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Updated: 2 hours 57 min ago

Know Your Resources: Hepatitis Awareness Month

Fri, 2019-05-17 12:18

Know the ABC's of Viral Hepatitis infographic from the CDC.

May is Hepatitis Awareness Month in the United States.  Take the time to learn more about hepatitis and the resources you can use all year round to support education and prevention.

What is Hepatitis? Hepatitis is swelling, and inflammation of the liver caused by immune cells attacking the liver, liver damage from alcohol or poison, and bacteria, and parasites.  Hepatitis can also be caused by viruses (Hepatitis A, B, C, D and E)

How can you prevent Viral Hepatitis?  Prevention depends on the source of the liver damage and inflammation. Hepatitis A and E are typically spread through contact with infected food or water, so practicing safe food handling, including hand washing, is important.  Hepatitis B, C and D spread through contact with infected blood.  And Hepatitis B and D may also be spread through other bodily fluids including sharing needs or unprotected sex.

Learn more about viral hepatitis from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.

May 19 is Hepatitis Testing Day.  Find free, fast, confidential HIV, STD and Hepatitis testing near you with the GetTested site from the CDC.

And remember when you’re looking for health information online, start with trusted sources and continue to develop your critical thinking skills with the MedlinePlus Evaluating Health Information Online Tutorial.

Categories: RML Blogs

Register for the 2019 New England Science Boot Camp

Thu, 2019-05-16 14:41

Join us for the 11th Anniversary of the New England Science Boot Camp for Librarians, to be held on June 5-7, 2019 at the University of New Hampshire in Durham, New Hampshire.  A picturesque campus minutes from the New Hampshire seacoast. The campus is located in Durham, just about an hour north of Boston and about an hour south of the White Mountains. It’s easily accessible by many means of transportation, including Amtrak train, with a station right on campus.

The themes for this year’s SBC science sessions are:

  • Assistive Technologies
  • Social Justice in Science
  • Remote Sensing

Science Boot Camp is an immersive experience that provides librarians with the opportunity to network with peers and learn about topics in physical sciences, health sciences, life sciences, and technology.  On Wednesday evening, join us for a discussion with Malin Clyde, the Community Volunteer State Specialist as we discuss citizen science, and other efforts that create meaningful connections between communities and the natural world.  On Friday join us for the Capstone: Patents with Paulina.

To register, view the schedule and to see more information about Science Boot Camp visit:


Categories: RML Blogs

Mitigating Bias in Literature Searching: A View from the Health Sciences

Mon, 2019-05-13 11:34
View of downtown Cleveland

View of Cleveland, OH. Image  by Cleveland84 CC0

Cynthia Young, MLIS, Associate Academic Dean of Library Services at Eastern Maine Community College Library, received funding to attend the Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL) 2019 Conference in Cleveland, OH. She contributed this blog post on the session “Improving Ourselves and Improving Care: Mitigating bias in literature searching in health sciences” presented by Rachel Stark, California State University – Sacramento, Molly Higgins, Library of Congress.

Are librarians biased in their health research with students? Is health literature biased? Those are the questions two librarians tried to answer in their research for a workshop at the Association of College & Research Libraries Conference (ACRL 2019) in Cleveland, Ohio, on April 11, 2019. The workshop was led as a teach-the-teacher type course. The intent was that librarians would adapt a similar training session at their own institutions.

The conference workshop was attended by mostly college health librarians and health science librarians from medical institutions. Participants were introduced to three types of bias including racism, microagressions and implicit/unconscious bias. The first activity involved using mobile devices or laptops to take the Project Implicit bias tests created by Harvard University. The implicit bias tests use repetitious images and keyboard functions to learn users unconscious bias toward various minorities including but not limited to, sexuality, gender and weight. The test results often proved difficult for participants to accept, but the intent was to help them become aware of their faults in order to better serve diverse populations.

The next activity had participants write down an assumption of themselves made by a library patron. Each person then walked around the room viewing each person’s response and putting a checkmark if they’d experienced the same. Several librarians in the room wrote, “I thought you were a student” or “where’s the real librarian?” Other assumptions included, “you must love to read” and “you’re Asian, you must be smart.” To further drive home the concept, participants then walked back around the room and put an X if they’d seen a library patron experience that bias. The most common assumptions centered on age, sexuality and race.

