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Data, Data Everywhere and Not a Drop to Drink

PNR News - Fri, 2018-04-20 05:00

In the NNLM Big Data in Healthcare: Exploring Emerging Roles course, we asked participants, as they progressed through the course to consider the following questions: Do you think health sciences librarians should get involved with big data in healthcare? Where should librarians get involved, if you think they should? If you think they should not, explain why. You may also combine a “should/should not” approach if you would like to argue both sides. NNLM will feature responses from different participants over the coming weeks.

Written by: Jeff Durham, Medical Librarian, Desert Regional Medical Center, Palm Springs, CA

We swim in a sea of information; more often than not we are drowning in it. When a person is presented with a smorgasbord of data, how do we determine what we should eat? This is the current situation with regards to big data and healthcare. What data should be utilized and how. It is in this data-centric meal that the data-savvy health science librarian should be most at home: as critic, guide, and chef.

As health science librarians, we have a responsibility to not only provide the communities that we serve with access to up-to-date and accurate information, but also must be available to enable and facilitate the informational needs of researchers in our communities. With the tremendous amount of big data that is generated on a daily basis, health science librarians have a duty to become involved and assist all of their patrons, both lay and professional, to access, extract, and manage the data (both big and small) that they need.

There are barriers to making a librarian into a data-savvy librarian who can tackle big data problems with ease. One barrier is that many graduate schools in library and information science have not been as keen to teach data science in a general education format, preferring to see it more as a sub-specialty. This occurs ironically enough in iSchools as well. While there is a growing trend to change this educational oversight, it is not the dominant paradigm yet. Another barrier is that of opportunity. All too often, the librarian simply does not have the time or their employer does not provide the means (e.g. time off, reimbursement) for the librarian to refresh their skill set. Until library managers and directors see the value of continuing education of the librarians on their staff on how to use data science and work with big data, the health sciences librarian will continue to fall behind.

There are also opportunities to be found. In hospitals and health science libraries, with residents and medical students, there are lots of in-roads for librarians to make. Given the exponential growth in big data that biomedical devices and the prevalence of smart devices which are constantly generating both passive and active data there is a lot of big data to utilize. The data that is being produced has the potential to be used in research projects for students, residents, nurses, and doctors on staff. There is a significant gap between the abilities of these medical professionals and that of data science. The role of the data-savvy librarian is to be a bridge between these gaps. The data-savvy librarian is able to assist their patrons in identify the datasets that they need as well as demonstrating how to wrangle, clean and visualize their data. By doing this, the librarian provides an essential role in the medical field. It is through the management of big data and assisting the researcher with working with the data and discerning patterns and trends that the librarian enables the student, nurse, or clinician to make evidence-based decisions on the data. By doing so, the librarian assists not only the informational needs of the researchers, but also has a very real impact on patient care.

Categories: RML Blogs

Oklahoma City Bombing Occurred 23 Years Ago Today

SCR News - Thu, 2018-04-19 09:54
Photo of downtown Oklahoma City

“Downtown Oklahoma City” by Gerson Repreza via, November 5th, 2017, CCO

Twenty three years ago today, Oklahoma experienced one of the worst terrorists attacks to ever occur on U.S. soil.  A little after 9:00 a.m., a truck exploded in front of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal building located in the downtown of Oklahoma City.  168 lost their lives that day and many more were injured.

Domestic terrorists Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols were responsible for the attack.  They were both arrested, tried, and sentenced for the crime.  Terry Nichols was sentenced to life in prison and is serving his term in a Colorado penitentiary.  McVeigh was sentenced to death and was executed in 2011.

Today is National Oklahoma City Bombing Commemoration Day and there are a number of events happening at the Oklahoma City National Memorial Museum today and throughout the month.

Oklahoma is part of our region which is why we wanted to share this day in history and offer our support to their community.  Please join us in a moment of silence after you finish reading this blog post.

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Categories: RML Blogs

NNLM “All of Us” National Program Launches May 6: You Can Get Involved!

PSR Newsletter - Wed, 2018-04-18 19:41
All of Us Research Program

The National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM) is excited to announce the official launch of the NIH All of Us Research Program on Sunday, May 6, 2018! This national event will be held in seven local communities throughout the United States and will be broadcast via this website and on Facebook Live.

The All of Us Research Program is a historic effort to gather data from one million or more people living in the United States to accelerate research and improve health. Program goals are to develop a more effective way to treat disease by considering individual differences in lifestyle, environment and biology. This initiative comes from the key element from the Precision Medicine Initiative.

Additional information about this Program is available through the Precision Medicine – All of Us Research Program website. Program information is available for download in English and Spanish. NNLM Network Members can learn about involvement opportunities at a one-hour webinar on April 30th at 11:00am PDT.

Categories: PSR, RML Blogs

Recap: 2018 Louisiana Public Health Association Annual Conference

SCR News - Wed, 2018-04-18 18:48

Last week, I attended the Louisiana Public Health Association annual meeting for the first time. I had the privilege of also being a presenter there, premiering a session I’ve been developing on mHealth to a packed room.  It was a two-day conference with a crawfish boil at the President’s Reception on the first night.

My particular focus was on opioid- and disaster-related presentations. One of the plenary sessions was delivered by Natalie Roy, MPH, the Executive Director of the AgriSafe Network, a non-profit organization that aims to reduce health disparities in the agricultural community. She spoke about the importance of addressing farmworker safety and the Ag Health Risk Assessment Tool (AgHRA), a tool (only one of its kind) they developed for assessing risk and taking steps to reduce risk for those in agriculture.

