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The blog of NNLM Greater Midwest Region
Updated: 3 hours 20 min ago

Mobility for All, Bring Chair Yoga to Your Library

Mon, 2018-11-12 12:21


Effingham Public Library, a catalyst for positive change, is excited to partner with the Greater Midwest Region of the National Library of Medicine to bring a series of chair yoga classes to our small, rural community.

The “Mobility for All” project responds to the latest Community Health Profile Report for Effingham, Illinois, that found a prevalence of overweight adults in Effingham County – 41.7%- as opposed to 35.8% nationally.

Even more troubling was the continued increase of respondents who shared that over the past week they’d had no leisure time for activity.   Only 20.7% of Effingham County residents had participated in any physical activities or exercises like running, golf, gardening or walking for exercise.

Yoga practice is relatively new to our community and chair yoga with its gentle and balanced approach to building strength and coordination is a non-threatening approach to exercise that is approved by most health care professionals.

Our goals with this project are two-fold.  First, Chair Yoga provides a safe form of low-impact exercise for almost anyone that improves mobility function and reduces symptoms like chronic back pain.  Second, much of our older population that lives in our rural community lacks access to broadband resources so providing free opportunities to learn more about trusted self-care practices and resources is crucial and the National Institute of Health is the perfect partner for this project.

Partnership with the GMR has given us a chance to order and share print resources like the National Institute on Aging’s Healthy Eating After 50, Pain:  You Can Get Help, Exercise & Physical Activity, and the Workout to Go booklet with this group.

With a large clear space, armless chairs (folding chairs will work), and an instructor who is particularly excited to work with anyone, but especially older people, Chair Yoga is an obvious choice for libraries.  Participating libraries will provide their community a great new exercise opportunity, trustworthy health information and increase their programming numbers too!




Categories: RML Blogs

National Family Health History Day

Fri, 2018-11-09 13:46

Written by Erika Johnson. Erika is a health sciences librarian at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine & Health Sciences and a GMR Partner Outreach Librarian

Thanksgiving Day is just around the corner – a day when families gather to enjoy time together. Did you know that Thanksgiving Day is also National Family Health History Day? Chances are you will be seeing grandparents, aunts and uncles, and other family members who have important memories to share. What a great opportunity to start a conversation about your family’s health! Documenting medical and health information is an important part of protecting your family’s health in the future.

As librarians and information specialists, we can help spread the word about this often-overlooked element of family history. In September, I gave a presentation at a family history workshop. My session focused on how librarians can help genealogists locate and learn about their relatives. I also included a brief section on gathering medical and health information as an important component of a family’s history.

The 2018 workshop, “Over There,” presented by the Heritage Education Commission, was the organizations 43rd annual workshop. With planning already underway for the 44th annual workshop in 2019, I’m looking forward to focusing my next presentation on family health history and leaving the genealogy stuff the experts! There are many excellent resources available from the NNLM and other organizations. Here are just a few that I plan to use as I create my next presentation:


Categories: RML Blogs

Reading is Healthy Introducing the NNLM Reading Club

Wed, 2018-10-31 17:59

seven adults sitting in chairs lined against a wall reading a book

Book Clubs or reading groups are a staple of library outreach and literacy efforts. People gather to discuss Oprah’s picks or the New York Times’ Best Sellers to socially engage with literature and current events.

To help grow health literacy, the NNLM All of Us Community Engagement Network announces the launch of the NNLM Reading Club. The goal is to support libraries’ health literacy efforts and address local communities’ health information needs by celebrating important National Health Observances through the fun and intimacy of a book club.

The NNLM Reading Club offers a selection of three different book titles along with corresponding free, ready-to-use materials designed to help promote and facilitate a book club discussion on a health issue or topic. It’s easy to download the discussion materials and direct patrons to the library’s book holdings. However, the NNLM is offering an added benefit.

