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SEA Currents

Newsletter of the NN/LM Southeastern/Atlantic Region

Archive for the ‘Advocacy’ Category

Share Your Success: Outreach to a New Population

Friday, October 17th, 2014

DarraBallance1Darra Ballance, MLIS, AHIP
Georgia Statewide AHEC Network
Robert B. Greenblatt MD Library
Georgia Regents University
Augusta, GA

On the health sciences campus of Georgia Regents University, a child care center for children of faculty, staff, and students has been in operation since1988. The Center is licensed by the State of Georgia¬. It is 3-star Georgia Quality Rated (the highest designation) and is accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). My child had attended day care and Pre-Kindergarten at the center, and I had seen the Director’s efforts to improve nutrition and wellness for the children, families, and teachers. As an Area Health Education Centers (AHEC) librarian I was familiar with outreach awards and had received NN/LM funds for projects in the past. In March 2013, the Director and I partnered to apply for an NN/LM Health Literacy Pilot Project sub-contract award, with a goal to improve nutrition literacy among the center’s teachers.

We received the award funds and went right to work. Our plan was to purchase iPads for the teachers (the center had no technology in the classrooms) and showcase the infant and toddler nutrition pages on MedlinePlus. We also hired a young, energetic dietitian to deliver the nutrition content of our sessions—she was able to use many materials that the center already owned, such as fake food, to demonstrate ChooseMyPlate guidelines to the teachers. I taught the nine teachers how to use the iPads and took them through the NLM’s Guidelines for Healthy Web Surfing.

The teachers were enthusiastic participants in the outreach sessions and asked many questions. We had excellent attendance; all teachers attended at least four of the five one-hour sessions, and were given a small stipend at the completion of the project (sessions took place after the center closed for the day).

Teachers completed a brief assessment test at the beginning and end of the project. Scores on the post-test were markedly higher than the pre-test scores. At the conclusion of the project, the teachers indicated that they gained increased personal understanding of formerly confusing nutrition issues (e.g., how to read a nutrition label, what a whole grain is). Teachers were also able to identify aspects of web sites linked from MedlinePlus that indicated the sites served as reliable sources of health information. The dietician also incorporated content from MedlinePlus into her final session, although she had not been required to do so.

One teacher commented: “I like the fact that going to MedlinePlus for medical and nutrition information will provide information only from secure sites. Also, I was clueless about caloric and water intake needs. Now I’ve transferred my learning from these classes to my practices with my family. Now I try to serve the MyPlate categories and portion sizes. I now read labels on products in the grocery store before making a decision about purchasing items.” Another teacher stated: “I learned a great deal. I found out that a lot of foods I classified as healthy were actually not healthy.”

Childhood obesity is a huge risk for this generation of children, many of whom spend significant time and consume a good deal of their daily food intake at day care centers. Access to technology and nutrition training made a difference in teachers’ knowledge about wellness and healthy food choices. When child care teachers understand principles of good nutrition, and learn how to use technology to share that information with parents and other family members, everyone benefits. Our library is grateful to NN/LM SE/A for this opportunity to partner with a new user population that we have never reached before.

Do you have a story you’d like to share? Enter NN/LM SE/A’s “Share your Success” event and enter for a chance to win one of two $1,500 Travel Awards to MLA 2015!

SE/A Advocacy Committee for Hospital Librarians

Thursday, October 16th, 2014

By: Mollie Titus, Librarian, Self Regional Healthcare, Greenwood, SC
Contact Mollie at:

PJ Grier, Outreach/Access Coordinator, National Network of Libraries of Medicine, Southeastern/Atlantic Region
Contact PJ at:

The Hospital Librarians’ Program Advisory Committee (HLPAC) held its first meeting on April 10, 2014 at the University of Maryland Health Sciences and Human Services Library. The HLPAC was formed under the National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NN/LM) Southeastern Atlantic Region (SE/A) and is overseen by the Regional Advisory Committee (RAC). The HLPAC’s mission is to collaborate with the SE/A Regional Medical Library (RML) to identify and promote opportunities for the benefit of hospital librarians in our 13-state region.

The Committee recognizes the challenges hospital librarians face in their ever-changing healthcare environments. While mergers and healthcare funding have played a key part in bringing about change, technology has also had a significant impact on hospital library transformation.  As a result, hospital librarians are constantly challenged to re-envision their roles, learn new approaches and respond to the manner in which their customers acquire information. All of these techniques provide library value.

Customers are acquiring patient research, treatment, and care information in new and exciting ways. It is not simply literature searching anymore. It is about data and information management. Methods include results from EHR analytics, information technology initiatives, consumer engagement applications, and applications that work in concert with EHRs, as well as metrics and goals imposed or suggested by government and regulatory agencies, such as the National Quality Strategy (NQS).

