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The blog of NNLM Greater Midwest Region
Updated: 27 min 57 sec ago

Questionable versus Reliable? Navigating the Biomedical Scholarly Publishing Landscape – at Midwest MLA

Tue, 2019-11-12 10:33

The Midwest Chapter of MLA is grateful to the GMR for providing an expert speaker grant to support one of the educational options for the Midwest MLA 2019 conference. The conference, which was held in early October, took place in Milwaukee, WI. The expert speaker grant enabled the Professional Practice committee to offer the class “Questionable versus Reliable? Navigating the Biomedical Scholarly Publishing Landscape. This course provided attendees with basic knowledge to assist in evaluating biomedical search results and helped participants explore the many facets of today’s publishing landscape.

Our expert speakers and course instructors were Carolann Lee Curry and Anna Krampl. Both work at the Mercer University School of Medicine’s Skelton Medical Library. Carolann is a reference, outreach, and assessment librarian and Anna is the Head of Public Services. Both Carolann and Anna are also active in the Georgia Health Sciences Library Association (GHSLA) and are members of the Southern Chapter of the Medical Library Association (SC/MLA).

Evaluations of the course were very positive. Those who attended the course were particularly excited about the time spent working through examples and visiting actual journal websites. One participant noted “I learned much more than I expected about how to provide guidance to patrons about individual publication and publishers. Another added “I am so grateful to have someone knowledgeable talking us through the many shades of gray”.

Support from the GMR is invaluable in helping us to make opportunities like this available to our members.

-Guest post by Angie Tucker

Categories: RML Blogs

NIH Requests Public Comment on a Draft Policy for Data Management and Sharing and Supplemental Draft Guidance

Fri, 2019-11-08 16:55

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has released a Draft NIH Policy for Data Management and Sharing and supplemental draft guidance for public comment.  The purpose of this draft policy and supplemental draft guidance is to promote effective and efficient data management and sharing that furthers NIH’s commitment to making the results and accomplishments of the research it funds and conducts available to the public. Complete information about the draft Policy and draft supplemental guidance can be found on the NIH OSP website.

Stakeholder feedback is essential to ensure that any future policy maximizes responsible data sharing, minimizes burden on researchers, and protects the privacy of research participants.  Stakeholders are invited to comment on any aspect of the draft policy, the supplemental draft guidance, or any other considerations relevant to NIH’s data management and sharing policy efforts that NIH should consider.

To facilitate commenting, NIH has established a web portal that can be accessed here. To ensure consideration, comments must be received no later than January 10, 2020.

For additional details about NIH’s thinking on this issue, please see Dr. Carrie Wolinetz’ latest Under the Poliscope blog: NIH’s DRAFT Data Management and Sharing Policy: We Need to Hear From You!

NIH will also be hosting a webinar on the draft policy in the near future.  Please stay tuned for details.

Questions may be sent to

Categories: RML Blogs

UC Libraries and IT@UC Partner to Bring Renowned NLM Data Scientist to Campus

Tue, 2019-11-05 16:18

By Melissa Previtera and Don Jason

On September 17th and 18th, Dr. Lisa Federer, Data and Open Science Librarian for the National Library of Medicine (NLM), visited the University of Cincinnati as part of the Data and Computational Science Series (DCS2).

During her visit, Dr. Federer shared her expertise in the field of biomedical research data and data visualization through a lecture, a hands-on workshop, and meetings with various data and informatics leaders.

Dr. Federer’s lecture “If You Share it, Will They Come? Quantifying and Characterizing Reuse of Biomedical Research Data” encouraged individuals to think about how they are not only sharing and reusing data but how patterns of reuse can influence curation and preservation. She presented her talk in the Henry R. Winkler Center for the History of the Health Profession’s Stanley J. Lucas, MD Board Room. Dr. Federer hosted a luncheon at the same venue. During the luncheon, she answered questions about her lecture and had in-depth conversations with UC faculty and researchers.