A slideshow and discussion around the results of the presenter’s research showed large biases in medical research. Many minority groups were underrepresented or in some cases were completely unrepresented in health literature. The largest group of represented individuals in health research was Caucasian males. Caucasian women were less represented than males. Other demographics were less represented. An example used was that even studying Japanese women in Japan does not necessarily represent Japanese American women in the United States.

The final activity split the room into groups to do live database searching. The scenario participants were given involved a 30-year-old, pre-diabetic Japanese American female who went to her librarian to try to find a food list that was specific to her diabetic needs, but also met her Japanese style diet. Each table was tasked with developing a PICO question and using a computer to try to best answer the reference question. The research on the topic was lacking. There were plenty of diabetic studies on diet, but most were not focused on Japanese American females.

What will I take from attending this workshop? Many things! First, I work closely with our nursing students every year. Eastern Maine Community College (EMCC) has the highest NCLEX-RN pass rate in the state of Maine, so our students perform very in-depth research for a two-year program. In future work, I will be cognizant of broadening student’s minds concerning the biases that exist in healthcare research. The workshop leaders also encouraged us to search many types of populations while searching with students. Second, during the search activity, I learned about many databases I had never used. Embase, EthnoMed, MedEdPORTAL and SPIRAL were all new resources to me. EthnoMed proved perfect for the activity search because you could filter by population and location. These newly discovered databases will be helpful for not only assisting our nursing students, but other healthcare program students we have at EMCC. Finally, Eastern Maine Community College has a diverse student population. We serve many first-generation college students, veterans, distance education students, students with disabilities and non-traditional students. It is imperative that as the sole librarian, I am serving all students to the best of my ability without making assumptions about their needs, habits or abilities. I also oversee our student employees, so my plan is to also add some training for them on serving diverse populations. In addition, I am interested in offering this type of health bias course to our nursing instructors. I believe it would be of value to them in developing their courses.

Overall, I am very grateful to NNLM-New England for giving me the opportunity to attend ACRL 2019! I attended many wonderful sessions that will help in all aspects of my work including a session on assisting patrons with an Autism Spectrum Disorder, training student employees with future workplace skills and offering faculty mini-grants to partner with a librarian on an assignment. I look forward to using all of these tools in the future.

Categories: RML Blogs

Interested in Mental Health? Looking for a Great Conference? Check Out the AMHL/SALIS Annual Conference

Fri, 2019-05-03 16:07

What do you like most about your job?

A big perk to my job as an Education and Outreach Coordinator for the NNLM NER is that there are many opportunities to attend very interesting conferences.

Just last week, I was in Boston at the Countway Library of Medicine attending a 3-day annual conference of the Association of Mental Health Librarians (AMHL) and the Substance Abuse Librarians and Information Specialist (SALIS) organizations. For the third year in a row, these 2 organizations have combined their resources and efforts to put on an exceptional annual conference with engaging speakers and presentations about timely topics in the areas of mental health and substance use disorder.

The conference was small and provided opportunity to get to know a bit about each of the participants.  I met mental health professionals from across the US, as well as Canada and the UK.  They shared the work they do in following organizations —  Alcohol and Drug Abuse Institute at University of Washington, Hazelden Betty Ford Addiction Research Library, McLean Hospital – Belmont, Massachusetts, St. George’s University of London, Colorado Mental Health Institute at Fort Logan, Center on Addiction in New York City, Nathan S. Kline Institute for Psychiatric Research in New York, International Alliance for Responsible Drinking in London, University of South Florida, and University of Massachusetts Medical School. I felt honored to update the group about the outreach and education work the NNLM has been doing in New England. Over 3 days of  presentations I learned about cannabis legalization in Canada, how Art is being used as medicine, approaches to regulating alcohol marketing from a public health perspective,  how to engage minority populations in health research, the  history of mental health treatment in the US and UK, the work Louie Diaz is doing with the Middlesex Sheriff’s office in Lowell, Massachusetts providing outreach to those with SUD, we watched the documentary made about Louie – “Beyond the Wall,”, learned the true story of Phineas Gage (Google it, a fascinating story) and we received a sneak peak of a new mental health literacy project. Mentalhealthbridges, is a new website created through a multi-year NNLM grant. The site is due to go live in the next couple of months. It will be a terrific resource for consumers, as well as those involved with mental health education. This conference was the perfect lead into the month of May which is Mental Health month!

