Small Projects Award Report- “My Medication’s List”
The training in the use of the Medications List software proved to enhance the library’s health literacy programming. The trainings, which took place at the library’s Central/headquarters, five adult learning centers (Astoria, Central, Peninsula, Rochdale, Long Island City) and the Queens Village Community Library (which has a large Senior Citizen population and where the Community Library Manager coordinates outreach to senior citizen centers throughout Queens), was held during the month’s of September 2008 through February 2009.
Queens Borough Public Library’s Adult Learning Staff (teachers) and Branch Managers that have a large senior citizen population have incorporated the project “My Medication List” into their workshops on health literacy. Ensuring that individuals understand the importance of listing the medications prescribed to them and their family members. Software that makes it easy to access a database of information, and a combined workshop that includes a medical librarian is of immeasurable value to a community.
As the debate over healthcare reform continues to take place, individuals need to have credible information to make informed decisions when speaking with medical professionals. It is not always easy and can be intimidating for immigrants/non-English Speakers and senior citizens. There are language barriers, time constraints (especially when the doctor is the local health clinic or hospital emergency room). The ability to provide comprehensive information and have a detailed discussion can be one of the keys to reducing health costs. When understanding why a medication is given for a particular illness and what other medications may contraindicate another, can cut down on the costs to a hospital and empowers individuals to take greater control over their own health and ensure the health of their family members.
Queens Library- Jamaica, NY