Dr. Joseph Kanter, the Director of Health for the City of New Orleans, talked about the Opioid Crisis in Louisiana and how they were addressing it. He stated that addiction was not the result of abuse but rather over-prescription, citing a statistic that 75% of current injection drug users began with a legitimate prescription. Louisiana has one of the highest rates of prescription, with 118 prescriptions per 100 residents in 2012.

They are taking a multipronged strategy that includes but is not limited to reducing the available of opioids, decreasing harm to current users, reducing stigma and dispelling myths around drug use, and expanding treatment. More information can be found here:

The final one I’d like to highlight was a Bleeding Control Basics course, taught by Dr. Jennifer Avegno and Dr. Rebecca Schroll. It is a trauma-version of CPR training that was developed after the 2012 Sandy Hook shootings where it was found that with basic training, some of the children could have been saved with basic bleeding control skills. The two main tools in the arsenal during this training was a tourniquet and a moulage trainer (simulated casualty in a small box).  To find out more about this training, you can visit:

There were a lot of great sessions. And at the reception, I also learned about Second line, a traditional dance where people walk and twirl handkerchiefs in the air. Eventually, I’d see this out on the street when visiting the French Quarter during my stay. Overall, it was a fantastic conference and I hope to return again.

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Categories: RML Blogs

Upcoming: NNLM All of Us Webinar – April 30, 2018

SEA News - Wed, 2018-04-18 13:33

Register today and join the NNLM All of Us Coordinating Center on April 30 to learn about the NNLM All of Us National Program. The NNLM have teamed up with the NIH’s All of Us Research Program to raise awareness about the new organization and we want you to be a part of the action! The NIH’s All of Us Research Program is a historic effort to gather data from one million people living in the United States to accelerate research and improve health and is officially launching on May 6! This webinar will cover ways you can participate in the launch and other opportunities to get involved. This is the “first call” for NNLM members to get involved with the NNLM All of Us National Program.

  • Learn about the NNLM All of Us National Program
  • Gain an understanding of the goals of the NIH All of Us National Program
  • Learn about how NNLM network members can get involved!

Date: April 30, 2:00-3:00 PM ET

Categories: RML Blogs

Upcoming: NNLM All of Us Webinar

MAR News - Wed, 2018-04-18 10:25

Register today and join the NNLM All of Us Coordinating Center on April 30 to learn about the NNLM All of Us National Program. The NNLM have teamed up with the NIH’s All of Us Research Program to raise awareness about the new organization and we want you to be a part of the action! The NIH’s All of Us Research Program is a historic effort to gather data from one million people living in the United States to accelerate research and improve health and is officially launching on May 6! This webinar will cover ways you can participate in the launch and other opportunities to get involved. This is the “first call” for NNLM members to get involved with the NNLM All of Us National Program.

  • Learn about the NNLM All of Us National Program
  • Gain an understanding of the goals of the NIH All of Us National Program
  • Learn about how NNLM network members can get involved!

Date: April 30, 2:00-3:00 PM ET

Categories: RML Blogs


NER News - Tue, 2018-04-17 12:11




Any guesses on what the 2017 “Word of the Year” was?

It was actually a term, not a word. The term was “Fake news.”

Just 18 months ago this term was not familiar to most of us. However, “fake news” has become a very important topic to all of us. According to a recent article written by The Telegraph (April 7, 2018)  “fake news” is considered “one of the greatest threats to democracy, free debate and Western order.”

This blog post is not about current events or politics, however, it is about the importance of knowing how to evaluate the credibility of online information. Our focus here at the NER is health and medical information.  NLM offers some useful tools that you can use to evaluate online health information.  Although health information is the theme of this article, the information presented can be applied as you evaluate other online information, regardless of the subject.

MedlinePlus offers a valuable tutorial about how to evaluate online health information. . You can click on the link you can use the search box at the MedlinePlus home page , just type  “Evaluating Online Health Information” in the search box.

MedlinePlus Guide to Healthy Web Surfing

MedlinePlus provides a detailed guide to evaluate the credibility of a web site

The key points from the guide are:

  • Consider the source — Use recognized authorities –

Know who is responsible for the content. This information is often on the “about us” page, or it may be under the organization’s mission statement, or part of the annual report.

  • Focus on quality–All web sites are not created equal

Does the site have an editorial board? Is the information reviewed before it is posted?

  • Be a cyberskeptic–Quackery abounds on the Web

Does the site make health claims that seem too good to be true? Does the information use deliberately obscure, “scientific” sounding language? Does it promise quick, dramatic, miraculous               results? Is this the only site making these claims?

  • Look for the evidence–Rely on medical research, not opinion

Does the site identify the author? Does it rely on testimonials?

  • Check for currency–Look for the latest information

Is the information current? Look for dates on documents.

  • Beware of bias–What is the purpose? Who is providing the funding?

Who pays for the site?

  • Protect your privacy–Health information should be confidential

Does the site have a privacy policy and tells you what information they collect?

Trust It or Trash It Tool

I find that The Trust It or Trash tool (  is very helpful because I can print out the .pdf file and have beside me as I read and evaluate the credibility of information.