Beginning November 1st, participating NNLM libraries are making the quarterly Reading Club picks available in a free, handy, portable Book Club Kit. This program-in-a-box format includes 8 copies of each of the following items: the selected book, discussion guide, flyer, NIH MedlinePlus Magazine, NIH All of Us Research Program brochure and additional material in support of the health topic all of which are tucked inside a handy library book bag and shipped to the requesting library.

Any U.S. library that is an organizational member of the National Network of Libraries of Medicine is eligible to apply and to receive one NNLM Reading Club Book Kit from November 1, 2018 through April 30, 2019. Due to the limited supply of federally-sponsored NNLM Reading Club Book Kits, libraries that support outreach to vulnerable populations receive priority status.

Visit the NNLM Reading Club page to browse the November selections and download the ready-to-use materials or to order an NNLM Book Club Kit from a participating region.

Categories: RML Blogs

Rocking Midwest Chapter MLA!

Tue, 2018-10-30 22:00

Fall is a busy season for staff in the Greater Midwest Region office, this season took our team to exciting locations such as Traverse City, MI (cherry pies!), Springfield, IL (Lincoln!), St. Cloud, MN (Eh…Juno?), and Cleveland, OH (rock and roll!). In particular, our team worked hard to debut two new courses at the Midwest Chapter MLA meeting in Cleveland from October 5-8.

Precision Medicine course

Precision Medicine

One of these courses was Open Science for Health Sciences Librarians, which was developed by content expert, Erin Foster from Indiana University (not the University of Indiana, I get it, I get it) in partnership with Sam Watson from our office. The course provided an overview of the role of open science and its components in health sciences research, its implementation throughout the workflow of the research process, locating and creating open sciences policies for use at your institution, and assessing open source tools currently available.

The second course offered was Precision Medicine, which was developed by Dr. Colleen Campbell, Assistant Director of the Iowa Institute of Human Genetics, in partnership with office staff Sam Watson, Rachel Gatewood, and NNLM coordinator, Catherine Martin. The course provided participants with knowledge of genomics, an overview of the clinical applications of genomic medicine, an appreciation of the ethical and social issues inherent in the field and a review of NLM resources for health professionals and consumers. A highlight of the course was a role playing game which had course participants choose whether or not to pursue genetic testing.

Both courses received positive reviews – I’m proud of the hard work that our staff and content experts put into developing these! Didn’t have a chance to attend? We are hoping to develop both courses into an online format and to make these available to a wider audience. Keep an eye on our blog and training calendar!

Dancing at chapter meeting

Rocking out at Midwest Chapter MLA

Conference planners gave me a chance to present an update from our office, which I did while sporting my new Rock and Roll Hall of Fame t-shirt (for some context, the conference was rock and roll themed and t-shirts and jeans were encouraged). We exhibited at the meeting, always a great chance to connect with some of our health sciences library colleagues, and passed out Libraries Transform posters and stickers. Thanks to everyone who stopped by the booth! Stay in touch, and we’ll see you at the next meeting.

Categories: RML Blogs

So you want to be an outreach librarian? Spotlight on Erika Johnson

Wed, 2018-10-24 15:05

Once again we return to the farthest northwest corner of the GMR to great state of North Dakota, where not one but four partner outreach librarians make up the outreach team. today we spotlight Erika Johnson, Southeast Clinical Campus Librarian, University of North Dakota School of Medicine & Health Sciences. Erika_Johnson

1. How long have you been in the role of an outreach librarian?
I joined the University of North Dakota outreach team three years ago (2015).

2. How did you get involved in outreach?
Outreach has been assigned to the position I hold for some time. Within two months of beginning my duties as a clinical campus librarian, I participated in my first outreach exhibit at the 2015 North Dakota Library Association annual conference. I was fortunate to work with seasoned exhibitors Marcia Francis and Jacqueline Leskovec. They showed me the ropes and made the experience very enjoyable.

3. What is your favorite outreach project that you’ve done so far?
I can’t name a specific experience, but all of the conference presentations I have done on behalf of our outreach team have been fun. I enjoy the opportunity to share high-quality resources with teachers, librarians, health professionals, and the general public. At various conferences, these audiences have been so appreciative of the new resources I have presented. It is very rewarding to know that I have helped people in their work and in their knowledge of health topics.
4. What outreach activity do you hope to do in the future?

