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Award Report: Extending the Reach: Health Information Resources for Unaffiliated Health Professionals–Rochester Regional Library Council

This project provided awareness and onsite training sessions for nine health agency partners. These agencies were identified as unaffiliated,  i.e., the health professionals working there (nurses, therapists, social workers, and others)  did not have use of the licensed and expensive electronic resources that are available to personnel at many hospitals and universities.

The plan to provide quality resources to these unaffiliated health professionals was developed under an earlier NN/LM MAR Planning Grant.  Under this project, a gateway on the CLIC-on-Health website was created that brought together links to free quality resources available from such sites as:  PubMed/Medline, MedlinePlus, NOVELNY Health Reference Center Academic, NLM Gateway, and the NLM Drug Information Portal.  Resource training including self-guided online tutorials and user guides were developed and made available for use 24/7.  A training program using the resources available from the For Local Health Professionals section on the CLIC-on-Health website were used as a “gateway” to instruct health professionals in the use of free health resources/databases on the web.

Sixteen awareness/training sessions enabled training for 155 participants.  Informational materials were provided for an additional fifty agency partner staff.  This training included the discussion of freely available health resources and access options for this information, including the role of Rochester area libraries.  The majority of training participants reported an increase in their level of awareness of free health information resources and of options for obtaining needed materials.

The project also enabled contact with academic librarians and their School of Nursing Faculty so nursing students would be made aware of the CLIC-on-Health for Local Health Professionals webpage prior to their graduation, as many of them will be employed in agencies that are unaffiliated.

The project was marketed to an extended group of potential users through the creation of a CLIC-on-Health poster/advertisement that is being sent to area libraries, nursing homes, insurance companies, and other health agencies.

Barbara Ciambor
Outreach Librarian
Rochester Regional Library Council

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