Lisa Federer engaged with participant learning

After the luncheon, Dr. Federer taught a hands-on workshop titled “Endless Forms Most Beautiful: Creating Customized Data Visualization with ggplot2 in R.” The workshop was held in the Donald C. Harrison Health Sciences Library’s Dr. Stanley B. Troup Learning Space. The workshop addressed the importance of clear communication, effective visualizations, and accessibility for colorblind individuals. Dr. Richard Johansen, Data Visualization Specialist, and Mark Chalmers, Science Librarian, served as teaching assistants for the workshop.

During Dr. Federer’s time in Cincinnati, she served as the keynote speaker for the Cincinnati Area Health Sciences Library Association’s (CAHSLA) annual meeting and served as a guest speaker at the UC Libraries Faculty Meeting. She presented a talk titled “Beyond the Data Management Plan: Expanding Roles for Librarians” to both audiences. This talk gave a synopsis of emerging data science competencies for the library workforce. The talk provided a roadmap of trainings, webinars and classes librarians could complete in order to gain these professional skills.

Dr. Federer’s visit was a huge success – bringing together attendees from a variety of academic disciplines and research interests. The DCS2 planning committee hopes Dr. Federer’s visit starts conversations, expands professional networks and is the catalyst for future collaborations.

Don Jason, Health Informationist, served as site coordinator for Dr. Federer’s visit. He received logistical support from Melissa Previtera, HSL/ Winkler Center Term Librarian, Assami Semde, HSL Circulation Desk Coordinator, and Lori Harris, Interim Director of the Health Sciences Library.

The DCS2 planning committee would like to thank Dr. Federer for sharing her extensive knowledge and skills with the UC community. The committee would also like to thank UC Libraries’ Research & Data Services, the UC Digital Scholarship Center, and the UC Institute for Interdisciplinary Data Science, for meeting with Dr. Federer during her visit. Finally, we would like to extend our sincerest gratitude to the Office of the Provost for funding the DCS2.

The DCS2 is a collaboration between UC Libraries and IT@UC. The series provides the UC research community with innovative workshops and distinguished speakers on advanced research data topics. Please visit the DCS2 Website to register for upcoming lectures and training sessions.
The NNLM is grateful for the outreach and engagement work of our NNLM members. If you have a program or project to share, please email us at

Categories: RML Blogs

New Project Funded to Explore Public Health and Public Library Partnerships

Wed, 2019-10-30 14:39

The GMR is excited to announce that the Institute for Public Health Practice at the University of Iowa College of Public Health has been awarded funding for its project: Information Collaboration: Bringing Public Health Organizations and Public Libraries Together.

This project will provide resources and educational opportunities that highlight the benefits of collaboration between public health organizations and public libraries. The project will begin with a thorough assessment to fully understand the needs, interests, barriers, and opportunities for collaboration between public libraries and public health. The assessment will consist of four stages:

  1.     Establishing an Advisory Board
  2.     Conducting a Scoping Review
  3.     Collecting both Quantitative and Qualitative Data
  4.     Analyzing the Results

The results of the analysis will assist in the collection of existing materials and tools that can feed the development of practical toolkits to support both public health and public library organizations in developing partnerships.

Categories: RML Blogs

Michigan Health Sciences Libraries Association Conference: Navigating into Public Health Resources

Mon, 2019-10-28 12:34

The Michigan Health Sciences Libraries Association (MHSLA) received a GMR Expert Speaker Award for our annual conference in Lansing, Michigan, October 2-4, 2019. Thanks to the award, we were able to bring Cecilia Vernes to the conference, where she offered a Continuing Education course, True North: Navigating your way to Freely Available Public Health Resources. Ms. Vernes is the Education Coordinator for the NNLM National Public Health Coordination Office at the University of Massachusetts Medical School’s Lamar Soutter Library. Her course at the MHSLA conference was attended by academic health sciences librarians, hospital librarians, and non-librarians who are interested in or have roles relating to public health. Ms. Vernes discussed NLM resources such as Toxnet, PHPartners, and PubMed, as well as other freely available online public health resources such as GreenFILE. She also walked us through the process she uses to find and appraise public health literature and offered a case study from her own recent work on PFAS in drinking water (unfortunately especially relevant to Michigan residents).