I hope to continue providing training at a variety of conferences. I’m also looking forward to the prospect of offering an Evidence-Based Medicine Training CE to allied health professionals in the Fargo-Moorhead area.

5. What is the one thing you wished you had known before you got started in outreach?
I can’t think of anything specific. I was very fortunate to join an established outreach team that is doing great work. They were able to pull me along from my first day on the team.

Categories: RML Blogs

Health Sciences Librarians of Illinois Annual Conference – Rivers of Data, Streams of Knowledge

Tue, 2018-10-23 10:18

The Health Sciences Librarians of Illinois received a GMR Professional Development award for 3 CE courses at the annual conference, held September 26-28 at the Cliffbreakers Riverside Hotel and Conference Center in Rockford, Illinois.

Attendees learned how to plan and develop working relationships in Building Partnerships with Faculty, Clinicians, and Other Stakeholders, with Gwen Wilson, the Health Informatics Coordinator/Librarian at Washburn University in Topeka, KS. Erin Foster, Data Services Librarian at the Indiana University School of Medicine provided information on Data Management in the Wild. A trio from the University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign, including Peg Burnette, Assistant Professor and Biomedical Sciences Librarian, Erin Kerby, Veterinary Medicine Librarian and Amanda Avery, a student at the iSchool inspired us to create or improve Your Online Professional Identity – Using Professional Profile Systems to Your Best Advantage.

Erin Foster addresses Data Management learning objectives 

Erin Foster addresses Data Management learning objectives

Gwen Wilson overviewing the course

Gwen Wilson overviewing the courseCourse evaluations were very positive and many learners had immediate plans to make use of what they learned. HSLI is grateful to GMR for the professional development funding, which helped our small organization provide excellent continuing education for members.

Amanda Avery, Erin Kerby, Peg Burnette, being introduced by Ramune Kubilius

Amanda Avery, Erin Kerby, Peg Burnette, being introduced by Ramune Kubilius

Categories: RML Blogs

Joint Conference of Librarians of Color (JCLC)– Chelsea Misquith, Ruth Lilly Medical Library

Tue, 2018-10-16 11:54

Thanks to the NNLM/GMR, I was able to attend the 3rd National Joint Conference of Librarians of Color (JCLC) this year in Albuquerque, New Mexico from September 26 – 30. JCLC is a joint initiative organized by the ethnic caucuses of the American Library Association (ALA): American Indian Library Association (AILA), the Asian/Pacific American Librarians Association (APALA), the Black Caucus of the American Library Association (BCALA), the Chinese American Librarians Association (CALA), and REFORMA: The National Association to Promote Library & Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish-speaking. Historically, it has taken place every 6 years, and so I was incredibly lucky and grateful to be afforded the opportunity to attend this year.

Photo Credit: Jennifer Jones
Image Description: Session attendees standing on either side of the screen with a slide titled “Transforming Communities through Health Outreach & Programming” projected onto it.


I started JCLC off by attending the pre-conference session titled “Transforming Communities through Health Outreach and Programming”, by Lydia Collins, Christian Minter, Kelli Ham, and Jennifer Jones. During this 4-hour session, we discussed different levels of engagement and ways to conduct health outreach, and we brainstormed some solutions to common challenges to doing this work. Some key resources I learned about are:

  • NLM’s HealthReach has patient education materials in multiple languages
  • National Institute on Aging’s Go4Life has resources about physical activity and aging
  • American Libraries Association’s LibrariesTransform campaign for resources, toolkits, trends on library services backed by research and data that will be useful for library advocacy and promotion
  • MEDLINEPlus also has pet health resources!!

Special shout out to Lydia Collins for bringing the energy to the early morning 8 AM session!

I also had the opportunity to visit the University of New Mexico Library and Archives and learn a bit about their Indigenous Nations Library Program (INLP). Through the INLP, Indigenous/Native students have access to a welcoming space that includes study spaces and customized instruction sessions, in addition to LibGuides specific to Indigenous/Native research and topics.


