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Archive for the ‘General (all entries)’ Category

November Issue of NIH News in Health Now Available

Wednesday, November 5th, 2014

NIH News in Health_Nov 2014

The November issue of NIH News in Health, the monthly newsletter bringing practical health news and tips based on the latest NIH research is now available:

Features:

Preventing Type 2 Diabetes: Steps Toward a Healthier Life

Diabetes raises your risk for heart disease, blindness, amputations, and other serious issues. But the most common type of diabetes, called type 2 diabetes, can be prevented or delayed if you know what steps to take.

Parkinson’s Disease: Understanding a Complicated Illness

Parkinson’s disease can rob a person of the ability to do everyday tasks that many of us take for granted. There’s no cure, but treatment can help.

Health Capsules:

Progress Toward a Bird Flu Vaccine

Participating in Alzheimer’s Research

Featured Website: Safe to Sleep

Click here to download a PDF version for printing.
Visit our Facebook page to suggest topics you’d like us to cover, or let us know what you find helpful about the newsletter. We’d like to hear from you!
Please pass the word on to your colleagues about NIH News in Health. We are happy to send a limited number of print copies free of charge for display in offices, libraries or clinics. Just email us or call 301-402-7337 for more information.

 

Updates and Important Dates Related to the ACA

Monday, November 3rd, 2014

5 steps screen shotNow that Halloween is past and we have turned the page to November, the next Open Enrollment Period for the Health Insurance Marketplace is just around the corner!
Open Enrollment at HealthCare.gov begins on November 15th, and concludes on February 15, 2015. Although the Open Enrollment Period targets consumers yet not enrolled in a health insurance plan, individuals who currently have coverage through the Marketplace will want to review their plan and decide whether to make changes during the Open Enrollment Period as well. The “5 Steps to Staying Covered through the Marketplace” has been created to help consumers better understand the renewal process. In brief, the steps are:

1.) Review

2.) Update

3.) Compare

4.) Choose

5.) Enroll

From Coverage to Care Screen ShotFrom Coverage to Care (C2C) is another initiative from CMS designed to help people with new health coverage understand their benefits and connect to the primary care and preventive services that are right for them. C2C resources are available to download and print in English and Spanish. Other resources include consumer tools and an 11-part video series.

Other Marketplace updates have already and will continue to take place as the date for the Open Enrollment Period gets closer. Several changes to the HealthCare.gov website and application process have been made which are designed to make the process simpler, faster, and more intuitive. You can visit the site today to begin to see these changes.

The NN/LM SCR is working to continue to provide information for our Network members on the Affordable Care Act and the Health Insurance Marketplace. The ACA Resources page on the website has been recently updated to include these and other resources.

Upcoming webinar: The NN/LM SCR office will be hosting a special webinar on November 18, 2014 presented by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Region VI Office on the topic of Preparing for Open Enrollment. Please watch our listserv and other sources for specifics on this webinar.

 

 

Update on Important Resource: RHIN Becomes HealthReach

Tuesday, October 28th, 2014

HealthReach logoThe Refugee Health Information Network (RHIN) was a national collaborative partnership whose principal focus was to create and make available a database of quality multilingual/multicultural, public health resources to professionals providing care to resettled refugees and asylees.

Earlier this month, the National Library of Medicine (Specialized Information Services Division) broadened the scope of RHIN by rebranding it HealthReach. This was done to better meet the needs of the diverse non-English and English as a second language speaking audiences. HealthReach continues to recognize the importance of providing refugee and asylee specific information while expanding the information provided to meet the needs of most immigrant populations.

Currently, there is not a great deal of change between the “old” RHIN and the “new” HealthReach; over the next several months new resources will be added.  This was intentional in order to help provide continuity of service throughout the transition.  Please use the new Twitter handle @NLM_HealthReach and the new URL http://healthreach.nlm.nih.gov .  Over the next several months the site will transition from the .org to the .gov site. Feedback is welcome through the “Contact Us” link on the website.

New MedlinePlus Mobile Sites in English and Spanish

Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014

M+ capture

Yesterday, MedlinePlus released new versions of the MedlinePlus Mobile sites in English and Spanish. The mobile site URLs are http://m.medlineplus.gov and http://m.medlineplus.gov/espanol

Like the original versions of the mobile sites, the redesigned sites are optimized for mobile phones and tablets. Unlike the original mobile sites that contained only a subset of the information available on MedlinePlus, the new sites have all of the content found on MedlinePlus and MedlinePlus en español. They also have an improved design for easier use on mobile devices.

The key features of the redesigned mobile sites are:
• Access to all the content available on MedlinePlus and MedlinePlus en español
• Improved navigation using “Menu” and “Search” menus to access search and major areas of the sites
• Enhanced page navigation with the ability to open and close sections within pages
• Updated look and feel with a refreshed design

This new version of MedlinePlus Mobile is the first step in redesigning MedlinePlus and MedlinePlus en español to behave responsively. Responsively designed Web sites automatically change their layouts to fit the screen of the device on which they are viewed, whether that is a desktop monitor or a mobile touchscreen.

