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Archive for the ‘Technology’ Category

PNR Rendezvous for August 20 – RELM Project

Thursday, August 14th, 2014

RELM: Research and Evidence Literacy in Medicine presented by Ann Gleason and Sherry Dodson of the University of Washington Health Sciences Library.

August 20, 2014 at 1 PM Pacific (noon Alaska 2 PM Mountain)

Next Wednesday, August 20, Ann Gleason and Sherry Dodson will be speaking about the RELM: Research and Evidence Literacy in Medicine gaming project. Gaming as a means of delivering online education is gaining in popularity. Online games provide an engaging and enjoyable way of learning. Gaming is especially appropriate for case-based teaching, and provides a safe environment for experiential learning. With funding from the National Libraries of Medicine, the University of Washington (UW) Health Sciences Library and the UW School of Medicine partnered to create on interactive, self-paced online game encouraging players to employ the four steps in practicing evidence-based medicine (EBM). The intended audience for the game is practicing physicians, residents and medical students interested in furthering their skills in using EBM. Sherry and Ann will discuss the history of the project, results of our beta testing and lessons learned about creating games. We will also present a short demo of the game which is in the final stages of being developed.

To attend go to http://webmeeting.nih.gov/rendezvous and login as a Guest, using your own name.  Once logged into the web meeting, a pop-up box allows you to put in your phone number and the program will call you. If this does not happen, just call the 800 number and use the participant code that appears in the Notes box on the screen.

If you are unable to tune in live, we invite you to view a recording of the webcast, posted to the Rendezvous website later.

As part of our Federal agency services regarding electronic and information technology resources being accessible to people with disabilities, closed captioning is available on this and future PNR Rendezvous webcasts.

PNR Rendezvous for July 23 – Salud Se Puede

Thursday, July 17th, 2014

Salud Se Puede (Good Health Is Possible): Promotoras and Health Information Needs in the Latino Community presented by Seth Doyle of the Northwest Regional Primary Care Association and Cindy Olney of the Outreach Evaluation Resource Center.

July 23, 2014 at 1 PM Pacific (noon Alaska 2 PM Mountain)

Community Health Workers (CHWs) continue to gain national recognition as valuable, if not essential, members of the healthcare workforce.  According to a 2007 CHW Workforce Study conducted by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), there were 86,000 CHWs in the United States in 2000, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects this to be among the fastest growing occupations in the health care field.  CHWs go by many names, including outreach worker, peer health educator, and patient navigator.  In Spanish speaking communities CHWs are commonly referred to as promotores(as) de salud.  CHWs play a vital role in facilitating health care access, while addressing disparities and improving health outcomes.  Seth Doyle will provide a brief overview of the CHW model and review current examples of CHW practices and initiatives.

Building from this overview, Cindy Olney will describe a story-based method used to assess the Health Information Hispanic Outreach (HIHO) Colonias Project conducted by the University of Texas Health Science Center Library.  Promotores de sauld who worked with low-income Hispanic neighborhoods (colonias) in the Lower Rio Grande Valley were trained to use MedlinePlus en español to help residents find information about their health concerns. The stories collected throughout this project illustrated in detail how colonias residents benefitted from the promotoras’ health information outreach activities.

To attend go to http://webmeeting.nih.gov/rendezvous and login as a Guest, using your own name.  Once logged into the web meeting, a pop-up box allows you to put in your phone number and the program will call you. If this does not happen, just call the 800 number and use the participant code that appears in the Notes box on the screen.

If you are unable to tune in live, we invite you to view a recording of the webcast, posted to the Rendezvous website later.

As part of our Federal agency services regarding electronic and information technology resources being accessible to people with disabilities, closed captioning is available on this and future PNR Rendezvous webcasts.

Guest post: Capturing Content for Distance Learning

Friday, June 13th, 2014

This is a guest post written by Jon Anscher on behalf of the Northwest Regional Primary Care Association.  The NWRPCA received a Technology Improvement Award from the NN/LM PNR to purchase equipment for capturing sessions at the organization’s two annual conferences.

Community Health Centers (CHCs) need a comprehensive learning environment with modularized learning components that are current, interactive, and engaging and our goal was to deliver a higher quality and broader access through online resources. In an age where technology is changing too fast for our infrastructure to keep up, it is essential that CHC workers have access to the latest information without having to attend every retreat, workshop, or training that is offered.

Add to that a challenging economy, and distance learning becomes the saving grace of a new age. Through distance learning, we can offer training and information that is instantly accessible, easy to update, and is less than half the cost to clinics that cannot afford continually sending their staff to conferences and courses to stay current. Further, distance learning has the capacity to target specific learning and identify the needs of the learners so that participants can maximize their time, learning content that is the most relevant to them.

The Challenge

The staff at Northwest Regional Primary Care Association (NWRPCA) regularly received feedback from conference participants that there was so much good content, they wished they could go to more than one session. Given this consistent need, the Education and Training Team wanted to extend the visibility and accessibility of our conferences through better capture and delivery of content. Secondarily we also wanted to deliver higher quality online learning by doing better work capturing and delivering content.

