As we’ve started our new five year contract our Communities of Interest have been shaping their plans for the year. The Communities of Interest are established to engage those interested in learning about issues and trends that affect libraries and health care institutions. We are calling these broad issues Focus Areas.
NER programs in instruction or funding outreach throughout the region will address issues related to a particular Focus Area. COIs will also be involved in reviewing and scoring funding opportunities related to their focus area. Below are (once more) the focus areas and a brief description.
The idea of Communities of Interest is to learn together so that information providers can reflect and respond to changes and trends affecting their users and customers.
Communities of Interest will develop dynamically: folks may want to participate actively in shaping COI programs and learning sessions or participate by attending sessions and providing input as you can. Librarians and others can participate in more than one Community of Interest, there’s lots to learn. You can participate by assisting in developing a program or participate by showing up and contributing to the discussion.
COI Leaders have been enlisted to lead the direction of discussion, encourage input, and communicate with COI participants. Leaders may work with a core group of COI participants to plan learning programs or review funding proposals. NER Coordinators work closely with Leaders to provide resources and help in identifying areas of learning. Communities of Interest (COIs) can submit program proposals for all day programs to be organized for the region. Your COI Leaders for Healthy Communities and Health Literacy have already introduced themselves!
Many of you have already enlisted in a COI by subscribing to the appropriate emailing list via our Constant Contact email system. To receive those mailings you can go to the NER news subscription system.
Health Care Workforce: This focus area is concerned with issues and trends related to the composition, distribution, preparation, and ongoing development of students and professionals in the health care setting. The Health Care Workforce area examines the information needs of diverse health care professionals, the education levels for health care certification, the expansion of health care access in rural and metropolitan areas, cultural competency in health care, among many other issues.
Healthy Communities: This focus area relates to approaches in community-based problem solving that address local health care issues. These problems or issues are usually related to preventive medicine, healthy lifestyle and behavior choices. Healthy Communities are based on a broader definition of health than previously considered, understanding common values and developing a shared vision and ownership of problem solving approaches.
Health Literacy: This theme deals with the communication of information and the critical literacy skills needed for personal and community empowerment. Promoting health literacy involves fostering new skills for health sciences librarians moving beyond acquiring a basic understanding of health literacy issues.
HealthIT: The HealthIT theme is concerned with the dramatic changes affecting health care by the mandated adoption of an Electronic Health Record (EHR). These changes are widespread and affect hospitals, large and small practices, and those state system offices charged with establishing its infrastructure.
eScience: This focus area will continue to explore the expansion of library services to include the management, curation, and dissemination of locally produced data sets resulting from large and small scale research. eScience describes the collaboration among computationally intensive science disciplines that create data sets that are captured, transported, stored, organized, accessed, mined, visualized, and interpreted in order to extract knowledge.
We are excited about the Region’s Communities of Interest. We hope you are too!