In 2015, the MedlinePlus team will release a fully responsive version of MedlinePlus to provide a consistent user experience from the desktop, tablet, or phone. This will remove the need for a separate mobile site. Users will then have one destination for MedlinePlus (www.medlineplus.gov) when using any device.

Until then, try out this first offering of MedlinePlus’s responsive design on your smartphone at http://m.medlineplus.gov and http://m.medlineplus.gov/espanol. Send us your feedback and comments about the new site via the Contact Us link that appears on every page.

October Issue of NIH News in Health Now Available

Friday, October 10th, 2014

NIH News in Health_Oct

The October issue of NIH News in Health, the monthly newsletter bringing practical health news and tips based on the latest NIH research is now available:

Features:

Sweet Stuff:  How Sugars and Sweeteners Affect Your Health
Is sugar really bad for us? How about artificial or low-calorie sweeteners? Learn more about the sweet things most of us eat and drink every day.

Cold, Flu, or Allergy:  Know the Difference for Best Treatment
You’ve got sniffles, sneezing, and a sore throat. Is it a cold, flu, or allergies? Learn to tell them apart so you can choose the best treatment.

Health Capsules:

Genetic Clues to the 2014 Ebola Outbreak

NIH Health Information at Your Fingertips

Featured Website: It’s a Noisy Planet

Click here to download a PDF version for printing.
Visit our Facebook page to suggest topics you’d like us to cover, or let us know what you find helpful about the newsletter. We’d like to hear from you!
Please pass the word on to your colleagues about NIH News in Health. We are happy to send a limited number of print copies free of charge for display in offices, libraries or clinics. Just email us or call 301-402-7337 for more information.

 

Update on the 2014 Ebola Outbreak

Thursday, October 9th, 2014

Ebola

Since publishing our previous blog post on the 2014 Ebola outbreak in West Africa, the South Central Region has seen the first official imported case of Ebola.

On September 30, 2014, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) confirmed the first imported case of Ebola in the United States. The patient, a man who traveled from Liberia to Dallas, Texas, “did not have symptoms when leaving West Africa, but developed symptoms approximately five days after arriving in the United States”. After being given experimental treatments, the patient passed away on October 8, 2014. The CDC is currently monitoring the people that have come into contact with the patient, although the risk of infection is very low.

From the CDC:

Ebola is spread through direct contact (through broken skin or mucous membranes in, for example, the eyes, nose, or mouth) with:

  • blood or body fluids (including but not limited to urine, saliva, sweat, feces, vomit, breast milk, and semen) of a person who is sick with Ebola
  • objects (like needles and syringes) that have been contaminated with the virus
  • infected animals
  • Ebola is not spread through the air or by water, or in general, by food.

A person must be exhibiting symptoms in order for Ebola to spread. Ebola has an incubation period of up to 21 days and the average time for symptoms to appear is 8-10 days. These symptoms often include fever, severe headaches, muscle pain, weakness, diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and unexplained hemorrhaging. Isolation precautions and proper sterilization are the primary methods of prevention.

As these developments impact our region, the NN/LM SCR is committed to connecting you with quality health information resources. To register for an upcoming webinar on Managing Health Information Resources regarding Ebola hosted by the National Library of Medicine’s Disaster Information Management Research Center (DIMRC), visit their page.

An additional webinar, entitled Fighting Ebola and Infectious Diseases with Information, also featuring presenters from DIMRC will take place on October 14, from 1pm-2pm CT.

Free Antivirus Options

Tuesday, September 30th, 2014

Computer virusAccording to PC Magazine “Not having antivirus protection isn’t just a personal risk: Unprotected computers can be springboards for attacks.” It is important that any computer you use have properly installed and updated antivirus software. Antivirus software is computer software used to prevent, detect and remove malicious software from an infected computer. In today’s connected computer world viruses can quickly spread from one machine to the next if antivirus is not properly used or updated.

While may large organizations rely on antivirus solutions such McAfee or Norton there are other solutions that work just as well for little or no cost.

The experts at PC Magazine recently provided an online comparison of several free antivirus products they were able to test in a lab environment. Free editions of antivirus options such as Bitedefender, AVG, and Panda Cloud Antivirus all scored well.

There are many choices for free antivirus solutions available and this review highlights the strengths and weaknesses of many. It is important to install and run antivirus protection not only for the security of your computer but also for the security of those you network with. Don’t let an unprotected computer infect others! Be sure that the antivirus software you use is updated regularly as new viruses are frequently created.