In addition to providing several useful tools to help you become a critical consumer of online health information, here are some additional reasons why you should consider getting your health information from MedlinePlus:

  • Does not include any advertising.
  • Does not ask for your personal information in order to use the website.
  • Provides easy search access, use either the search box or search by health topic.
  • Presents information in a variety of formats, such as videos and podcasts.
  • Provides information written by experts, updated regularly and is peer reviewed.
Categories: RML Blogs

It’s Donate Life Month

SCR News - Tue, 2018-04-17 10:57
 Organs People are Waiting for

“Organs People are Waiting for” via, July 2017, CCO.

April was designated as Donate Life Month in 2003; however, it was previously celebrated as a week long awareness event starting back in 1983.  Increased awareness about organ donation could potentially save the lives of the estimated 20 people a day that die while waiting for an organ donation.

The CDC estimates that on any given day there are approximately 75,000 individuals on the waiting list for organs but the demand far exceeds the supply.  Numbers show that 95% of adults support organ donation but yet only 54% are actually signed up to donate.  One organ donor can save up to eight lives!

There are two types of donors:  living and deceased.  Deceased donors make up the majority of donated organs.  Living donors donate a kidney more frequently than other organs but they have also donated part of a liver, pancreas, lung, intestine and some tissues.  Very few issues prevent someone from donating an organ so factors such as age, religion, and most illnesses are typically not going to rule someone out.

There are two ways to register to donate, either online or at your local motor vehicle department.  You can also learn more by visiting one of these websites:

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Categories: RML Blogs

Reflections on Big Data in Healthcare: Exploring Emerging Roles

PNR News - Mon, 2018-04-16 17:55

In the NNLM Big Data in Healthcare: Exploring Emerging Roles course, we asked participants, as they progressed through the course to consider the following questions: Do you think health sciences librarians should get involved with big data in healthcare? Where should librarians get involved, if you think they should? If you think they should not, explain why. You may also combine a “should/should not” approach if you would like to argue both sides. NNLM will feature responses from different participants over the coming weeks.

Written by: Kathleen Carlson, Education Librarian, College of Medicine Phoenix, University of Arizona, Phoenix, AZ

It is essential for the future of medical librarians to get involved in Big Data. Much of our future work will be coming from big data research projects, especially librarians that work in hospitals and health care systems. Since librarians were early adopters of technology, we were able to move from print indexes to searching indexes on CD-ROMs that were eventually moved to the Web. Moving from the card catalogue to integrated automated library systems, librarians understand how important it is to move forward with Big Data. Many of the older, experienced librarians may not have the expertise or training in the fields of math, computational skills, statistics and domain expertise but we know that our profession should be part of our institutions Big Data team and at least have a seat at the table.

I know that being an Assistant Professor of Practice in the Department of Biomedical Informatics (BMI) at my academic institution, has allowed me to understand and speak the language of Big Data. Clinicians will come to me for resources and journal articles and I have learned a lot by attending monthly journal club meetings on different subjects of Biomedical Informatics and Big Data. BMI fellows, Chief Medical Information Officers (CMIO,) Chief Nursing Officers (CNO) of area hospitals, and BMI faculty attend the sessions. Here I have an opportunity to be seen and be heard and ask questions when they arise as a non-clinician. We have covered the following topics of Big Data and Informatics in the past three years:

  • Cybersecurity
  • Data Standards
  • Health Literacy
  • Electronic Health Record/Electronic Patient Record
  • Process Oriented Health Information Systems
  • Clinical Decision Support Systems
  • Graphic Display and Visualization
  • Health information Exchange
  • Cloud Computing Services
  • Substitutable Medical Applications and Reusable Technologies (SMART)
  • Fast Health Interoperability Resources (FHIR)

I also attend monthly Clinical Informatics Grand Rounds. The speakers vary from clinicians to researchers, MBA, Pharmacy and Public Health faculty.

So, for the past three years I have had a seat at the table and have given our library visibility within Biomedical Informatics and Big Data. I also believe that a medical librarian at any institution should find a champion or champions that will assist him/her in getting a seat at the table. And when that is accomplished, a hospital librarian should get permission to embed at least one vetted  link that is appropriate to a patient’s electronic record with,  National Institute on Aging, or another consumer health oriented resource. This would relieve the burden on clinicians in finding the best resource for patient care.

Big Data can be organized, appraised, secured, preserved with a librarian’s help and can assist researchers and clinicians in patient care and help find areas that may need improvement. Creating an online resource guide with Big Data tools and resources can be a first step into marketing the librarian and library. The NNLM PSR had recently recruited a data and technology services coordinator. She asked librarians if they collected any data for their institution. Unfortunately, we are considered a satellite campus of a large Research One University. I think there are areas at my institution where data is collected but could be used more effectively. I know within the Scholarly Project, a four-year mandatory thesis and poster at our institution, many of our students use Big Data from area hospitals or the state’s data archives to have foundational information in their presentations and theses. They are assisted by their clinical mentors.

I also like one of my fellow course student’s discussion post about teaching himself ‘R’ so he is able to teach classes to the data scientists on his campus. Finding resources for Big Data programming language and free software for statistical computing and graphics software like ‘R’ and can help the librarian be an informational resource for Big Data collection. This instruction example is one-way librarians will have to get out of your comfort zone and put themselves out there for Big Data. We have access to SPSS and STATA in our library commons. I took three classes on RedCap to help me understand Big Data and how to collect it safely and securely. REDCap is a secure web application for building and managing online surveys and databases and collecting data.