MHSLA is grateful to GMR for the Expert Speaker Award, which helped us to bring an out-of-state CE instructor to our relatively small regional conference. Course attendees walked away with an improved sense of how to find less accessible resources, literature, and documents related to public health issues.

Categories: RML Blogs

Illinois Prairie District Public Library – The Illinois PraiREAD

Tue, 2019-10-08 11:38


In September and October of 2019, the Illinois Prairie District Public Library hosted its first “big read,” cleverly titled The Illinois PraiREAD. The chosen title was The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon. This title was chosen in part because a local community theatre was staging the play in the fall. Additionally, it helps the library highlight offerings for patrons with autism.

There were many events held at the library over the eight-week period. Fifty copies of the novel were given away and two book clubs used the title for the month of October. Additionally, due to the convenient timing of the theatrical endeavor, tickets to performances were raffled off to patrons at each branch. All story hours during the two months included sensory-friendly elements. Finally, a guest speaker with autism was invited to speak.

The guest speaker was funded with a grant from the National Network of Libraries of Medicine Greater Midwest Region. Thanks to the grant, we were able to bring in a local speaker with experience presenting her story nationwide.

Marty Murphy is an adult with Autism Spectrum Disorder, who presents Finding Normal “nationally to provide parents, school peers and educators a better understanding of the world of autism.” The presentation was uniquely adapted to speak to library staff, patrons and the cast and crew of the neighboring production.

Whether it be books or celebrities about or with autism, recognizing certain behaviors or creating welcoming and inclusive spaces, Murphy was extremely well-received and everyone in the audience took something different away from the presentation.

-Guest post by Joel D Shoemaker, Director of Illinois Prairie District Public Library

Categories: RML Blogs

TOXNET Website to be Retired, Most Content Will Remain Available

Wed, 2019-09-25 09:33

On December 16, 2019, the National Library of Medicine (NLM) TOXNET (TOXicology Data NETwork) website will be retired. Most content will remain available through other NLM databases as well as from external websites.

TOXNET has served as an integrated system of toxicology and environmental health information. The most frequently used databases are being incorporated into three NLM core resources: PubChem, an open chemistry database; PubMed, a resource for biomedical literature; and Bookshelf, a free online resource to access books and documents in life science and healthcare.

Several resources in TOXNET came from other organizations, such as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and will continue to be available from those sources. Some databases will be retired.

The TOXNET transition page provides a list of its databases and how to access their content. Please check that page and the NLM Technical Bulletin for updates.

If you have questions, please contact NLM Customer Support at

Categories: RML Blogs

IUPUI Library Recipient of All of Us Ambassador Award

Fri, 2019-09-13 16:58

The IUPUI University Library is one of five award recipients of the 2019-2020 NNLM All of Us Ambassador Program. Funding for this program is the result of a partnership between the National Library of Medicine (NLM) and All of Us, a National Institutes of Health (NIH) research program that seeks to enroll one million or more people living in the United States to accelerate breakthroughs in precision medicine and to advance treatment and prevention. Learn more about the National Network of Libraries of Medicine and the All of Us Research Program partnership at

IUPUI University Library will receive $96,184 to support the consumer health needs of Indianapolis residents, which will be used to empower citizens to make more informed health decisions and to be more involved in their individual medical care. It also will highlight the importance of consuming quality, nutritious food and give Indianapolis residents tools to grow their own produce in safe, uncontaminated soil, and teach them how to use diet to control common health problems such as high cholesterol. “This award will help us address the major problem of food deserts and food swamps in Indianapolis, which contribute to poor health outcomes for many of our local communities. By contributing some solutions to food insecurity, we also hope to empower citizens with health information to create positive changes in their daily lives,” says Caitlin Pike, the principal investigator, and a health sciences librarian at IUPUI.

The grant will serve as a vital link between the NNLM All of Us Community Engagement Network, Indianapolis Public Library (IndyPL), community organizations, and individuals from across Marion County. Over the next year, Caitlin Pike, Mahasin Martinson, and Rachel Hinrichs will plan and host a series of health education programs for the public at three IndyPL branches. In partnership with community non-profit organizations, they also will conduct public programming around nutrition education and avoiding heavy metal contamination while urban gardening at the Southport Branch, the Brightwood Branch, and the Eagle Branch.