Photo Credit: Carla Bywaters
Image Description: Me, standing in front of the desk in the West Wing reading room at the University of New Mexico Library.


Ana Ndumu’s session on “Engaging and serving Black immigrant communities” was a wealth of information and knowledge as well. Through the course of her session, I learned that the biggest information-related issue affecting Black immigrant communities in the US is Information Overload. During her research on Black immigrants’ information behaviors, she found some broad themes in the answers given by her focus group participants:

  • Compliance and Advancement: The information landscape is ever-changing, so they felt like they were constantly struggling to catch up with new information.
  • Concerns over Fake News
  • Ideas of “the public”/ministries: In their home countries, people don’t generally turn to public services (universities, etc) unless in need, so “public” libraries are assumed to be working for the government. This can lead to a distrust of libraries/library programs.
  • Importance of Community
  • Decentralized Information: It can be overwhelming and confusing to have multiple options to find information about something. For example, having different procedures for applying for an official document online vs. over the phone vs. in-person.

Here are her tips on what those of us in libraries can do to cater our services towards Black immigrants:

  • Continue doing what we are doing
  • Provide life management tools – how to use apps, information resilience (giving patrons the space to let people know when they feel overwhelmed by information)
  • Remember that personal narratives matter
  • Think about strengths, not deficits – don’t just focus on “Americanizing” people
  • Stay abreast on issues affecting Black immigrants
  • Pursue partnership (not intervention) and resilience (not remediation) – work together with their existing experience/credentials
  • Recruit Black immigrants to the Library and Information Sciences (LIS) profession – may be a great second career

For more information on her research and other resources, Ana Ndumu’s toolkit is available at

One poster that really stuck out for me was the one on the Virtual Blockson project by Jasmine Clark at Temple University. She has been working to convert the Charles L. Blockson Afro-American collections into Virtual Reality (VR), and she spoke about concerns over long-term preservation and accessibility as they relate to VR.

These are just a few snippets of the wonderful initiatives that I’ve learned about through JCLC. I appreciated how Black, Indigenous/Native, and other people of color were centered during this conference, and our experiences considered valid and real and not up for debate. Special shout out to this sign, pasted by Jennifer Brown, Jennifer Ferretti, Sofia Leung, and Marisa Mendez-Brady, outside their JCLC session titled “We Here: Community Building as Self Care”, which reads-


everything being made and said in this room is rooted in believing the narratives of people of color and recognizing systemic oppression.”

Photo Credit: Jennifer A. Ferretti


Being surrounded by immensely talented people of color in LIS who’re working on innovative projects has been incredibly inspiring for me, especially as an early-career librarian of color. I’m also happy to have made some amazing new LIS friends, as well as getting the opportunity to meet up with an old one. I’m glad that I will not have to wait another 6 years for the next JCLC, as they’ve announced that it will be held in 2022 (location TBD)! I’m looking forward to it!

Chelsea Albuquerque Chair

Categories: RML Blogs

Upcoming Webinar: Addressing Latino Health and Wellness Disparities

Mon, 2018-10-15 11:57

Addressing Latino Health and Wellness Disparities Through Virtual Community Health and Wellness Workshops

10/24/2018 – 1:00 – 2:00 PM

This session will provide attendees with background information about the Latino community both in the United States and in Minnesota. An overview of current demographics and health issues will be covered. The presenters will then describe how they designed, implemented, and evaluated the virtual health and wellness workshop series*, covering mental health and wellness topics, targeting the Latino community in rural Minnesota towns. The session will wrap up with considerations that other organizations can use when targeting outreach efforts to the Latino population within their local and hard-to-reach rural communities.

To register, please visit:

This session will be presented by Carla Kohler, Manager of Community Health Services and Dr. Benjamín Feigal, Director of Mental Health Services at CLUES (Comunidades Latinas Unidas en Servicio).