The librarian can be the go-to resource for students and researchers and help them search the archives of stored Big Data sets. I do not believe that our small campus has the capacity to store Big Data and it is not something that the larger academic institution is willing to duplicate. I do believe that as a librarian being visible and attending committee meetings, journal clubs, clinical informatic rounds and actually showing an interest in learning about Big Data gives a librarian the knowledge and vocabulary to understand and share with her constituents. The librarian can also familiarize himself/herself with websites that assist in Big Data knowledge similar to the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation which I learned about in the course discussions.

Categories: RML Blogs

So you want to be an outreach librarian? Spotlight on Katherine Chew

GMR News - Mon, 2018-04-16 14:48

Who knew there was such a thing as “outreach on a stick”? If you’re in Minnesota, like this month’s GMR Partner Outreach Librarian, Katherine Chew, you might know. From ice cream, taffy apples, and every deep fried food you can think of (olives!), the Minnesota State Fair takes the on-a-stick notion to new heights.


Name: Katherine Chew
Title: Research/Outreach Services, University of Minnesota Bio-Medical Library, Minneapolis, MN

  1. How long have you been in the role of an outreach librarian?
    Officially November of 2014, practically (i.e. first outreach activity/event) April 2015.
  2. How did you get involved in outreach?
    When our Public Health/Outreach Librarian, Anne Beschnett, left in October 2014, I got tapped for the Outreach role for three reasons: (1) I had helped Anne with exhibiting, (2), at the time I had the most flexibility with my current job duties to take on fulfilling the outreach contract and (3) the library director had decided that as part of recruiting for a new Public Health Librarian, that outreach would be replaced by data curation duties, so outreach became a permanent part of my job.
  3. What is your favorite outreach project that you’ve done so far?
    The most favorite outreach activity is staffing a booth at the Minnesota State Fair. It is fun, exhausting (on your feet for six to nine hours), exhilarating, informative and a great way to interact with people. All shapes, sizes, ages, genders, educational levels, nationalities and work disciplines stop by and you get to hear great stories and pass on lots of information.
  4. What outreach activity do you hope to do in the future?
    Don’t have an answer for that — still trying to perfect the ones I am doing now.
  5. What is the one thing you wished you had known before you got started in outreach?
    How difficult it can be to get people to come to an instructional session at a conference and some tips and tricks to get people to show up.
Categories: RML Blogs

April 27 Deadline Approaching for HSLANJ Group Licensing Offer

SEA News - Mon, 2018-04-16 11:42


The deadline to participate in the Health Sciences Library Association of New Jersey’s Group Licensing Initiative’s (HSLANJ GLI) Spring Offer is less than two weeks away, on Friday, April 27. Due to the online ordering system, no exceptions can be made regarding the deadline. The HSLANJ GLI greatly appreciates and welcomes early orders.

All medical librarians in a 20-state area including the NNLM’s Middle Atlantic (MAR), Southeastern/Atlantic (SEA), and New England (NER) Regions are welcome to participate in the technology-sharing, cost-cutting consortium—considered the first consortium of its kind designed specifically for medical librarians. This is the HSLANJ GLI’s 16th year of operation.

The Spring Offer features:

  • More than 700 high-quality, digital resources from 14 academic publishers
  • A cost-savings of 15-70% off regular pricing thanks to the power of group purchasing

Please note the Spring Offer’s ordering process uses the newest version of ConsortiaManager (, in order to further streamline and enhance the ordering/renewing process. A training session has been recorded and linked to each librarian’s user profile for viewing; simply log into CorsortiaManager and click More > Materials to access the training.

Questions? Please contact Robert T. Mackes (570-856-5952 or


Categories: RML Blogs

Reflections on Big Data in Healthcare: Exploring Emerging Roles

GMR News - Mon, 2018-04-16 09:35

In the NNLM Big Data in Healthcare: Exploring Emerging Roles course, we asked participants, as they progressed through the course to consider the following questions: Do you think health sciences librarians should get involved with big data in healthcare? Where should librarians get involved, if you think they should? If you think they should not, explain why. You may also combine a “should/should not” approach if you would like to argue both sides. NNLM will feature responses from different participants over the coming weeks.

Written by: Nicole Montgomery, MISLT, AHIP, Librarian, Assistant Professor, CoxHealth Systems and Cox College, Springfield, MO

I am certain that Health Sciences Librarians should be involved with anything healthcare. This is our job.

I have often teased that we are the bartenders of our institutions. We have a seat in the organization that is unique to any other in that it allows us to interact with everybody. Literally, everybody! From the person who cleans the library, to the CEO of the hospital, or the people who work in financial services, the nurse on the floor, an occupational therapy student, a patient who just learned her baby will be staying in the NICU, or a physician trying to determine the best treatment for a difficult case. We hear people’s stories; we hear their frustrations and sometimes lend an ear when they need one. Librarians are intrinsically user-focused.

We typically get to know our users, and we are able to see the overall picture of the information they are seeking. Because of our familiarity with our users, if a physician needs insight into a nutrition-related topic, I am in a position to know which dietician on staff will likely be able and willing to answer his questions. Or, when the college I work with decides to investigate some cool 3-D equipment, I am able to suggest collaborating with the hospital’s residency program to share the cost and make the most of using the equipment. The real-life examples are endless, but ultimately, we desire to bridge the gap between departments, disciplines and people with like-interests; because we know that working together is usually better than staying in our silos.