For more information about the Mentalhealthbridges website you can contact Len Levin

If you would like to know more about AMHL or are interested in attending next year’s conference (location TBD) consider joining AMHL

Categories: RML Blogs

Biomedical and Health Research Data Management Professional Development Scholarship

Tue, 2019-04-30 13:56

This is the first blog post in a series authored by several individuals who received professional development scholarships for completing the Biomedical and Health Research Data Management Training for Librarians. In this installment, a scholarship recipient, Jennifer Chaput, describes her professional development opportunity in data science.  For more posts about resources from this funding opportunity and views from other scholarship recipients please keep watch in the upcoming weeks.

Jennifer Chaput – STEM Librarian

In 2018, I participated in the National Network of Librarians of Medicine (NNLM) course “Biomedical and Health Research Data Management Training for Librarians”. This year the NNLM made available a training grant for members of that class cohort to pursue additional professional development. I received funding from this grant for a site visit with my course mentor at the NYU Health Sciences Library in New York City.

Along with three other members of my class cohort, I spent two days in March 2019 meeting with the NYU Health Sciences librarians, observing classes, meeting the NYU main campus Data Services team, and attending a symposium on data rigor and reproducibility at Columbia University.

The main portion of our site visit involved discussions with the NYU Health Sciences librarians to talk about their work and get perspectives and suggestions on how to offer successful research data programming and classes. For me, the most useful discussions were the ones on assessment of programming and on active learning ideas. We also discussed how to create a presence for data services at our institutions. Continued small steps and continually putting yourself out there in any way possible are the most important takeaways. These small steps will lead to more opportunities and connections over time, and though the pace may seem slow, looking back will allow you to see how your program has grown. I can see this myself in how much our program has grown in the year since I took the RDM 101 course, and I am looking forward to expanding more using the new ideas gained from this visit.

Our group also observed two classes taught by the librarians. In “Data Visualization in Excel for Biomedical Research”, we participated in the class as learners and came away with new tricks and tools in Excel to simply but effectively visualize data. This type of information is something that any researcher (or librarian!) can use and I look forward to incorporating this material into my work. We also observed a Research Data Management 101 workshop for first-year PhD students. Educating graduate students and early-career researchers on best practices for data management is essential to improving research data rigor and reproducibility and making data more open and accessible. I have been teaching a version of this workshop at my own institution and I got some helpful tips and updates of the material.

We also met with the main NYU campus Data Services team after a beautiful spring afternoon walk through some of New York City’s parks. It was interesting to see perspectives on how such a large institution manages their data services program. My institution has a much smaller data program and it was helpful to see how research data services could be scalable. It was also useful to see how they have integrated data services through the entire campus and include the humanities departments, not just STEM as is often a typical focus for RDM services.

The last day of the trip we attended “A University Symposium: Promoting Credibility, Reproducibility and Integrity in Research” at Columbia University. I greatly enjoyed hearing about the perspectives of the journal editors on the other side of the practice that I prepare researchers for during the session on “Journal Editor Perspectives on Rigor and Transparency”.  I also enjoyed the opening talk on “Recognizing Influences and Biases in Research” by Dr. Brian Nosek, which was engaging and interactive, and which helped us learn how our brain processes what we see and how difficult it can be to overcome what our brains are telling us.

The research data related training opportunities that have been provided by the NNLM National Training Office have been invaluable in my education and training as a data librarian, and in developing the research data management services at my library. I highly encourage anyone interested in further training to investigate the RDM courses and opportunities offered by the NNLM. My thanks to them for this continued education grant, and to our hosts at the NYU Health Sciences Library for a great trip!


For more about data science or other upcoming events, please visit the NNLM Data Driven Discovery Website and the  NNLM NER website, or contact anyone in the NNLM NER office.

Categories: RML Blogs

Resource Round-Up: New England Graphic Medicine ComicCon

Mon, 2019-04-22 14:31
 Poster boards with art produced by New England Graphic Medicine ComicCon attendees.

Art produced by New England Graphic Medicine ComicCon attendees.

As part of NNLM NER’s ongoing commitment to supporting the integration and expansion of graphic medicine in the outreach work of our partners, NER hosted the very well received New England Graphic Medicine ComicCon on April 10.

If you couldn’t attend or want a refresher on some of the resources presented, check out the links below to get caught up.  And thank you to all of our presenters for contributing to a successful and educational day.