The three branch libraries were chosen for monthly programming due to their locations in traditionally marginalized Indianapolis communities, and they include a series of presentations on nutrition-related health topics that are relevant to the branch populations, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and maternal and child health.

IUPUI and the IUPUI University Library have a long-standing commitment to community engagement and outreach. This award allows for continued investment in those relationships and the betterment of the Indianapolis community.

About IUPUI University Library

IUPUI University LIbrary

IUPUI University Library

The University Library is central to the mission of IUPUI, one of the best urban universities, recognized locally, nationally, and internationally for its achievements. The University Library is a public academic library. Any state resident with a valid I.D. is eligible for a library card. With one million patron visits a year, plus staff and resources that support all of IUPUI’s more than 250 degree programs, the IUPUI

University Library is a vital partner for the campus and the community. The library’s resources include signature collections like the Joseph and Matthew Payton Philanthropic Studies Library, the Ruth Lilly Special Collections & Archives, and the Herron Art Library, plus over 80 digital collections. These unique online repositories contain digital images of historic documents and objects and were created with the help of collaborative partners

NNLM All of Us Logo

Categories: RML Blogs

Greater Midwest Region & The University of Iowa Partner Host the All of Us Journey

Fri, 2019-09-13 11:37

The GMR office was thrilled to host the All of Us Journey  for 3 days last week in partnership with the University of Iowa. The Journey made a stop at the UI Health Sciences Campus, the Main Library and the Iowa Children’s Museum from September 5-7. It was exciting to engage with a large and varied audience to bring awareness to the All of Us program.

Thanks to all of our partners listed below!

  • Campus Recreation & Wellness Center
  • Department of Biology
  • Hardin Library for the Heath Sciences
  • Iowa Children’s Museum
  • Iowa Institute of Human Genetics
  • Lichtenberger Engineering Library
  • University of Iowa Libraries

    Visitors at the Iowa Children’s Museum location had the opportunity to make their own health button.

    The Iowa Children’s Museum provide story hour where participants received a free copy of the book

    All of Us Journey’s stop at the UI Health Sciences Campus

Testing out the virtual reality technology provided by the UI Engineering Library

Categories: RML Blogs

Wayne State University Receives NNLM All of Us Ambassador Award

Thu, 2019-09-12 15:59

The Greater Midwest Region of the National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM) has announced the Wayne State University Vera P. Shiffman Medical Library as an award recipient of the 2019-2020 NNLM All of Us Ambassador Program. Funding for this program is the result of a partnership between the National Library of Medicine (NLM) and All of Us, a National Institutes of Health (NIH) research program that seeks to enroll one million or more people living in the United States to accelerate breakthroughs in precision medicine and to advance treatment and prevention.

LaVentra E. Danquah

LaVentra E. Danquah, Librarian IV – Principal Investigator/Project Director, Vera P. Shiffman Medical Library, Wayne State University

The Wayne State University Vera P. Shiffman Medical Library will receive up to $100,000 to create a community of health information advocates throughout Detroit. “Rooted in health literacy, health citizenship, and patient advocacy, health information advocates use information strategically to advance their health towards an intended goal,” notes LaVentra E. Danquah, librarian and principal investigator for the grant awarded to Vera P. Shiffman Medical Library. Soon, LaVentra will work with new and long-term partners to offer Detroiters various educational offerings while building awareness of the NIH All of Us Research Program, a precision medicine initiative. A portion of the award will fund a part-time project assistant who will help develop training and informational sessions for the Detroit Public Library, Michigan’s largest public library system. The grant will enable Shiffman Medical Library and its partners to continue to enrich the lives of the community with access to key health information deemed important by the community.

Vera P. Shiffman Medical Library has served the health information needs of metro Detroiters for well over 20-years including ten years as a Partner Outreach Library for the National Network of Libraries of Medicine Greater Midwest Region (NNLM GMR). Working with a dedicated and exemplary Library Outreach Advisory Council, Shiffman Medical Library has a reputation of offering content-rich programs on local health issues featuring leading health and medical experts. “Shiffman library is extremely excited by this opportunity to collaborate with the NNLM in bringing unique educational programming to southeast Michigan. The All of Us grant will be instrumental in helping us achieve our goal of developing informed health citizens in our diverse communities,” states Sandra I. Martin, Library Director, Vera P. Shiffman Medical Library.

