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Communities of Interest

The NN/LM New England Region’s Communities of Interest (COI) foster emerging roles for librarians in dynamic themes in the provision of health information.  Members of Communities of Interests share ideas, knowledge, and experiences to help each other improve their library’s services.  The Communities of Interest focus on six themes:  eScience, Healthcare Workforce, Health Literacy, Healthy Communities, HealthIT, and Knowledge Management.  These themes were identified by the NN/LM New England Region at a Town Hall Meeting as priorities for professional development and collaboration. 

Professional Development and Collaboration

COI’s host e-learning programs to keep Network Members up-to-date with trends in the profession.  The annual COI Day brings Network Members together to network, dialogue and create partnerships.  COIs offer the opportunity to cultivate skills through group projects.  For example, members from the Health Literacy COI formed a working group to plan and offer Health Literacy Missouri’s Clear Conversations Program in their community. The Healthy Communities COI offered a webinar on How to Create an Effective Health Information Handout, and provided the opportunity for participants to share and critique their handouts. Sign up for our COI listservs to connect with librarians and other health information providers with similar professional interests. Information how to sign up is on each individual COI page.

How to Get Involved

Dynamic Themes

  • eScience refers to the integration of IT in the scientific research process that results in the creation of digital data that can be shared, analyzed and potentially reused to further scientific discovery. The focus of e-Science librarianship is developing innovative library based services that support effective management and stewardship of scientific data in the life and physical sciences. Librarians who are looking to engage in research data support services need to learn emerging principles and concepts and develop skills that will enable them to provide services that support networked research. The New England Librarian e-Science program delivers various modes of instruction to foster e-Science learning and collaboration among librarians in the region,that include the following:
  • Health Care Workforce 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, and cultural competency in health care, among many other issues.

  • Health Literacy “is the degree to which individuals have the capacity to obtain, process, and understand basic health information and services needed to make appropriate health decisions.” (Healthy People 2010) This COI explores issues related to health literacy, including plain language, easy-to-read materials, teach-back, cultural competence, shared decision making, numeracy, and patient/provider communication. 

  • Healthy Communities explores issues related to health information and education outreach to the public in general as well as underserved populations. Topics include planning, implementing, and evaluating community outreach activities, communicating health information to patients and the public, and contributing to your institution to provide community benefit.

  • HealthIT 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.