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Announcing the 2014-15 NN/LM PSR Express Outreach Awards!

Four outstanding projects were funded in response to the 2014-15 Request for Proposals: Express Outreach/Training/Technology Awards. These projects will be funded for $9,000 each, for a period of 12 months, beginning May 1, 2014. The projects strive to improve access to health information for health professionals and health consumers, and to promote the awareness and use of products and services available from the NLM and the NN/LM.

Ying Zhong, California State University, Bakersfield, Walter W. Stiern Library
The Reaching Out to the Unreached — Building a Health Information Hub in Central Valley outreach project will establish an endorsed partnership between the Walter W. Stiern Library at California State University, Bakersfield (CSUB) and health programs at Bakersfield Adult School (BAS). In California’s Central Valley, there is a predominant shortage of healthcare workers and resources needed to prepare them. Future health professionals need to be equipped with appropriate skills and expertise in order to meet the great challenge of serving an ethnic and culturally diverse population. Centrally located in the in the southern San Joaquin Valley, the CSUB Library is committed to providing quality resources and services to the community. In 2013, CSUB Library and Bakersfield Adult School (BAS) started a pilot partnership, which allows Vocational Nursing students from BAS to use the CSUB library resources, including books, journal databases, and research assistance provided by the CSUB nursing librarian. The CSUB Library will develop a tailored training program for BAS students and provide the technology equipment for accessing health information from CSUB Library and the National Library of Medicine at a partnering site for training that will be established at Bakersfield Adult School.

Eileen Packer, HARC, Inc. (Health Assessment Resource Center)
The Development and Distribution of the Special Senior Health Report in Coachella Valley outreach project will utilize newly obtained health survey data to create a special report on the health status of the particularly vulnerable senior population for outreach and regional health planning purposes. HARC, Inc. recently completed its third triennial health survey of Coachella Valley to provide data about the health needs and disparities facing the regions’ residents. This data offers local public, health, and social service agencies the general, but critical information they need to address community health needs. In March 2013, the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) released a report indicating that the Coachella Valley is undergoing a population “explosion.” More seniors and Latinos are migrating into this region, creating unique health needs. Older adults are more likely to suffer from chronic as well as multiple health conditions, in addition to financial perils. This special report will extrapolate important and relevant information from the 2013 health survey data, delve in depth into the health status, needs and disparities facing adults above the age of 55. The Special Senior Health Report will also include a section that describes available resources for senior health, including NIHSeniorHealth and MedlinePlus, among others. There will also be outreach efforts to share the report and NLM resources with agencies serving seniors in the Coachella Valley.

Naomi Broering, Pacific College of Oriental Medicine, Library/Learning Resources Center
The Pacific College of Oriental Medicine’s (PCOM) Teaching Mobile Access to Health Information and Promoting MedlinePlus Connect outreach program in San Diego will provide training in the use of mobile devices to access the National Library of Medicine’s health information resources, and promote MedlinePlus Connect capabilities. It is a collaborative project with four major organizational groups comprised of public libraries and librarians, faith-based organizations, community centers, and medical education organizations, e.g. UCSD Biomedical Informatics & PCOM Clinics, which serve San Diego’s 3.2 million residents. The PCOM library will conduct free health informatics workshops at participating organizations, featuring hands-on classes, demonstrations, and use of mobile tools (iPad, smartphone) with advanced computing and wireless connectivity. There are two project goals: First, is to emphasize the latest technology devices and access to NLM resources in training workshops for consumers of all ages, ethnic and cultural groups, practitioners, and students. Second, is to promote and increase awareness of MedlinePlus Connect’s capabilities to link EHR diagnostic information to health topics in MedlinePlus to retrieve patient education literature and improve medical communication. Training workshop participants include community residents, youths, patients, health professionals, interns, and staff at centers and libraries. Instruction will cover MedlinePlus, PubMed, AIDSinfo, and ClinicalTrials.gov, including access to multiple languages. Special workshops on MedlinePlus Connect will focus on promoting its features to practitioners, biomedical informatics doctors, medical students and medical/hospital staff and librarians.

Stephen Kiyoi, San Francisco General Hospital, UCSF/Barnett Briggs Medical Library
Through the Patient Engagement with MYSFHealth, San Francisco’s Patient Portal outreach program, the San Francisco General Hospital (SFGH) Library will build on its existing partnerships with the San Francisco Public Library, UCSF Center for Vulnerable Populations, and San Francisco Health Network (SFHN) providers, health educators, and administrators, to develop, promote, and deliver a program to help patients access and understand their information within MYSFHealth. In 2014, the San Francisco Department of Public Health will integrate and rebrand its healthcare delivery system – a network of hospitals and community clinics, which includes SFGH. This new delivery system, the San Francisco Health Network (SFHN), will make it much easier for providers to triage their patients and for patients to transition from different providers within the network. A key part of this effort is to consolidate patient health information into a unified, centralized repository that both providers and patients can access through separate interfaces. Patients will access their health information through MYSFHealth, SFHN’s online patient portal. We estimate that well over 100,000 patients receive care from SFHN providers. For the first time with MYSFHealth, all these patients will have the opportunity to access their health information online. There are many challenges to overcome to ensure that patients both access and understand their health information, since many patients are economically disadvantaged, struggle with chronic health conditions, and have low health and digital literacy. We will also work with the SFGH Associate Chief Medical Informatics Officer to integrate MYSFHealth with MedlinePlus content using MedlinePlus Connect.

NN/LM PSR will also continue to support the Arizona Outreach Cooperative Agreement with the University of Arizona, Arizona Health Sciences Library. Congratulations to all of the awardees on their successful proposals!

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