NQS is a result of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010. Its three broad aims are to provide better, more affordable care for the individual and the community, with a focus on six priorities to guide efforts to improve health and health care quality. Hospital librarians should become proficient in one or more of the nine levers that underpin the six priorities. Hospitals can choose to use these levers to align core business functions, resources, and/or actions that may serve as means for achieving improved health and health care quality. As an example, one of the nine levers is “payment”, which hospital librarians can adopt if they choose to opt-in to a group purchasing initiative such as HSLANJ-GLI. Joining a group purchasing arrangement demonstrates to hospital leadership that the library has a stake in aligning itself with the NQS. And perhaps if your hospital also supports the lever’s design mechanism, there may be a reward or incentive attached. See chart.

Lever Icon Design Example
Payment reward Reward and incentivize providers to deliver high-quality, patient-centered care. Join a regional coalition of purchasers that are pursuing value-based purchasing.

To further explore, the NQS offers free archived educational webinars that explain its aims, priorities and levers in greater detail.

Networking remains an ever-important aspect of librarianship, and ways to collaborate and connect include participation in committees, listservs, association memberships, meetings, and webinars. Budgets are a constant concern; try taking advantage of consortiums, active negotiation with vendors, and applying for grants or awards. When possible, get out of the library. Choose wisely, but do participate in organizational committees that involve research or content organization; volunteer for hospital or community events; network with other departments – be active!

The HLPAC encourages hospital librarians to take advantage of resources currently available through the Regional Medical Library, such as the Hospital Librarian’s Toolkit, SEA Currents articles, Beyond the Sea webinars and the new SEAside webinars, and SE/A funding opportunities. Visit the HLPAC website, for member contact information, as well as the SE/A website, for updates and resources. HLPAC is having its autumn meeting on November 4th; feel free to contact any HLPAC member with questions, comments, and concerns anytime.

Current members of the HLPAC are: Mary Wallace Berry, Novant Health Presbyterian Medical Center, Charlotte, NC; Jan Haley, Saint Thomas West, Nashville, TN; Dionne Lyne-Rowan, Columbus Regional Health, Columbus, GA; Mollie Titus (Chair), Self Regional Healthcare, Greenwood, SC; and PJ Grier (ex-officio), NN/LM SE/A. HLPAC is also seeking an additional member from the DC, MD, or VA area to fill a vacancy. If you are interested in volunteering please contact PJ Grier. Members are here to assist fellow hospital librarians with outreach and library promotion, resource maintenance, funding options, and educational growth.


Tuesday, September 23rd, 2014

PRINCETON, NJ (SEPTEMBER  23, 2014)—All medical librarians in the MAR and SE/A Regions are invited to participate in the Group Licensing Initiative (GLI), formed under the umbrella organization Health Sciences Library Association of New Jersey (HSLANJ), through their Fall 2014 Offer. Nearly 500 resources from 11 vendors are available through the Offer, and at a cost savings of 15-70% off regular pricing, through the leveraging of group purchasing power.

Group Licensing is a creative solution to the escalating cost of high-quality electronic resources—medical journals, books and databases. More than 100 hospitals and medical facilities regularly participate in the HSLANJ Group Licensing Initiative, known as the first consortium of its kind in the nation.

The National Network of Libraries of Medicine, Mid-Atlantic Region (MAR), and Southeastern/Atlantic Region (SE/A) fully recognize and endorse the HSLANJ Group Licensing Initiative as the lead organization capable of assisting libraries in their efforts to utilize multi-dimensional electronic resources. Managed by medical librarian and HSLANJ Executive Director Robert Mackes, MLS, AHIP, the GLI is guided by a committee comprised of librarians from different-sized health facilities in the regions served.

To receive a copy of the Fall Offer, please contact Robert Mackes at 570-856-5952 or The deadline to participate in the Fall Offer is Friday, October 31. New this fall: See the HSLANJ website, under “News” for articles previewing vendors’ new resources available through the Offer (

For additional information on the HSLANJ Group Licensing Initiative, come meet with the GLI’s Robert Mackes in October at any of the following chapter meetings:

  • October 19-21: MAC, Alexandria, VA
  • October 22-23: UNYOC, Saratoga Springs, NY
  • October 24: NYNJ Chapter, NY, NY
  • October 27-29: Southern Chapter, Mobile, AL

Feel free to contact Robert about scheduling a meeting or presentation about the GLI, at your next chapter, state organization or local consortium meeting, as well.

The HSLANJ Group Licensing Initiative is funded in part with Federal funds from the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services, under Contract No. HHS-N-276-2011-00003-C with the University of Pittsburgh, Health Sciences Library System. This project is also funded in part with Federal funds from the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services, under Contract No. HHS-N-276-2011-00004-C with the University of Maryland Baltimore.