Vermont’s own Rachel Lindsay started the day off by walking attendees through the process of creating her book Rx and the thought that went into all of the design choices from panel placement and lettering to character design. Listen to Rachel discuss her book at an event earlier in the month at Harvard.

Brittany Netherton and Matthew Noe (Matthew’s slides) shared their experiences creating and maintaining graphic medicine collections at their institutions and opened the session up to discussion.  Check out the links below for useful resources they shared:

A. David Lewis talked about creating a graphic medicine course, lessons learned, best practices and possible barriers. And he streamed it live, too. Check out the recording here.  He also makes his course presentations available on Youtube.  Check out the first presentation and find others on his Youtube channel.

To see what attendees had to say, check out the #NEGraphicMedCon tag on twitter or the round-up post by Jerry Kauppila from NNLM PSR.

If you weren’t able to attend, but are interested in giving feedback on ways NNLM NER can support graphic medicine, you can fill out the three question survey here:

Categories: RML Blogs

Tips to Co-Host/Run an Edit-a-thon

Mon, 2019-04-22 12:55

May 6th is fast approaching for MLA and the Spring NLM edit-a-thon.  We hope you’ve been keeping an eye on our WikiProject page <>, as we’ve been adding more training materials and event details! Our topic this spring is Health Disparities.  

If you can’t make it in person, consider hosting an edit-a-thon at your institution.  Training videos and guides with tips and steps to host your own edit-a-thon are available.

Why run an edit-a-thon? Listed below are just a few reasons
  1. It helps build the encyclopedia
  2. It builds relationships in the community
  3. It provides access to topic experts, and to offline source materials
  4. It encourages editors to learn from each other, and to learn by doing
  5. It entices people to become new Wikipedians
  6. It helps new Wikipedians contribute their knowledge and expertise
  7. Increase information literacy and access
  8. It gives you a reason to have a part
  9. It makes you feel good – you are helping make the world a better place
  10. It’s fun!

We have curated a list of resources for hosting your own edit-a-thon:

If you are hosting your own, we’d love to hear from you! If you plan on using the Outreach Dashboard to track participation, please be sure to link to the CiteNLM campaign.

We hope to see you in person or online #CiteNLM2019 on May 6 for the Spring NLM edit-a-thon!

Categories: RML Blogs

Register for the 2019 New England Science Boot Camp!

Wed, 2019-04-10 16:31

Join us for the 11th Anniversary of the New England Science Boot Camp for Librarians, to be held on June 5-7, 2019 at the University of New Hampshire in Durham, New Hampshire.

Science Boot Camp is an immersive experience that provides librarians with the opportunity to network with peers and learn about topics in physical sciences, health sciences, life sciences, and technology.

The themes for this year’s SBC science sessions are:

  • Assistive Technologies
  • Social Justice in Science
  • Remote Sensing

 To register, and to see more information about Science Boot Camp visit the NE Science Boot Camp page at:


This year, we will be awarding scholarships for current library school students, early-career science librarians, and library staff. The application form link is: Science Boot Camp Scholarship Application Form.

The link can also be found on the Science Boot Camp web site in a drop down menu from the registration page.

Categories: RML Blogs

April is Parkinson’s Disease Awareness Month

Mon, 2019-04-08 10:25










The blog post that follows was written by Saba Shahid, Chief Smiling Officer of The Art Cart. In May of 2018 The Art Cart received a Community Engagement Grant Award from the NNLM NER to create an online training program to about how use art as therapy for the symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease.

Parkinson’s Disease is a neurodegenerative disorder impacting dopamine producing neurons in the brain. Symptoms vary from person to person and may include rigidity of limbs, tremors, gait and balance problems, micrographia, and loss of fine and gross motor control. More than 10 million people worldwide are living with Parkinson’s Disease and approximately 60,000 Americans are diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease every year.

April is Parkinson’s Awareness Month! Every April organizations from around the world spread awareness about Parkinson’s Disease through advocacy, events, and special projects. The Art Cart is an organization based out of Worcester, MA that is doing just that.