*This workshop series was developed with funding support from the Greater Midwest Region.

Categories: RML Blogs

Now accepting applications for Quarter Three Professional Development Award

Mon, 2018-10-08 11:18

Background/Purpose: The purpose of this award is to assist individuals working in GMR Network member organizations to enhance their ability to use NLM resources or keep current on topics related to NIH initiatives.

Eligibility:  Individuals working at organizations that are Network members within the Greater Midwest Region (GMR) are eligible to apply. For information on membership and to apply, visit our Members page. Membership is free!

Potential Projects: 

    • Attend a professional meeting and enroll in continuing education sessions on health information
    • Attend a workshop on searching for systematic reviews for health sciences librarians that utilize PubMed.
    • Sponsor an instructor to offer a CE session on National Library of Medicine resources at a state or regional meeting for public librarians.
    • Attend a professional meeting and enroll in continuing education sessions on health information

Amount:  Up to $2,500

Additional Funding Information:  All Professional Development awards are made on a cost reimbursement basis.

Funding Period:  Awards will be offered on a quarterly basis and on a first come first serve basis until funding for that quarter is expended.

This award supports the mission of the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, to advance the progress of medicine and improve the public health by providing all U.S. health professionals with equal access to biomedical information and improving the public’s access to information to enable them to make informed decisions about their health. Learn more and apply here.


Categories: RML Blogs

GMR Welcomes Back UIC as an Outreach Library

Mon, 2018-10-01 11:06

The GMR is pleased to announce that the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) Library of the Health Sciences (LHS) is once again active in our Network outreach. UIC becomes the second Partner Outreach Library (POL) in Illinois, joining Southern Illinois University School of Medicine in Springfield. Congratulations, UIC LHS!

UIC librarians, as do our other Partner Outreach Librarians, will help the GMR identify potential outreach opportunities in the state; train consumers, public librarians, unaffiliated health care providers, and other Illinoisans in health information access; exhibit and promote NLM and NIH resources, as well as those of NNLM and UIC.

Carmen Howard, UIC LHS-Peoria, is the designated POL for UIC LHS. However, since UIC has libraries in Chicago, Rockford, Urbana, as well as Peoria, other librarians will also assist in outreach.

You can meet up with our latest POL librarians at the 2018 Illinois Library Association Annual Conference, Peoria Civic Center, Peoria, IL, October 9-11, 2018.

Categories: RML Blogs

Self-paced Online Health Information Searching Resouce for the Public

Wed, 2018-09-26 12:10, the Public Library Association’s collection of short self-directed tutorials for the public to increase their digital literacy, now features a course all about researching health topics on the Internet. Developed in partnership with the National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM), the new course was designed to help learners understand and evaluate health information while avoiding potentially harmful or misleading sources. Consider linking this course on your library or organization’s website and social media.

View the course here.

Categories: RML Blogs

Stand Up for Health, successful preconference at the Association of Rural and Small Libraries

Wed, 2018-09-19 11:29

On September 12 over 70 library staff members from across the US, including as far as Hawaii gathered for a full day preconference of Stand Up for Health: Health and Wellness for Your Community at the Association of Rural and Small Libraries (ARSL) in Springfield, IL. The day is divided into four sections:

  • introduction to consumer health
  • health reference
  • health resources,
  • health and wellness programming and outreach

with break-out sessions and role-playing.

photo of the room at the preconference. Attendees are talking amongst themselves

The in-person version of Stand Up for Health meets for a full-day session and uses a Moodle companion site to assist with introductions, and 2 hours of preconference work, 2 hours of post-conference work, and ongoing discussion.

2018-09-12 10.56.49

The response from attendees is overwhelmingly positive. Including this email:

It was great! I look forward to going through the books that we got and to figuring out the best way to implement what I learned in our community. I’ve already had an occasion to use the line, “it’s not a time to talk about our personal stories, but a time to listen and help others.”

