Fact Sheets created by HSLANJ members describing the evidence-based nursing resources available for demonstration at the booth. These included CINAHL, Joanna Briggs Institute, Mosby’s Nursing Consult, EBSCO’s Nursing and Allied Health Collection and Biomedical Reference Collection, National Guideline Clearinghouse and the Cochrane Library.
In addition, the HSLANJ exhibitors participated in the Research Day ‘breakout sessions’, that were part of the conference. The nine health sciences librarians each worked with one breakout group of nurse executives. Together, we created working documents for use by ONE/NJ that developed strategies for improvement in New Jersey of evidence-based nursing research and practice in the hospital setting, and for the improvement of nurses’ knowledge of, access and use of hospital library services and evidence-based information resources.
The entire day gave us a wonderful opportunity to interact with nursing executives from around the state. It was gratifying to hear so many of them express how much they appreciate all the work their hospital librarians do for them. We hope that HSLANJ can be involved in the ONE/NJ Research Day again next year, on an even bigger scale.
Robin Siegel- Health Sciences Library Association of NJ and CentraState HealthCare System- Freehold, NJ
Monday, October 15th, 2007
Holy Name Hospital is currently undergoing a construction project. The Hospital is currently building a new Emergency Room, Conference Center and Library. The new Library will combine both the Bartholomew Medical Library and School of Nursing Library catalogs, and will be open to the public. Prior to moving the Library, we are automating the Library’s technical operations: cataloging; circulation; serials control using an integrated Library system. Each of these operations is currently done manually. Automation of the card catalog will allow for patrons to access our catalog from any PC and will allow for easier and less labor-intensive updating. Automation of the circulation processes will allow for better tracking of circulated items, for improved report generation and for tracking of utilization patterns that will help in acquisitions. A serials component will facilitate the checking in and claiming of journal subscriptions, indexing journal articles and linking to them, as well as hopefully tracking interlibrary loans.
Keydi Boss- Holy Name Hospital- Teaneck, NJ
Monday, October 15th, 2007
The AECOM Library is in the midst of a major renovation. An integral part of this project was the construction of five group study rooms. Each of these rooms is equipped with a 42″ LCD monitor. The rooms are available to all members of the AECOM community for student group projects, PhD dissertation defense, library training, presentations and meetings. With funding from the NN/LM MAR Technology Improvement Award, the Library purchased three Dell Latitude D630 laptop computers, which can be borrowed from the Library’s Circulation Desk. The laptops connect easily to the LCD monitors with a VGA cable. They have been loaded with the following software: Microsoft Office 2003, Adobe Acrobat Reader, Internet Explorer, Firefox, SciFinder Scholar, QuickTime, RealPlayer, and Windows Media Player. The AECOM Library’s laptop lending policy can be viewed at http://library.aecom.yu.edu/library/laptops.htm. There is a record for the laptops in the Library’s catalog, which allows patrons to see if laptops are available for loan.
When laptops are returned, Circulation Desk staff will be able to restore them to their original configuration using Ghost 12.0 software (also purchased through the NN/LM MAR technology Improvement Award). This will prevent system changes, viruses, and other “infelicities” from being passed on to future users.
The AECOM Graphic Arts Center designed special decals for us. These decals are affixed to the tops of the laptops with an extremely strong adhesive. The hope is that in addition to “branding,” the decals will serve as an additional theft deterrent.
The laptops will go into service in October as part of our celebration of National Medical Librarians Month. Response from patrons who have helped test them has been positive. Although many of our patrons own their own laptops, they do not always carry them. They appreciate the option of borrowing one from the library.
The UPS Project
During the past four years the AECOM Library has experienced three major power outages. The first was the blackout that affected the Northeast in August 2003. The second, in March 2007, was due to an electrical fire in our building. The third, in August 2007, was due to another fire in front of our building. Because the Library’s web sever and EZproxy remote access server were not connected to a UPS (battery backup power supply), these electrical outages caused them to power off without going through the proper shutdown procedures. Fortunately this did not lead to data loss or corruption. AECOM faculty, students, staff and residents from our five affiliated hospitals use the Library’s web site and remote access system to connect to our electronic resources. In order to protect our servers in the future, the electricity in the Library’s server room was switched to the emergency ground, so they will automatically receive power from the College’s emergency generators in the event of another power failure. Because there could still be an interruption of power before the emergency generators kick in, the library used the NN/LM MAR Technology Award to purchase an APC Smart-UPS 1000XL backup battery supply. The Smart-UPS 100XL will supply electricity to the Library’s servers during this gap. Additional software was purchased to allow the servers to power down gracefully in the event that power is not restored. this software has not yet been configured.
