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Supporting Effective Systematic Reviews

Assako N. Holyoke
St. Louis University
St. Louis, Missouri

The Professional Development Award I received from the NN/LM MCR allowed me to attend “Systematic Review Workshop: The Nuts and Bolts for Librarians,” in October 2013 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. My experience was very positive and I have been able to use this training to more effectively support the execution of systematic review research for my liaison departments’ faculty, residents, and students. Learn more about the workshop here.

systematic review cloud

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Library Support for Researchers

This article provides a recap of what the NN/LM MCR has done to help librarians become better informed about methods to support researchers at their institution and discusses current initiatives devoted to supporting e-science (big data, data curation/management, and cyber infrastructure). It also discusses a research question being addressed by the MCR’s Library Support for Researchers Advisory Group. The article ends with a description of resources that can help librarians become more knowledgeable about e-science and provide guidance on starting an e-science program at your library.


For several years the MCR has conducted activities with the intent of helping Network members be better able to support the researchers at their institutions. In 2012, we hosted an in-person workshop providing an introduction to e-science with many Network members in attendance. This was followed later, by a webinar discussion about the librarian’s role in supporting e-science efforts at their academic institution. The webinar resulted in an article, written by Claire Hamasu, Barb Jones, and Betsy Kelly, titled, “Discussing ‘eScience and the Evolution of Library Services,” which was published in the Journal of eScience Librarianship. Read more »

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Whooo Says…

Dear Whooo,

I’m a hospital librarian in a medium sized community hospital. As part of the “baby boomer” generation, I plan to retire within the next few years. I’ve been watching the hospital trend of closing libraries, or not replacing professional librarians when the current librarian retires or leaves. I’m very concerned that this could happen in my case. I try to let my manager know how involved I am in the operations of the hospital, and the impact I have on the goals of the hospital, but I’m still worried that the management team doesn’t consider my position essential. What should I do?

Concerned in Kansas Read more »

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Promoting My Library:

or How a New Librarian Can Get Involved!

Angela Spencer
St. Luke’s Hospital
Chesterfield, Missouri

As a new staff member at St. Luke’s Hospital in Chesterfield, Missouri, I have been trying to market the library. Here are a few of the things I have done:

  • Had the graphics department redo my brochure and then distributed to floors
  • Got involved in committees – Institutional Review Board (IRB), Evidence Based Practice (EBP)
  • Went to tumor board, grand rounds, stroke conference, etc.
  • Asked various departments if I could talk at their staff meeting and tell them about library services
  • Published articles in the hospital newsletter
  • Went to morning report and supported the residents in finding articles
  • Put brochures in the physician’s lounge
  • Sent links to articles of interest to key people

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Clendening History of Medicine Library

Dawn McInnis
University of Kansas Medical Center
Kansas City, Kansas


The Clendening History of Medicine Library was named after Dr. Logan Clendening, whose collection of historical medical books formed the nucleus of the library. After graduating from the Kansas University medical school in 1907 with the second graduating class, he took post-graduate courses at Harvard and in Chicago, and in 1909 joined a private practice. That same year, in addition to publishing his first medical article, he was asked to travel with a Kansas City group on a European tour as their guest and private physician. These trips and writing continued through 1911, when he took time to attend some additional medical courses in London, Berlin, and Edinburgh, locations steeped in the history of medicine. For someone who was known to live life to the fullest, these opportunities had to influence his intellectual curiosity and continued writing. Read more »

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In This Issue:

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something to know a bit about

Have you heard about this…this altmetrics (short for alternative assessment metrics or alternative metrics) business? We know it has to be important because it is one of the topics for the Chapter Sharing Roundtables at this year’s Medical Library Association Conference. We know it might even be super important because it is right at the top of the list of 25 topics being discussed. It beat out Building a Network of Partners, which came in second, followed by Consumer Health, Copyright Issues, and Embedded Librarians. Wow!

altmetrics word cloud

Why is it a good idea for librarians to pay attention to altmetrics to at least a level of understanding where we can carry on an intelligent conversation with a…Altmetricologist (fyi, not a real word…yet)? We hope that by reading through the rest of this article and following the links to some websites, you’ll be able to determine for yourself if this is something you need to add to your Things-To-Know-More-About list. Read more »

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Becker Library’s Archives and Rare Books

at the Washington University School of Medicine

Elisabeth Brander
Bernard Becker Medical Library
St. Louis, Missouri
Stephen Logsdon
Bernard Becker Medical Library
St. Louis, Missouri

The Archives and Rare Books at the Bernard Becker Medical Library of the Washington University School of Medicine serves as a continuing resource providing information services to faculty, staff, and students as well as visiting researchers, scholars, and the general public. The library’s rare book holdings consist of some 20,000 volumes spread across nine distinct collections. Some of these collections are general in scope, and contain works on a wide variety of medical topics, while others are focused on a specific subject. Altogether, the Becker’s rare book collections cover the past 500 years of medical history, and contain several landmarks in medical publication including the first and second editions of Andreas Vesalius’ De humani corporis fabrica, Siegfried Albinus’ monumental Tabulae sceleti et musculorum corporis humani, with its superb copperplate engravings, and the first American edition of Henry Gray’s Anatomy, descriptive and surgical.

Copperplate engraving from Cowper’s ‘Myotomia reformata’. William Cowper (1666-1709). Myotomia reformata, or an anatomical treatise on the muscles of the human body illustrated with figures after the life. London: Printed for Robert Knaplock . . ., William & John Innes, and Jacob Tonson, 1724. (Plate XII) Copper engraving.

The medical school began to collect rare books in 1912, when it purchased the library of Professor Walter Pagel, Professor of Medicine at the University of Berlin. This initial purchase was followed by the acquisition of Dr. John Green’s collection of 19th century books on ophthalmology and otology, and, in 1916, the purchase of Frank J. Lutz’s collection of early printed medical works. These books are now the basis of the Becker’s Classics of Medicine and Monuments of Medicine collection. The Classics of Medicine contains works from the late 15th century up to 1820 while Monuments, the largest of the individual collections, holds books from 1820 to the mid-20th century. These two collections, which hold works by both major and less well-known medical authors, form the core of the Becker’s rare book holdings. Read more »

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The Librarian: Rounding to Be Lean

Lean— “A management system that focusses upon value (from the customer/patient’s point of view) and elimination of waste, making it easy to do the right thing by focusing on improving processes.” (Luca Boi, MHA, University of Utah Health Care Value Engineer.)

Developed by Toyota in the 1900s, Lean was first adopted by manufacturers but is now practiced in many sectors of our society including government, education, service organizations, and healthcare. The University of Utah Health Care is integrating Lean throughout the organization. To build skill levels, staff was invited to submit a problem, learn the process and apply Lean to the problem. Four sessions of “The Physician Leader/Health Sciences Leader: Lean Education Program” were run in 2013. Faculty from Spencer S. Eccles Health Sciences Library participated in three of the sessions working on different projects.

Addressing value and elimination of waste should have a financial impact on the organization. Could Lean be used to determine the financial impact of the librarian on patient care? I submitted a problem to find out. This was a fast track learn and do program that started in September 2013 with training and ended in December 2013 with a presentation on the project. Read more »

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