As part of Parkinson’s Awareness Month, The Art Cart will be releasing the second edition of the Let’s Combat Micrographiaä interactive workbook. This workbook has been developed to improve micrographia or small handwriting in people living with Parkinson’s disease. Through a special collaboration with the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, a branch of the National Institute of Health, there is an additional Virtual Workshop series that will be available later this month to allow those with Parkinson’s and professionals treating people with Parkinson’s to learn how to improve this symptom. UMASS Medical School’s Lamar Souttier Library will have a copy of the second edition book available later this month.

Through Facebook, The Art Cart (@smilethroughart) is promoting awareness about Parkinson’s disease through their Smile Through Artä Workshops. They’re encouraging self-reflection and remembering how to live better with symptoms instead of feeling burdened by them. Participant, Tim MacMillian says, “I am stronger than Parkinson’s as Parkinson’s has taught me to always be strong, never give up, and to face the disease head on.” His wife, Deb MacMillian, says, “To be a caregiver means to be supportive, patient, and encouraging.” Hear their stories and many others by visiting The Art Cart’s Facebook page and website.

To learn more about The Art Cart please visit

Categories: RML Blogs

Protected: Librarians Supporting Nurses: Greenwich Hospital in Connecticut

Thu, 2019-04-04 16:25

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Categories: RML Blogs

Focused Outreach in Quiet Corner, CT

Mon, 2019-04-01 13:59


In each year of our five-year cooperative agreement with the National Library of Medicine, the New England region provides a special kind of outreach, called “Focused Outreach” to specified, medically-underserved areas in New England.  Bangor, Maine was identified as this year’s urban, focused outreach area and Quiet Corner, Connecticut was identified as the rural, focused outreach area. The purpose of the focused outreach is to identify and become acquainted with new community, health-related organizations and to address the health information needs these organizations identify as most important in their community.

The Education and Outreach Coordinators use a semi-structured interviewing method to conduct key informant interviews with the organizations they would like to glean information from. The interview questions are related to how community members get their health information and what are the most pressing health issues in their community. The next step is to implement a tailored approach to address the needs identified using the framework of the NNLM NER and its resources. Together the NER and those who participated in the interviews create a plan that often involves community “train the trainer” outreach education and projects, directed to health care and public health professionals, librarians,  and consumers.

My colleague Sarah Levin-Lederer and I have recently been involved in a successful focused outreach project in Quiet Corner, Connecticut.  Quiet Corner is also known as Northeastern Connecticut and it encompasses Windham County, eastern sections of Tolland County, and the Northern portion of New London County. Quiet Corner is more rural than southern or central Connecticut.

Map of Connecticut showing the Northeastern Connecticut. The region in blue and the Windham region in yellow. Both regions make up “Quiet Corner.”

July through August of 2018 Sarah and I conducted 12 key informant interviews. The needs the interviewees conveyed related to lack of resources for effectively treating those with mental health and substance use disorder challenges. Another need identified was the lack of reliable transportation for patients to get to health and dental appointments. Lastly, food insecurity and lack of resources to educate the community about best practices for healthy eating were identified.

With the help of the interviewers Sarah and I implemented 2 community events to address the needs identified. Quinebaug Valley Community College (QVCC) graciously hosted both of these community events. On February 22nd we held a Resource Sharing Day for those supporting patrons, clients, patients and students. In the morning, Gerry Thorington, LISW, from the State Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services presented strategies for providing the best possible service to a challenging population often suffering from mental health or substance use disorder health issues. We learned dialogue and participated in hands-on practice for active and reflective listening, validating emotions and achieving a win/win situation for all parties involved. Next, Sarah and I presented a brief overview of NLM’s consumer health website MedlinePlus as well as an introduction to the NLM and the NNLM. In the afternoon, each organization participating in Resource Sharing Day provided an overview of their services the resources they offer to the community. This exercise was eye-opening as many participants learned about resources they could draw on from their colleagues right in their own community.

The second event, Strategies to Alleviate Food Insecurity: Nutrition and Food Education from Cooking Matters, Connecticut was held on 3.29.19. Cooking Matters is a national program that works to ensure low income families have access to nutrition education, smart grocery shopping strategies along with hands-on food preparation techniques and recipes to eat healthy on a limited budget. Seventeen participants participated in this event learning about the MyPlate model for healthy eating, reading nutrition labels, and how to calculate the amount of sugar and fat are in our food based on the information provided on the nutrition label. We also put on our aprons and made our own lunch using some of the quick, nutritious and economical, chef-developed recipes Cooking Matters provides. We worked in groups preparing our lunch of Hummus, Fall Vegetable Salad, Yogurt Parfaits and Fruit Sodas. We all learned a lot about nutrition and enjoyed this “hands-on” opportunity to prepare some healthy and delicious food provided by this event.