What I am not certain of, is to what level we should be involved with big data initiatives. In the light of Big Data, I believe most librarians still have a lot to learn about our organizations before we may answer the question about our level of involvement. I imagine we will all find different answers.

In conjunction to exploring our institutions, I think librarians need to begin discussions in an attempt to answer how Big Data may impact libraries. We need to ask ourselves questions about the future such as: will we still have print books, current journals and stacks of bound serials? Will libraries still exist as brick and mortar buildings? Will all of our materials be delivered electronically? Will the librarian simply become a person behind a computer screen? Will our profession become a fond memory of the past, just like the card catalog? What will the entire publishing industry look like? Krumholz briefly addresses the question about the publishing industry on p. 1169 of his article by saying, “In the future, the products of scientific inquiry may evolve from a static journal publication to a more dynamic platform for presenting and updating results.” Brennan predicts the same at 1:10:21 of her presentation. She says (with an apology to any journal editors), “We’re moving pretty quickly away from journal articles and pretty fast into blogs…and shared knowledge building. In health sciences, the “bread and butter” of our world is journal articles. While we, as librarians, typically pride ourselves on being willing to embrace technology, I think the inception of Big Data into our world may challenge us and may change our profession in a way we cannot yet imagine.

In an effort to give us a place to begin, librarian Elaine R. Martin provides a proposed “Data Management Framework for Librarians.” She says her proposed framework is user-centered and includes five “buckets”: Data Services, Data Management Practices, Data Literacy, Archives/Preservation, and Data Policy. Without delving into explaining each “bucket” within this essay, it is easy to say that each proposed bucket provides familiar concepts to librarians. For instance, the Data Services bucket, “…may include the following activities: assessing researcher needs, performing an institutional data environmental scan, conducting the research interview, designing a suite of services such as assistance with DMPs [Data Management Practices] based on user needs, etc.” These concepts are digestible for librarians and definitely provide us with a place to start.

While my parallel of being the bartenders of our institutions is intended to be humorous, there is quite a bit of truth to this. No matter what changes the future holds, as librarians, we will instinctively do our part.


  1. Krumholz, HM. Big Data And New Knowledge In Medicine: The Thinking, Training, And Tools Needed For A Learning Health System
  2. Brennan, Patti. NINR Big Data Boot Camp Part 4: Big Data in Nursing Research
  3. Martin, Elaine R. The Role of Librarians in Data Science: A Call to Action
Categories: RML Blogs

NNLM SEA Digest News – April 13, 2018

SEA News - Fri, 2018-04-13 15:41

Welcome to the National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM), Southeastern/Atlantic (SEA) Region’s Weekly Digest. This digest includes upcoming events, online training opportunities, news, and past events. 

Top Items of Interest

National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM) News

Upcoming Online Training Opportunities*

Asynchronous Online Moodle Courses

Webinars: April 16-20

Webinars: April 23-27

Webinars: April 30 – May 6

Webinars: May 7 – 11

On-Demand Asynchronous Online Moodle Courses

In addition to the webinars listed, the NNLM Public Health Coordination Office provides webinars for subscribers to the Digital Library. Visit the NPHCO Calendar for training opportunities available. 

National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Library of Medicine (NLM), and National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) News

NIH News

NLM News

NLM Technical Bulletin

NCBI Insights

Focus on Data

Focus on Precision Medicine

Focus on Substance Use Disorder

Miscellaneous News

NNLM SEA Communications

Notes on NNLM Training Opportunities

  • All sessions listed are sponsored by a specific regional or national office, but open to all.
  • Webinars are scheduled for 1 hour unless otherwise noted.
  • The NNLM class registration system requires a free NNLM account prior to registration.
  • Visit the NNLM Training Opportunities to register and view a full calendar of training opportunities.
  • Please visit the NNLM Acronym Guide to understand the acronyms.
  • Refer to this guide to claim MLA CE credit.
  • Not all Training Opportunities listed provide MLA CE credit. Please refer to the class page to see if a specific session offers credit.

** Please note that recordings from NNLM available on YouTube may not have MLA CE Credit available. Please contact the regional office that sponsored the webinar for details.


Categories: RML Blogs

Weekly Postings

MAR News - Fri, 2018-04-13 10:33

See something of interest? Please share our postings with colleagues in your institutions!


Funding applications are due today! Applications for our upcoming round of health information outreach funding are due by 11pm this evening – don’t forget our last funding tip – follow directions for submission. Please note, late applications will not be accepted. We look forward to funding some great projects!

NNLM Edit-a-thon: don’t forget to use #citeNLM2018 next week during NNLM’s first Wikipedia Edit-a-thon – we’re adding citations to existing articles on rare diseases! Not sure how to add citations in Wikipedia? There’s still plenty of time to watch the recording from our training session and join us on April 17.

Member Highlights: Martin Library, York, PA – Learn how this York library increased teen awareness and communication about opioid addiction issues through community programming. Has your library developed a similar program? Share your story with us to receive a Member Highlight on the MARquee.

National Network of Libraries of Medicine News

The Health Sciences Library Association of New Jersey (HSLANJ) Spring 2018 Group Licensing Offer is now available. The deadline to participate is Friday, April 27. NNLM MAR members are eligible for this cost-saving opportunity!

Renew your membership today! If you have not yet verified that your organization’s record is up-to-date, see our recent blog post about the benefits of renewal and NNLM Membership. Are you having trouble creating an NNLM account? If you have received an error message such as, “email address already in use,” contact us for assistance. Please Note: Applicants for NNLM MAR funding must have updated membership records.