Nancy R. Glassman- D. Samuel Gottesman Library- Albert Einstein College of Medicine-Bronx, NY
Monday, October 15th, 2007
Last January when the NN/LM technology grant applications were made available, I looked around at my library and knew we needed to upgrade. The library had 4 PCs and 2 printers for the patrons, all situated in an open desk setting, no privacy, and no room and just not comfortable.
The problem is how does one begin? Well, I guess the answer to that is read the directions. I read and reread the grant application form, wrote a draft, re-wrote the draft, then I sat in my library and stared. New computers would be grand but where would they go if we would have to reconfigure the library. We will need furniture to put the additional PC’s on and along with new furniture we would need hard wiring to connect into the hospital network. This was beginning to seem like an amazing task but I was determined to push ahead.
To get the ball rolling the first thing I did was to set up a meeting with our Chief Medical Officer, my Administrator, to discuss the need, finances and process of the library reorganization. I outlined the need citing the increasing number of books, journals and knowledge-based web sites available online, requests of the library patrons for more computers, as well as HIPAA for privacy noting the closeness of the existing work areas. Dr. Dhuper was very supportive and agreed with the need to modernize our library facility. He suggested I contact finance to review the library budget, then to our Hospital Information Systems Dept, regarding the computer equipment and wiring; then to the VP of Materials Management for new furniture; basically organize a team.
The budget review was not as traumatic as anticipated because the previous librarian had the foresight to create a special library fund. In this fund, all of the overdue fine monies; book sale monies and any financial gifts given to the library had been set aside.
Next I contacted our IS Dept, and told them what we would like to accomplish, how much money was potentially available through the grant and asked them to provide a quotation for the appropriate equipment and wiring. My contact in the IS Dept. was very helpful and made sound recommendations, ultimately figuring we could order 5 new Pentium PC’s with all the trimmings and two printers.
Armed with the information, I contacted the VP of Materials Management. He arranged a meeting with the vendor. The furniture was costly, however; it will provide a comfortable, quiet, private working space. Now the question, if the grant does not come through and I order the new furniture, I won’t have money for new computers. After much deliberation I decided to proceed with the new furniture, worse come to worse we will set up the old computers in the carrels and at least provide a good working space for our patrons until finances become available to purchase new computers. So, the decision was made, we ordered the furniture, contacted the engineering dept, regarding wiring and installation and kept our fingers crossed.
The final step was to complete the grant application, with all of the supporting documentation requested and wait. The furniture arrived and was being assembled, when the great news came! We got the grant. The PCs and printers were ordered ASAP… the boxes began to arrive.
Finally, all was set and now we are planning our ribbon cutting for Septmeber 25, 2007, in the meantime our libary patrons are thrilled. We noted that the library is busier than prior to our update. We are keeping a record and the number of PC users has substantially increased. The noise level in the library is down in spite of the increase number of users; this was an unanticipated positive outcome. We figure since the carrels provide more individual work space there is less conversation.
The success of our new set up is tremendous and has been met with much enthusiasm and gratitude. Our administration is so pleased with the outcome they are considering increasing the number of carrels and changing the self-study room. Many of the residents and medical students have made a special effort to say thank you to the library staff. So now, the very last thing for me to do is say thank you, to the NN/LM for providing the inspiration and resources to start the project; to our Administrator for supporting the library and finally to all those who had a hand in the implementation of our reorganization.
Laraine Tursi- Harold Fink Memorial Library- Coney Island Hospital- Brooklyn, NY
Monday, October 15th, 2007
On October 11, 2007, the National Library of Medicine (NLM) released a new search engine for MedlinePlus, MedlinePlus en español and the NLM Web site. NLM selected search engine software from the Pittsburgh-based company Vivisimo®. Vivisimo is also the current search solution for the www.usa.gov site (formerly FirstGov).
The new search results feature enhanced relevance rankings and bold-face search words in context to help you select the best Web document for your query. An integrated spell checker suggests alternative search terms and spelling corrections. The new search engine also expands queries using synonyms specific to the sites and medical synonyms from the NLM Unified Medical Language System®.
The default display for MedlinePlus searches is a comprehensive list of “All Results” from all areas of the site. Users can also focus their search on one part of MedlinePlus by navigating to these individual collections of results:
- Health Topics
- External Health Links
- Drugs and Supplements
- Medical Encyclopedia
- Other Resources
For MedlinePlus searches that retrieve one of the 700+ English language health topics, the relevant topic is spotlighted at the top of the screen with an image, an excerpt of the health topic summary and links to the topic.
Read more about the new search engine:
*New Site Search Engine Allows Easier, More Efficient Navigation of MedlinePlus and NLM Web Site
*NLM Technical Bulletin, Sep-Oct 2007, NLM Launches New Web Search Engine: NLM Web Site, MedlinePlus, MedlinePlus Español