Geoff Pettys presenting at the

The preconference was made possible in part by a funding award from the Greater Midwest Region (GMR). Instructors included:

  • Bobbi Newman, Community Engagement and Outreach Specialist, NNLM, GMR
  • Carolyn Martin, Consumer Health Coordinator, NNLM Pacific Northwest Region;
  • Geoff Pettys, Head, Reference & Educational Services, Southern Illinois University School of Medicine, NNLM Partner Outreach Library, Greater Midwest Region; and
  • Debbie Stanton, Public Services Supervisor – Information & Learning, Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library, Topeka, KS, Consumer Health Information Specialist, Level 1

All participants who attended the in-person preconference session and complete the required pre and post work will receive a 12 credit Continuing Education (CE) certificate from the Medical Library Association (MLA) and be eligible to apply for the Consumer Health Information Specialization (CHIS) from MLA. The NNLM sponsors the application fee.

As part of our ongoing partnership with the Public Library Association and supplement funding from NNLM, the Greater Midwest Region (GMR) has developed a course on health information services for public library staff. To develop this course we partnered with WebJunction and the Public Library Association (PLA) to incorporate feedback from public library participants and best practices for online learning. The final course is designed as a cohort experience for public library staff whether in-person or online.

Categories: RML Blogs

Public Library Spotlight: Erin Lewis, Acquisitions and Interlibrary Loan, McCracken County Public Library

Tue, 2018-09-18 16:45

Picture1Name: Erin Lewis

Title: Acquisitions and Interlibrary loan

Education: Nearing the end of my MSLS degree

How did you become interested in focusing on Health and Wellness?

Exercise and being active plays a vital role in my life. I feel so much better when I exercise and I want to help others realize the benefits of an active lifestyle.

What’s the impact that you hope to make in your community?

I hope to help my community find ways to incorporate exercise into everyday life.

What is your favorite health related program or outreach that you’ve done? 

Pedal in Paducah. I love to ride my bicycle and was so excited when we had over 60 people attend our first library bike ride.

Categories: RML Blogs

Big Data in Healthcare: Finding Your Niche

Mon, 2018-09-17 12:39

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: Brenda Fay, Library Specialist, Aurora Libraries – Aurora St. Luke’s Medical Center

For librarians in health science libraries, big data in healthcare might be something of a stranger. Sure, we know that data is being collected about patients, but how do we librarians fit in? Depending on what type of library you work in, whether you’re a solo librarian, and perhaps even your comfort level learning new skills, knowledge and familiarity with data and data practices may or may not be something in your wheelhouse. I work in a large healthcare system within a team of fourteen librarians and library staff. Our institution has a research arm that is growing and growing, and yet none of us have really been involved in big data or data management practices at our institution. I don’t think that’s very unusual for a place that isn’t also an academic medical center. Can healthcare big data be overwhelming? Yes. Is big data in healthcare worth all the fuss? Yes.

Why should health science librarians get involved with big data in healthcare? With the ever-growing interest and use of data all around us, data isn’t going away anytime soon. Librarians are great at continually staying on top of trends and changes in our field, and I truly believe that health science librarians will become more and more involved, in one way or another, with data initiatives at their institutions. It’s better to be in front of the curve and helping guide the conversation, than trying to catch up when the ship has sailed. Learning about big data will keep librarians relevant. If we look at skills librarians already have, like organization and classification, taxonomies and metadata, those could immediately be leveraged into increasing the quality of research data management practices at our institutions by working with researchers on their data management plans, which many need to include on grant and funding applications. We should also get involved because there are so many free training opportunities available to us from MLA, NLM, and others. If MLA and NLM/NNLM think big data is worth supporting on such a large scale, I am onboard, too.

