By: Mollie Titus, Librarian, Self Regional Healthcare, Greenwood, SC
Contact Mollie at: firstname.lastname@example.org
PJ Grier, Outreach/Access Coordinator, National Network of Libraries of Medicine, Southeastern/Atlantic Region
Contact PJ at: email@example.com
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.
|Payment||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.