Librarians and Big Data: Should We Be Involved? – MCR News

Stand Up for Health: Health and Wellness Services for Your Community PLA Pre-Conference Workshop, Philadelphia, PA, March 20, 2018 – Midwest Matters, from GMR

New Free Materials: did you know that NNLM Network Members can order educational and print materials for free? The Middle Atlantic Region is proud to announce the availability of 9 new posters from the Libraries Transform campaign for Members in NY, NJ, PA and DE. Place your order today!


Celebrating Libraries and Those Who Make Them RunNLM Musings from the Mezzanine, Innovations in Health Information from the Director of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

Getting it Right on Rare Diseases: The National Network of Libraries of Medicine’s First #citeNLM2018 Edit-a-thon on April 17NLM in Focus, a Look Inside the U.S. National Library of Medicine

NIH Director’s Blog

Circulating Now, from the Historical Collections of the National Library of Medicine

Eric Dishman, director of the All of Us Research Program at the National Institutes of Health, will deliver the 2018 Joseph Leiter National Library of Medicine (NLM)/Medical Library Association (MLA) Lecture, Wednesday, May 9. His topic will be, “Precision Communications for Precision Health: Challenges and Strategies for Reaching All of Us.” Learn more about this lecture and opportunities to watch the live broadcast or archived recording.

NLM and NNLM Educational Opportunities

All are webinars, unless noted. Please note that the class registration system requires obtaining an NNLM account prior to registration. Learn how to register for classes from the NTO.

NNLM and NLM classes are free and open to all. Please feel free to share these opportunities!

How Do Communities Welcome People Managing Mental Illnesses and the Disease of Addiction? – April 18, 2:00-3:00 PM ET – Many communities have made concerted efforts to welcome and serve vulnerable people who manage mental illnesses and/or the disease of addiction. Very often, libraries function as the focal point for information about services, diagnoses and treatments, and other community groups turn to them for guidance. Sponsored by MAR, this webinar will provide ideas about how community members can learn about behavioral health issues, so they can serve these citizens with respect and dignity.

Beyond the Memes: Social Media Evaluation – April 18, 4:00-5:00 PM ET – In this webinar, you will learn the basics about social media analytics, and how to use the data to evaluate social media campaigns and programs. You will also learn the basic principles of evaluation, such as creating realistic outcomes and objectives for your social media activities. After this PNR Rendezvous, you’ll be able to evaluate and report on your social media activities, and have a basic understanding of evaluation principles.

Grab and Go: Expanding and Strengthening Senior Programming – April 27, 2:00-3:00 PM ET – Participants in this GMR webinar will be introduced to creative and fun ways to expand and strengthen programming at senior facilities and at the library, especially for patrons living with dementia. Whether utilizing memory kits, travel and reading programs, and antique items to inspire memories and encourage conversations, or by incorporating painting, stuffed animals, therapy dogs, and music activities to stimulate the senses, participants can develop ideas that work for their library, community, and budget.

EvalBasics 2: Planning Outcomes-Based Programs – April 30-June 4, 2018 – The logic model is a useful tool from planning projects that will help you drive toward your desired results. Participants in this asynchronous online course by NEO will learn how to identify desired outcomes, create an outcomes-based project plan using logic models, and then write objectives and evaluation plans based on those logic models. It provides an ideal framework for developing funding proposals, sets the stage for setting up a quality control system to make sure your project stays on track, and provide a structure for your final reports.

Harnessing Human Power for Health: Medical Librarians & Citizen Science – May 3, 2:00-3:00 PM ET – With the plethora of diseases and medical conditions people face and environmental health issues encountered around the world, medical researchers and governmental regulators can’t tackle them on their own. This is where citizen science comes into play: where legions of people who often have no medical or scientific background contribute to and participate in research projects. Sponsored by SEA, this webinar will provide an overview of citizen science, as well as its variants such as volunteered geographic information, crowdsourcing and patient-led research. Health-focused librarians from a variety of settings will discover how they can support already-existing citizen science projects and gain tips on creating their own.

Other Items of Interest

Job Postings:

Research from AHRQ’s EvidenceNOW Initiative Sets the Stage for Advances in Primary Care – AHRQ Views

MAR Postings is a comprehensive weekly news series authored by the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, Middle Atlantic Region (NNLM MAR)

Categories: RML Blogs

April 2018 Citizen Science in Libraries Webinar Recording Now Available!

PSR News - Thu, 2018-04-12 17:02

On April 10, NNLM PSR presented Citizen Science in Libraries: Fostering Community Connections on Citizen Science Day and Beyond. The featured presenters were Darlene Cavalier, professor of practice at Arizona State University and the founder of SciStarter, a citizen science database and platform, and Dan Stanton, Associate Librarian in the Engagement and Learning Services Department of the Arizona State University Library. The session introduced health sciences librarians to the concepts of cultural competence and cultural humility. This webinar provides a general overview of citizen science, highlight recent activities to support libraries as community hubs for citizen science, and showcase free resources available to librarians who want to jump in now by promoting citizen science at libraries leading up to, during, and after Citizen Science Day on April 14, 2018. To view the webinar and presentation slides, visit the Citizen Science in Libraries page or click on the YouTube video player below.

screen capture of Youtube controls with full screen icon encircled
Note: To switch to full screen, click on the full screen icon in the bottom corner of the video player. To exit the full screen, press Esc on your keyboard or click on the Full screen icon again. If you have problems viewing full screen videos, make sure you have the most up-to-date version of Adobe Flash Player.