If you are interested in making some of the Cooking Matters recipes, download the free Cooking Matters app for both IOS and Android devices.

Categories: RML Blogs

Save the Date Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon – #citeNLM

Tue, 2019-03-26 08:04

Save the date! We are gearing up for our spring Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon – #citeNLM – on May 6 and are looking to get the word out!

For this Edit-a-Thon we will be hosting an immersion session at MLA that will provide hands-on instruction in selecting Wikipedia articles and sources to use to improve content, and include a live editing session. In addition, people not attending MLA will be able to host a session at their organization or participate independently. Information about hosting an independent session will be following shortly.

Date: Monday, May 6, 2019

Topic: Health Equity

Project Page:

Tweet Sheet:

Hashtags to Use:


Categories: RML Blogs

All of Us Research Program Journey Bus coming to New England

Tue, 2019-03-26 08:01

The Journey, touring education exhibit for the All of Us Research Program is coming to New England this Spring 2019!

The Journey, the All of Us Mobile Education and Enrollment Center is also in need of host sites. For libraries interested in more information on this unique opportunity, contact Catherine Martin, NNLM All of Us Community Engagement Coordinator at To listen to a recording of Hailey (ID) Public Library’s experience in hosting the Journey last fall, click here.


  DATES                                 LOCATIONS

May 6 – 12                          Bridgeport CT & Middletown CT

May 13 – 19                        Danbury CT &  Stamford CT

May 20 – 26                        Boston MA

May 29 – June 1                Worcester MA

Categories: RML Blogs

Funded Project: HAMA Reaching Haitian Communities with Health Information

Thu, 2019-03-14 09:35

The following blog post was written by Brenda Lormil, a recent recipient of NNLM NER grant funding. Brenda shares the work she and her team are doing to connect Haitian community members across Massachusetts to primary care and health resources in Haitian Creole.

Group of teens who completed the HAMA training

Teens who attended the HAMA training to learn about the importance of primary care.

From May to October of 2018, Haitian American Medical Association (HAMA) had the rewarding opportunity to serve and present health education to members of the Haitian community in the greater Boston area. The forums were predominantly held in Haitian Creole, the native language of the people, in order to facilitate comprehension of the presented material. In total, 17 sessions were completed that targeted teenagers, adults, and senior citizens in the Haitian community. The importance of primary care was one of the prioritized focus points of our educational forums. 


When we began our project, it was our understanding that the Haitian community lacked primary care providers. We quickly learned that they do in fact have established care, however accessing the healthcare system is where the real problem resides. Language barriers, fear, suboptimal prior experiences, misunderstanding of the different levels of care (primary care vs. urgent care vs. ER) contributed to the lack of access to healthcare.


Many of the businesses, faith-based communities and schools had planned their summers in early spring. For this reason, we had to remain flexible and reschedule accordingly – an unexpected barrier during this project. This in turn caused us to extend our tour into October to accommodate certain locations (originally planned to end in August 2018).


We are most proud of the data collection we were able to obtain on our health education tour. We surveyed our audience after each session, and this allowed us to measure our impact and gain a better understanding of our communities needs. This information has now become a guide for HAMA in selecting topics of education for our 2019 health education tour. Yes, it was that good and we are doing it again! We thank our sponsor: National Network of Libraries of Medicine – New England Region (NNLM-NER) – for without their support this project would not be possible!

Group of Haitian seniors who completed the HAMA training

Haitian seniors who attended the HAMA training to learn about the importance of primary care.

Visit HAMA’s website, to learn more about the Health Tour and their other projects.