Input Embargo Periods In DOCLINE

Tuesday, September 30th, 2014

Frustrated by the number of requests your library gets for articles that are embargoed? Now you can enter journal embargo periods in DOCLINE. Here is more information about the DOCLINE 5.0 Release http://www.nlm.nih.gov/pubs/techbull/so14/so14_docline_release.html

Screen Capture of DOCLINE embargo period

NCBI Bioinformatics Course Applications Accepted

Tuesday, September 30th, 2014

NCBI logo

From the NLM Technical Bulletin:

Health science librarians in the United States are invited to participate in the next offering of the bioinformatics training course, “A Librarian’s Guide to NCBI,” sponsored by the National Library of Medicine (NLM), the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), and the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, NLM Training Center (NTC).

The course provides knowledge and skills for librarians interested in helping patrons use online molecular databases and tools from the NCBI. Prior knowledge of molecular biology and genetics is not required. Participating in the Librarian’s Guide course will improve your ability to initiate or extend bioinformatics services at your institution.

Online Pre-Course and In-Person Course Components
There are two parts to “A Librarian’s Guide to NCBI,” listed below. Applicants must complete both parts. Participants must complete the pre-course with full CE credit (Part 1) in order to advance to attend the 5-day in-person course (Part 2).

  1. “Fundamentals of Bioinformatics and Searching” an online (asynchronous) course, January 12-February 13, 2015
  2. A five-day in-person course offered onsite at the National Library of Medicine in Bethesda MD, March 9-13, 2015

Who can apply?

  • Applications are open to health science librarians in the United States.
  • Applicants will be accepted both from libraries currently providing bioinformatics services as well as from those desiring to implement services.

Enrollment is limited 25 participants.

What does it cost?
There is no charge for the classes. Travel and lodging costs for the in-person class are at the expense of the participant.

Important Application Dates

  • Application deadline: November 17, 2014
  • Acceptance notification: On or about December 15, 2014

More information on the course and the application form are located on the NLM Technical Bulletin.

Changes in the NN/LM SCR Office

Thursday, September 25th, 2014

Significant changes have recently occurred at the NN/LM SCR.

The NN/LM SCR main office has moved from the Houston Academy of Medicine-Texas Medical Center Library (HAM-TMC Library) building and relocated to the John P. McGovern Historical Research Center at 8272 El Rio Street, Houston TX 77054.  The Associate Director and support staff will be housed in this facility. The four Coordinators, Cheryl Rowan, Naomi Gonzales, Emily Hurst and Karen Vargas will be telecommuting employees.

The following is a message from L. Maximilian Buja, MD, Executive Director of the HAM-TMC Library and Director of the NN/LM SCR, explaining the rationale for the relocation.


8272 El Rio

The HAM-TMC Library (dba The TMC Library) has begun implementation of a key component of its Strategic Plan. This involves a reenvisioning of the current library into a contemporary Health Science Information Center. This will involve the downsizing of the space in the library building (JJL Building)from a net 70,000 sq. ft. to 50,000 sq. ft. This will be accomplished primarily by downsizing the book and current print journal stacks to create an open architecture for contemporary learning and research. The downsizing of the print collection is being accomplished in a careful manner so that important and unique print material will be retained either on-site or at secure off-site locations. The Library’s commitment to the NLM Print Retention program remains intact.

There is necessarily going to be less office and non-public space in the modernized library. The central administrative functions and offices as well as the core of the McGovern Historical Collection are to be maintained at the JJL  Building. Given the need to reduce the non-public space in the JJL Building and taking into consideration that the primary mission of the Regional Medical Library program is outreach, the decision has been made to move the base of operations of the NN/LM SCR to the Library’s annex where the archives are housed.This is in an 11,000 sq. ft. facility located at 8272 El Rio St., about 2 miles from the JJL Building. The rationale for this decision was discussed with the Associate Director, Michelle Malizia, and her input taken into consideration in going forward with the implementation.

Support Staff office

At the Archives building, space has been created for the NN/LM SCR that includes a 148 sq. ft. private office for the Associate Director, a 244 sq. ft. shared space for three administrative staff, as well as space for printers and storage of exhibit backdrops and equipment. Additional space for the administrative staff is under development. There is also a 168 sq. ft. conference room that will be shared by the NN/LM SCR and existing Archives staff. Appropriate connectivity for computers and internet has been established.

A plan is being implemented for the four coordinators to function as telecommuting employees. In the current work environment, telecommuting is an established form of doing business that has proven successful for a variety of enterprises. There is also a precedent for this approach previously established within operations of the RM Ls. The Library will ensure all necessary equipment and other support to make this approach successful.

Ongoing operations are to include regular meetings of the entire NN/LM SCR staff on a bi-weekly basis and regular meetings of the entire staff with the Director of the program. The Houston Academy of Medicine (HAM) established the Library in 1915. The current Library does business as a subsidiary of HAM. The HAM operates the JJL Building in the Texas Medical Center (TMC) and the Library rents space from HAM at cost. There is current consideration of transfer of the ownership of the building from HAM to another TMC entity. The Library has been given a firm guarantee that the Library of 50,000 sq. ft. will continue at the current site in perpetuity and at affordable rent.

Regardless of these considerations about the JJL building, the home of the NN/LM SCR will continue to be in the Library annex facility.