Categories: PSR, RML Blogs

Eric Dishman to Deliver 2018 NLM/MLA Leiter Lecture Videocast on May 9

PSR Newsletter - Thu, 2018-04-12 15:57
Eric DishmanEric Dishman

Eric Dishman, director of the All of Us Research Program at the National Institutes of Health, will deliver the 2018 Joseph Leiter National Library of Medicine/Medical Library Association Lecture on Wednesday, May 9, at 10:30 AM PDT, in the Lister Hill Auditorium on the NIH Campus. The lecture is open to the public. It will be broadcast live on the Web (and later archived) at: The featured presentation will be Precision Communications for Precision Health: Challenges and Strategies for Reaching All of Us. Among other topics, he will discuss these challenges and strategies:

  • Meeting communities where they are (understanding their needs, concerns around research, meeting their literacy levels, etc.);
  • Widening the definition of precision health and conveying the fact that All of Us is more than a genomics program;
  • Ethics and logistics of targeting with marketing analytics; and
  • Balancing the promise, with the hype and vision, with the need for patience.

As director of All of Us, Dishman leads the agency’s efforts to build a national research program of one million or more US participants to advance precision medicine. Previously, he was an Intel fellow and vice president of the Health and Life Sciences Group at Intel Corporation, where he was responsible for driving global strategy, research and development, product and platform development, and policy initiatives for health and life science solutions. His organization focused on growth opportunities for Intel in health information technology, genomics and personalized medicine, consumer wellness, and care coordination technologies.

Dishman is widely recognized as a global leader in health care innovation with specific expertise in home and community-based technologies and services for chronic disease management and independent living. Trained as a social scientist, he is known for pioneering innovation techniques that incorporate anthropology, ethnography, and other social science methods into the development of new technologies. He also brings a unique personal perspective, as a cancer patient for 23 years and finally cured thanks to precision medicine, to drive a person-centric view of health care transformation.

“Eric Dishman is the perfect speaker at the perfect time,” noted NLM Director Patricia Flatley Brennan, RN, PhD. “His message about the power of people to advance scientific discovery is a strong one. Also, as was announced last year, NIH’s All of Us Research Program and NLM are teaming up to raise awareness about this landmark effort to advance precision medicine. As our colleagues at the Medical Library Association know so well,” she continued, “libraries serve as vital community hubs. NLM’s collaboration with All of Us presents a perfect opportunity to help the public understand how health research impacts all of us. By pairing our National Network of Libraries of Medicine members with public libraries to reach local communities, we hope to contribute to medical breakthroughs that may lead to more tailored disease prevention and treatment solutions for generations to come.”

The Joseph Leiter NLM/MLA Lecture was established in 1983 to stimulate intellectual liaison between the MLA and the NLM. Leiter was a major contributor in cancer research at the National Cancer Institute and a leader at NLM as a champion of medical librarians and an informatics pioneer. He served as NLM Associate Director for Library Operations from 1965 to 1983.

Categories: PSR, RML Blogs

Librarians and Big Data: Should We Be Involved?

MCR News - Thu, 2018-04-12 13:40

Written by: Caroline Marshall, MLS, AHIP, Senior Medical Librarian, Public Services, Cedars-Sinai Medical Library, Los Angeles, CA

There is a great deal of discussion about Big Data. We all think other people are doing it, we think we should be doing it, but we are not sure how to get involved (Tattersall & Grant, 2016).

There have been Calls to Action (Martin, 2016) about Big Data and an affirmation in several studies that librarians should get involved. It is almost as if we are going to miss the Big Data train if we don’t jump on board right away. Big Data is not going away but we, as librarians, need to ascertain how involved we can get depending on staffing and time.

Librarian skills for Big data have been identified more or less along the following bullet points

  • Information Curation
  • In-Depth research
  • Digital Scanning, Preservation
  • Cloud Data Expansion
  • Data Visualization
  • Collaboration, Teaching and Facilitation

Librarians are no strangers to Big Data and we often use these skills already; we use usage data in journal evaluation and renewals. We look at interlibrary loan data to ascertain how quickly we are turning requests around and as an indication of what journals we should purchase. We work with medical staff on citation management software teaching them how to manage, organize and share large quantities of citations for their publications. Librarians perform information curation such as creating digital archives and assigning metadata that will provide access points or cataloging different types of materials for easy retrieval. In-depth searching is something most of us do every day, defining the question or query to retrieve data is a common skill for many librarians.

Learning other skills such as Data Visualization, especially for some librarians who are mid-career, will mean outside workshops (Burton & Lyon, 2017) that will take away from our “regular” work and there is also the question of whether leadership will want to take us in this direction.

Burton & Lyon (2017) suggests librarians should be ‘Data Savvy’ but this is not a skill that can be taught. We cannot push roles onto staff that do not have the knowledge or the desire. Future Masters of Library Science Programs can incorporate more specific courses to create the data scientist librarian that can be part of the research team, but how will this look? How many projects can one person be embedded especially in an institution that has multiple research projects ongoing? Will that librarian be part of the library or employed by the research team?  

I see the librarian’s role not as being embedded in a research team but more in a collaborative, instructional, and facilitation role. This includes teaching classes on statistical or visualization software, and giving guidance on designing the query or on the creation of a database that will need to answer not just the immediate queries, but other queries that the researcher may not have thought of that may come up in the future. We can also identify data repositories that researchers can use that are in our own institutions but that are not gathered in any one place or provide advice on digitization and preservation. We can act as sounding boards in a more consultative manner as opposed to just classes.  