Learn more about the National Network of Libraries of Medicine and the All of Us Research Program partnership at

NNLM All of Us Logo

Categories: RML Blogs

Explore National Immunization Awareness Month with the NNLM Reading Club

Mon, 2019-08-05 14:25

Book cover images of selected August titles

August is National Immunization Awareness Month, a National Health Observance which provides a key opportunity to highlight the importance of getting recommended vaccines at all ages.

The Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention reminds us that every year children and adults become seriously ill and are hospitalized because of diseases that vaccines can help prevent, like whooping cough, cancers caused by HPV and pneumonia. This year’s measles outbreaks are a key reminder of how quickly diseases can spread when people aren’t vaccinated.

The NNLM All of Us Community Engagement Network is pleased to announce its three book selections in support of National Immunization Awareness Month:

  • On Immunity by Eula Bliss
  • Vaccines Did Not Cause Rachel’s Autism by Peter Hotez
  • The Vaccine Race by Meredith Wadman

To learn more about each of these titles and to download book discussion guides, promotional materials and corresponding vaccine and immunization information, or to apply for a free NNLM Reading Club Book kit, visit the Book Selections and Health Resources: Vaccine Health.

NNLM All of Us CEN Co-branded logo

Categories: RML Blogs

Libraries as Recovery Centers: a free CE opportunity from the GMR

Fri, 2019-08-02 13:00

Are you interested in an amazing opportunity to learn to work with librarians, first responders, health professionals, and the public in emergencies for free?

The Midwest Chapter of the Medical Library Association (MLA) invites you to attend special training in the field of disaster information and planning at the joint WHSLA*, SWHSL*, and Midwest Chapter MLA Annual Meeting in Milwaukee, WI, on October 5, 2019. These courses support libraries as recovery centers in their communities. In the morning session, you will learn how your organization can play an important role in making your community more resilient to disasters such as floods, tornadoes, civil unrest, and extreme temperatures. Participants in the afternoon session will develop a disaster response plan with specific actions to put the plan into practice. Attendees are not required to be members of Midwest Chapter MLA, WHSLA, or SWHSL and may attend either or both sessions.

The National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM) Greater Midwest Region (GMR) is sponsoring local public librarians, emergency planners and/or responders to attend the training. By attending both the morning and afternoon sessions and working independently to complete the free online required courses, participants will be eligible to earn the MLA Disaster Information Specialist designation, sponsored by the GMR.

The registration fee for one or both of the in-person disaster preparedness classes at Midwest MLA 2019 will be provided by the GMR as a first-come, first-served basis. Priority will be given to local public librarians, first responders, or public health professionals. Only the cost of the sessions for eligible participants will be sponsored–not registration for the conference or travel/lodging costs. Applications must be received by 30 August 2019.

How to Apply
Please complete this form, and we will notify you of acceptance and further instructions for registration.

For more details about the conference, see Midwest Chapter/MLA, WHSLA, AND SWHSL 2019 Annual Meeting.

Contact Jacqueline Leskovec for more information:

* Wisconsin Health Science Library Association (WHSLA) and the Southeastern Wisconsin Health Science Library Consortium (SWHSL).

Categories: RML Blogs

AAHSL/PNR-NNLM Research Data Professional Development Award

Fri, 2019-07-26 09:04

A new professional development opportunity has been released for individual at AAHSL institutions that are interested in building their professional capacity to support research data knowledge! The 2019-2020 AAHSL/PNR-NNLM Research Data Professional Development Award program provides those selected with an opportunity to attend or experience a professional development activity related to research data knowledge and receive up to $2,000.00 in support of that activity (travel, hotel, registration, per diem).

All applications must be submitted by September 1, 2019. Applicants will receive notice of their award by mid-October. Travel and required documentation must be completed prior to April 30, 2020

Application form:

Categories: RML Blogs