Categories: RML Blogs

Protected: Librarians Supporting Nurses: Treadwell Library at Massachusetts General Hospital

Mon, 2019-03-11 10:58

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Categories: RML Blogs

Preserving Long Term Institutional Memory

Wed, 2019-03-06 17:14

Does this sound familiar? Your institution’s records are relegated to boxes in a back room, basement or or simply tossed without review. Join us on Thursday, March 14th 2019, from 1:00 PM to 2:00 PM as we host Nadia Dixson, the Somerville City Archivist, as she presents, “How Did We Get Here: Maintaining Records for Long Term Institutional Memory.” Avoid costly mistakes, and even see a return on investment, by learning how to identify, preserve, and maintain appropriate historic records. This webinar introduces practical information and tools necessary to identify records of enduring value and start an archives program that will benefit your institution and preserve institutional memory.
Upon completing this webinar, you’ll be:
• Introduced to the essential elements of an archives/records management program
• Learn about appropriate goals for your institution’s archives program
• Learn about the value of including various types of records in an online archive
• Learn how one city solved the problem of making archival records available for easy access

This webinar is free and open to anyone interested, but advance registration is required. Please register at this link:

Categories: RML Blogs

Neurodiversity in the Workplace

Thu, 2019-02-28 16:28

“Alexis, what is neurodiversity?” She answers me, “Neurodiversity is the range of differences in individual brain function and behavioral traits, regarded as part of normal variation in the human population (used especially in the context of autistic spectrum disorders).”

When I read last week’s press release from Worcester Polytecnic Institute, “WPI Researchers Urge High-Tech Firms to Leverage Talents of Neurodiverse Workers,” I realized we have come a long way. My perception was confirmed when I read additional data on this topic.  The following statistics were cited in a recent article from  about the public’s attitude regarding children with LD (learning disabilities).

  • 79% of Americans believe that children learn in different ways.
  • 96% of parents think that with proper teaching kids can make up for LD.
  • The most positive finding: 8 out of 10 people agree that “children with LD are just as smart as you and me.”

When my son was struggling in school 20 years ago, the term “neurodiversity” didn’t exist. I wish it did! It may have paved the rocky road we had in K-12 , college (and continue to have in adulthood), with a little grease, so when we hit the bumps associated with a significant learning disability we could have slid over them instead of tripping and falling.

Here is the Press Release about the WPI research on the value of neurodiversity in the workplace that gives me hope for the many young adults out there struggling to be valued, as well as gainfully employed, and financially independent.

The research focuses on 5 arguments to encourage high-tech companies to invest in a neurodiverse workforce:

  • Neurodiverse employees often have specialized skillsets not always found in neurotypical or “normal” employees, such as excellent concentration, logic, and visual thought.
  • A workforce with diverse perspectives can help companies create products for a varied consumer base.
  • A growing demographic of neurodiverse people allows companies to be attuned to workforce trends.
  • Neurodiverse workers think and problem solve in different ways, which can lead to greater innovation.
  • Companies that proactively employ neurodiverse people may avoid the need for external agencies to impose quotas.

Did you know that one of the National Library of Medicine’s partner organizations is the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) ?

NICHD was founded in 1962, with a mission to investigate human development throughout the entire life process, with a focus on understanding disabilities and important events that occur during pregnancy.

Since then, research conducted and funded by NICHD has helped save lives, improve wellbeing, and reduce societal costs associated with illness and disability.

On the NICHD website you can find research as well as information about many health topics related to their mission.

Eleanor Loiacono, researcher and professor in the WPI Foisie Business School says that she hopes her research will help companies that are struggling with making their staff more neurodiverse.

“Including those who are neurodiverse in the high-tech workforce can contribute not only to a company’s bottom line and society’s call for greater diversity and inclusion, it can help promote greater mental health within a society that is facing one of the greatest mental health crises it has ever seen.”

Categories: RML Blogs

The NNLM NER e-Science Forum

Thu, 2019-02-28 16:12

The NNLM NER e-Science Forum will be held Friday, March 29thth, 2019, from 9:30AM to 3:30PM at the Holiday Inn® and Suites Marlborough, 265 Lakeside Avenue, Marlborough, MA 01752 ( This forum is taking place in lieu of the e-Science Symposium.

The purpose of this event is to initiate and maintain a regional dialogue on e-Science, identify ways libraries can better support patrons and researchers, and ways that libraries can deliver relevant and effective research data management services at their institutions. The theme of this year’s Forum is Research Data Management 2020 and 2030.

Have you ever wondered about research support methods and considered a data lab at your library? This year’s keynote speakers are: Amy L. Nurnberger, the Program Head of Data Management Services at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Daniel Sheehan, the Head of GIS & Statistical Software Services at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. This will be followed by lightning talks. The afternoon will consist of group breakout sessions where participants can engage in hands on activities visualizing what research data management practices will look like in the future. This is a great opportunity to network, gain a few new skills, and learn about recent developments in e-science librarianship.