We cannot do everything and we need to be aware of staff, skills and time. Some of us are just getting our toes wet offering classes and so forth, but before scaling up to an institutional level we need to ascertain what we can offer and support.


Burton, M., & Lyon, L. (2017). Data Science in Libraries. Research Data and Preservation (RDAP) Review. Bulletin of the Association for Information Science and Technology. . Bulletin of the Association for Information Science and Technology, 43(4), 33-35.

Martin, E. R. (2016). The Role of the Librarian in Data Science. a Call to Action. Journal of eScience Librarianship, 4(2), E1092.

Tattersall, A., & Grant, M. J. (2016). Big Data – What is it and why it matters. Health Info Libr J, 33(2), 89-91. doi:10.1111/hir.12147


Categories: RML Blogs

International Day of Human Space Flight, Astronauts, and Space Parties

SCR News - Thu, 2018-04-12 10:29

Debbie Montenegro with Astronaut Clayton Anderson

During the race to the stars, Yuri Gagarin became the first human in space on April 12th, 1961. The UN recognizes today as the International Day of Human Space Flight to commemorate “the space era for mankind, reaffirming the important contribution of space science and technology in… increasing the well-being of States and peoples, as well as ensuring the realization of their aspiration to maintain outer space for peaceful purposes” (UN).

As we think about the first human in space today, I’d like to share a first for my Astronaut Health class… a real live astronaut in attendance! As the consumer health coordinator, I created a course on astronaut health and STEAM resources (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Math). I have had the wonderful opportunity to present the session at different conferences throughout the South Central Region. Sleeping Bear Press was kind enough to send on my invitation to astronaut Clayton Anderson and he came to attend my session at TLA! Clayton was very enthusiastic and interactive during the session and answered several of my presentation questions with real world experience.

While discussing astronaut anatomy, I mention that fluid shifts may cause Visual Impairment Intracranial Pressure (VIIP) syndrome in some astronauts. In other words, their eyesight can worsen in space. Clayton let me know that he did not suffer from loss of vision after five months in space, due to a special protein in his body. My mind was blown! We also discovered that astronauts eat tortillas instead of bread in space, not only because the crumbs could float into and ruin equipment (or lungs!), but because bread goes bad faster and takes up more room. He added a very unique perspective to the session. I would like to extend a huge thank you to Clayton Anderson for coming and also to Sleeping Bear Press, TLA, and Mike Pullin for helping to make it possible.

Astronaut Clayton Anderson’s own session, Turning Pages into Dreams, took place right after mine. I attended his session and was delighted to find he was a raucous hoot and an unexpected package of astronomical hilarity. For visual evidence of this, see the photo above! He talked about his own experience growing up, becoming an astronaut, what it was like, and told us about the books he has written since. His latest book is titled A is for Astronaut: Blasting Through the Alphabet and is filled with beautiful illustrations with an A to Z space story for little ones, along with additional text in the side bars for all ages.

After the excitement of having an astronaut attend my class, I’m already looking forward to the next event and it’s one you can participate in too. Taking place on and around April 12th is “Yuri’s Night”. Held by science centers and other organizations around the world, Yuri’s Night combines education and outreach with space-themed partying to celebrate humanity’s journey into space as well as the anniversaries of Yuri Gagarin’s trip to space and the first space shuttle launch on April 12, 1981. See the events list to find an event near you or to plan for next year!

For more information on the Astronaut Health: Science Education Resources session presentation, check out the Class Descriptions page on our website:

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Categories: RML Blogs

PNR Rendezvous session on social media evaluation

PNR News - Thu, 2018-04-12 07:00

Session title: “Beyond the Memes: Social Media Evaluation”

When: April 18,  1:00pm PT, noon Alaska Time, 2:00pm MT

Presenter: Kalyna Durbak, Program Coordinator, NNLM National Evaluation Office

If you engage users on social media, you know that it takes a lot of time and effort- but how do you know if your hard work is paying off? Join this PNR Rendezvous webinar session where you will learn the basics about social media analytics, and how to use the data to evaluate social media campaigns and programs. You will also learn the basic principles of evaluation, such as creating realistic outcomes and objectives for your social media activities. After the webinar, you’ll be able to evaluate and report on your social media activities, and have a basic understanding of evaluation principles.

Registration is encouraged. The session will be recorded and posted on the PNR Rendezvous web page under ‘Past Classes’.

Medical Library Association CE is available for attending the live session or watching the recording.

Categories: RML Blogs

NLM’s Community Health Maps Resource Supports Citizen Scientists and Communities

PSR News - Wed, 2018-04-11 16:21

Community-based organizations, environmental health groups, public health agencies, and emergency management departments are in a better position to serve their populations when they are able to collect and maintain their own data, rather than relying solely on national or state agencies, or on majority-institution partners to provide data to them. The National Library of Medicine’s Community Health Maps (CHM) offers information and guidance regarding low and no cost resources to help students, teachers, community members, and researchers. It is a mixture of mapping apps/software reviews, best practices, and the experiences of those who have successfully implemented a mapping workflow as part of their work. Examples of maps created using the CHM workflow include:

To learn more, visit this blog post from NLM in Focus.

Categories: PSR, RML Blogs