Share Your Success: Impacting Patient Care Through Evidence-Based Practice

Friday, September 19th, 2014


By Emily Brennan, MLIS, Research Informationist, Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) Library, Charleston, SC,

In my role as Research Informationist at MUSC Library, I teach and employ evidence-based practice (EBP) thus impacting patient care on both an individual and systematic level. As Co-Director of the Pediatrics Residency EBP Curriculum, I round with interprofessional teams on the inpatient wards, providing answers to clinical questions that arise at the point-of-care. I am also involved in the weekly EBP noon conference in which residents present on an EBP topic. Clinical rounding, informal training, and structured instruction are also a part of the Year 3 College of Medicine Pediatrics Clerkship, in which I am a preceptor. Throughout their pediatrics rotation, medical students work in teams to complete a project that involves developing a clinical question based on a patient, then finding and appraising an article that answers that question. My involvement in the pediatrics residency program and clerkship ensure that evidence-based research is integrated into clinical expertise, leading to better patient care.

As a member of MUSC’s Center for Evidence-Based Practice, I am also involved with EBP on a more systematic level. The Center is housed jointly in the Library and the Quality Management department of the MUSC Hospital, and includes a Director, Elizabeth Crabtree MPH, PhD(c), librarian (myself), and Clinical EBP Analyst. The Center develops evidence-based hospital guidelines, clinical decision support tools, and provides EBP education for MUSC clinicians, staff and students. The Center for EBP uses interprofessional content expert teams to develop evidence-based order sets for the electronic health record (EHR).
In my role as lead librarian in the Center for EBP, I am responsible for performing literature searches on clinical questions of interest for a given disease process or topic. My expertise in conducting comprehensive literature searches ensures that the best research evidence is integrated into practice. Once I complete the search, I share the search strategy and relevant references with the Director of EBP through a shared reference management account. The Director then critically appraises, evaluates and summarizes the evidence. The content expert teams then review the evidence and develop recommendations that drive the development of order sets. This framework helps ensure the delivery of comprehensive, coordinated, evidence-based care across the clinical spectrum.

The Center teaches clinicians, staff and students about the theory, practice and dissemination of EBP through educational courses. Three courses focus on the process of EBP: 1) Nurse Scholars Course, 2) Interprofessional Pediatrics Course, and 3) College of Medicine Year 2 Students EBM Curriculum. The primary outcome assessment for these courses is the completion of an evidence summary that requires participants to formulate clinical questions, search the literature, appraise the evidence, identify quality measures, and develop practice recommendations that drive care for a particular clinical topic. The final evidence summary leads to either an updated hospital policy or clinical decision support tool, such as an EHR order set. I teach how to formulate a clinical question, differentiate study designs, search the literature, and manage references. The Director of EBP describes how to identify stakeholders, interpret statistics, appraise the evidence, select quality measures, and translate the evidence.

Participants who have completed either the Nurse Scholars or Interprofessional Pediatrics Course may participate in an Evidence-Based Practice Leadership Program. This program, starting in fall 2014, will equip clinicians to lead change, and implement and disseminate evidence. My responsibility in this course will be to prepare participants to disseminate the evidence, including writing an abstract, selecting a journal for publication or conference for presentation, and creating a professional poster.
In my roles as Research Informationist and a member of the Center for EBP, I am uniquely positioned to equip clinicians, staff and students with the skills necessary to make evidence-based decisions during every day clinical practice, as well as impact and standardize patient care on a systematic level.

Share Your Success and Enter for a Chance to Win One of Two $1500 Travel Awards to MLA 2015

Tuesday, September 16th, 2014

October is National Medical Librarian Month, and NN/LM SE/A wants to celebrate your success. Last year’s “Share Your Success” event featured awe-inspiring stories about library advocacy and new roles for librarians. Joan Colburn, Director of Library and Knowledge Services at Mountain AHEC in Ashville, NC  won the drawing for the $1000 travel award for the 2014 MLA Annual Meeting in Chicago.

We are repeating the program this year and we are expanding the program to three kinds of stories to share on SEA Currents:

  1. Have you, as a librarian, made a difference in your work or your profession? Have you helped save a life? Have you found a solution to a problem others had searched for with no luck? Have you performed outreach and changed lives? Reached a new user population that your library had never reached before? Have you helped the family of a patient through the fear of uncertainty?
  2. Have you proven your worth to an administrator or told someone how important libraries are, changing his or her behavior?
  3. Have you explored new or non-traditional roles, expanding the realm of what a librarian does?

To enter the contest, tell us about your experience or share someone else’s story. Stories are how we demonstrate our value.

Articles will be published on the NN/LM SE/A SEA Currents blog throughout the months of October and November.

Authors and subjects of articles will be entered into a competition for two $1500 travel scholarships to MLA 2015 in Austin, TX. The scholarships can be used to cover travel: flight, hotel, and per diems.

We will accept entries until October 31, 2014. The winner will be announced on November 1, 2014.

Please submit articles to J. Dale Prince at

Good luck!

Last updated on Friday, 22 November, 2013

Funded by the National Library of Medicine under contract HHS-N-276-2011-00004-C with the Health Sciences and Human Services Library of the University of Maryland