9:30 – 10:00 AM Arrival, networking, light snacks
10:00 – 12:00 PM RDM 2020 – Speaker and project sharing (lightning talks)
12:00 – 1:00 PM Lunch & Networking
1:00 – 3:00 PM RDM 2030: Envisioning the Future: Challenges, Feasibility and Solutions: Hands on Workshop

This professional development event is free and open to anyone interested, but advance registration is required for all presenters and attendees, we have a limited capacity so please register now.

Register for the 2019 e-Science Forum at this link:

For any questions or any additional information please contact:
Karen Coghlan ( – 508.856.2223)
Martha Meacham ( – 508.856.1267)

We hope to see you there!

Have you implemented a Research Data Project and want to share what you know or learned about your projects with others? Consider presenting a lighting talk at the Forum. Please fill out a brief
Lightning Talk Proposal Form at:

Categories: RML Blogs

Fair Use Week

Mon, 2019-02-25 18:44

If you have ever published a paper in journal, digitized content for an online class,  created a physical or digital exhibition or are building an institutional repository, then you need to be aware of Copyright Law and the principle of Fair Use.  This week, Monday, February 25, through Friday, March 1, is the Association for Research Librarians,  Fair Use/Fair Dealing Week.  It is an annual, international celebration coordinated by the to promote the opportunities presented by fair use and fair dealing.  The U.S. Code 17 U.S. Code § 107.Limitations on exclusive rights: Fair use describes the details of fair use.   

Libraries including the NLM regularly champion fair use because it enables librarians to fulfil their primary mission of providing and preserving information.  The NLM Digital Collections provides access to historical books, photographs, images and maps. If you have not checked out the Profiles in Science section featuring prominent 21st century scientists and their stories, it is amazing.  When setting up your own online exhibitions, the NLM has a patron guide to copyright and historical content.

So how does copyright and fair use play a role in the current technology rich and data driven future?  The NNLM’s Research Data Management class promotes and supports the FAIR Data Principles, which proclaims that research data and digital products be Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable (FAIR).  As described in the NLM Strategic Plan which aims to promote the environment of utilizing data to advance medical education, biomedical research, discovery and data powered health.  This data mining to promote new discoveries and precision medicine requires the use of search engines, accessible databases, computer software, algorithms, and various application programming interfaces (APIs).  In September 2018 the ARL published the Code of Best Practice in Fair Use for Software Preservation to help provide guidance on archiving legacy software to ensure continued access in the future to digital files. It provides librarians, archivists, curators, and others who work to preserve software with a tool to guide their reasoning about when and how to employ fair use.

In the meantime celebrate fair use,fair dealing week.  Celebrate and fight for your right to access information since it is a precarious balance between copyright holders who may or may not be the original creators.  Be educated on your rights when publishing so you can use your own work when needed in the future to spark new innovations.


Categories: RML Blogs

ALA Midwinter – NNLM NER Professional Development Recipient Post 1

Wed, 2019-02-20 08:34

This the first in a series of blog posts authored by individuals who professional development grants from NNLM NER to attend ALA Midwinter 2019 and the preconference event “Implicit Bias, Health Disparities, and Health Literacy: Intersections in Health Equity“.


I received a Professional Development Award from the U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Network of Libraries of Medicine, New England Region, to attend the ALA Midwinter Conference in Seattle, WA, January 25-29. Award recipients attended the preconference institute on Friday, January 25, entitled Implicit Bias, Health Disparities and Health Literacy: Intersections in Health Equity. This half-day workshop introduced me to many of the programs, resources, and tools available through the National Network of Libraries of Medicine and other agencies. I was particularly impressed by Dr Kimberley Reynolds’ presentation on implicit bias and health disparities. Dr Reynolds gave an extremely illuminating talk in which we really engaged in the difficult, valuable, and essential task of identifying our own individual implicit and explicit biases; understanding why these exist; and unpacking ways in which to reduce these biases. The work I undertook with my fellow institute participants will continue to inform the work I do at my library to bring consumer health information to my community. I am very grateful to NNLM (New England Region) for granting me the opportunity to attend this institute and the ALA 2019 Midwinter Conference. We were encouraged to “dream big, start small, act”, and that is what I intend to do!

~ Natane Halasz, Leverett Library, Leverett, MA

Categories: RML Blogs