Thanks to an award from the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, Pacific Northwest Region, we were able to do just that. The resulting content captured from purchased equipment has allowed us to extend the reach of our conferences and the valuable learning that can be found there.

Learning from Our Ignorance

Yet this journey was not without challenges. As a small nonprofit, NWRPCA is constantly struggling to keep up with current trends in technology and content delivery. Maintaining the equipment and a skilled staff is no easy task. And the time and effort that goes into editing the hours of footage captured cannot be overestimated. Video editing is a time consuming process that is often not user friendly. As such, it has become apparent that there is a fine balance between quality and speed of delivery. Finding that balance is a challenge and one that we continue to address.

The biggest surprise, however, was the complexity of the capture process. Entering into this, we thought that resources were our big deficiency, but we quickly realized that equipment was a drop in the bucket compared to the time it took to develop and edit the content we captured and the skills it took to ensure we could capture and work with the content. We quickly found that building partnerships and finding ways to develop solid workflow was key.

Additionally, the number of times that captures were lost due to clipped audio, crashed software, or user error was surprising. Anyone considering capturing content from a conference should have a clear purpose for why they are doing it, a measured need, and a clear goal about how they are going to manage all that content.

Not only was the human factor big, but the size of the captured content quickly became an issue. As the size of content grew, we quickly realized we needed a strong plan for how to keep the content safe. We had anticipated a large working drive to keep the content on, but the need for redundant backup drives quickly out-paced us.

Lastly, it is very important that you understand the cost to value ratio. How much of a commitment of staff and resources is the content worth? At first, we tried to capture content at the highest quality. But we quickly discovered that space was not unlimited and had to make decisions about the level of quality that we truly needed.

Success

Overall, this project has been a big success. We engaged a broader audience and learned a lot about balancing quality and quantity. Many conference attendees were eager to gain access to the recordings for sessions they missed and sessions they wanted to share with others. Ultimately, this was our sign of success.

MeSH On Demand

Thursday, May 29th, 2014

MeSH on Demand is a new tool announced in this month’s NLM Technical Bulletin and is available online for use: http://ii.nlm.nih.gov/Interactive/MeSHonDemand.shtml. This is one of the Natural Language Processing tools being developed in the Cognitive Science Branch of the Lister Hill National Center for Biomedical Communications, a division of the NLM. The on Demand tool analyzes chunks of text (up to 10000 characters) and identifies potentially related MeSH terms. From the MeSH on Demand page a user simply pastes in a piece of text, hits the “Find MeSH Terms” button, and a new page will be generated with suggested MeSH terms listed below the inputted text. According to the Technical Bulletin article, the tool will find “MeSH Headings, Publication Types, and Supplementary Concepts, but not Qualifiers (Subheadings).”

A disclaimer appears on the tool’s page that the results are generated via an automated, machine logic driven system which is meant to emulate human indexer thought. One can deduce from the disclaimer that we shouldn’t expect the underlying algorithms to understand all of the same textual nuances that a seasoned indexer would and it notes that “results will undoubtedly differ from any human-generated indexing.” This got me wondering though about how much the tool’s generated terms would differ from human-generated ones. To evaluate, I pasted in an abstract from an article on Computerized Provider Order Entry systems causing medication errors.  This was by no means meant as a methodical and thorough evaluation of MeSH on Demand.  Rather, this was simply meant to address personal curiosity and this particular article was selected using a “convenience sampling” technique (it was already open in a different tab).  This article had previously been indexed for MEDLINE with the following MeSH terms: (more…)

Free Webinar: Health Happens in Libraries: Technology Planning for eHealth

Tuesday, May 27th, 2014

Emily Hurst from NN/LM SCR, Vanessa Mason, and McCrae Parker will present in this Health Happens in Libraries webinar from OCLC tomorrow, May 28th at 2:00pm Eastern / 11:00am Pacific.

As the intersection of digital technology and individual health management grows, patrons will turn to libraries to access digital resources and learn how to put technology to work for their health. A recent IMLS study showed that an estimated 37 percent of library computer users (28 million people) explore health and wellness issues, including learning about medical conditions, finding health care providers, and assessing health insurance options. Join the Health Happens in Libraries team to learn how public libraries can leverage their technology infrastructure to better serve the health information needs of patrons. Participants will learn best practices and resources for eHealth technology planning for libraries of all sizes. Participants will also be introduced to strategies for communicating with community partners about their technology resources, and identifying ways to build eHealth services through collaboration.

Register here: http://webjunction.org/events/webjunction/technology-planning-for-ehealth.html

EHR usage update

Friday, May 2nd, 2014

We are now three years into the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare’s Meaningful Use EHR adoption incentive program. According to CMS’s website, as of March of this year, $14.8 billion in payments have been made to the over 470,000 providers and hospitals participating in the program. Those are some big numbers! But what about the people who are using the systems? Can we tell whether or not any of this is making a difference in quality of care? What about health care provider workflow or job satisfaction? (more…)