How might health science librarians get involved with big data in healthcare? This is much trickier and depends a lot on the situation you find yourself in. You might not be able to start any of these activities today or even next year, but knowing how other health science librarians work with big data in their institutions can inspire you to find a way where you are. Reference questions might lead you to big data. If you’ve ever been asked to find data, Kevin Read and his NYU librarian colleagues have created a data catalog (NYU Health Sciences Library, n.d.) for those looking for data sets to use, or for researchers to publish their own data. Assisting on systematic reviews or publications might lead you to big data. A 2018 study looked at Google Trends, an online source for accessing trends in Google’s search data, and laypeople’s searches for asthma (Mavragani, A, K, & KP., 2018). It had some methodological issues that a librarian would have likely pointed out right away. Building relationships with library users might lead you to big data. Librarians at NU Health Sciences Library had conversation with basic and clinical researchers at their institution to learn more about their data needs. These conversations allowed them to tailor library services to fill a gap in “community’s data issues including, but not limited to, the challenges they face when collecting, organizing, and sharing their research” (Read, Surkis, Larson, McCrillis, & Nicholson, 2015).

I firmly believe that working with big data in healthcare will raise the profile of health science librarians and the libraries they work in.


Mavragani, A., A, S., K, S., & KP., T. (2018). Integrating smart health in the US health care system: Infodemiology study of asthma monitoring in the Google era. JMIR Public Health and Surveillance, e24.

NYU Health Sciences Library. (n.d.). Data catalog. Retrieved August 29, 2018, from

Read, K. B., Surkis, A., Larson, C., McCrillis, A. G., & Nicholson, J. X. (2015). Starting the data conversation: informing data services at an academic health sciences library. Journal of the Medical Library Association, 131-135.

Categories: RML Blogs

Apply Today! Biomedical and Health Research Data Management Training for Librarians

Wed, 2018-09-12 17:06

Health sciences librarians are invited to apply for the online course, Biomedical and Health Research Data Management Training for Librarians, offered by the NNLM Training Office (NTO). The course is a free, 7-week online class with engaging lessons,  practical activities and a final project. The course runs October 15 – December 14, 2018.

The goal of this course is to provide an introduction to data issues and policies in support of developing and implementing or enhancing research data management training and services at your institution. This material is essential for decision-making and implementation of these programs, particularly instructional and reference services. Course topics include an overview of data management, choosing appropriate metadata descriptors or taxonomies for a dataset, addressing privacy and security issues with data, and creating data management plans.

 Applications are due September 20, 2018.

 Additional details and the online application are available here.

 For questions, please contact the NTO:

Categories: RML Blogs

Public Library Spotlight: Tina Viglucci, Hispanic Services Director, Gail Borden Public Library

Tue, 2018-09-11 09:56

photo of the front of Gail Borden Public Library

Name: Tina Viglucci

Title: Hispanic Services Director

Education: MSIS University at Albany, SUNY

How did you become interested in focusing on Health and Wellness?

Through collaborations with partners in our community including the two major hospitals in the area, Presence St. Joseph and Advocate Sherman. They are leading efforts to bring together organizations to actively engage our Latino community in being aware of health related issues including nutrition information and diabetes prevention and treatment.

Why is health literacy important in your community?

We all lead incredibly busy lives and focus our attention on jobs, errands, what needs to be done to survive each day. Yet we know being proactive about our health is essential, so we must look for ways to provide information in relevant, engaging and accessible ways.

What’s the impact that you hope to make in your community?

To prevent disease and promote physical and mental health for ourselves and our children.

What is your favorite health-related program or outreach that you’ve done? 

The 6-week workshops we held with Presence St. Joseph Hospital to help reduce obesity in children were particularly informative and enjoyable. Children participated in cooking and exercise activities while their parents learned about nutrition and healthy eating habits. They all came together at the end of each program to eat what the kids had prepared and talk about what they experienced and learned. The kids received chefs hats at the end and the parents took home binders with all the week’s lessons and recipes. Everyone had a great time!

Categories: RML Blogs

Native Voices: An Exercise in History; Collaboration and Fun

Thu, 2018-09-06 09:49

Native Voices: Native Peoples’ Concepts of Health and Illness is a traveling exhibition that explores the interconnectedness of wellness, illness and cultural life for Native Americans, Alaska Natives and Native Hawaiians.  This past summer, The University of Cincinnati had the opportunity to host the exhibit while collaborating with a series of speakers.  Here is an overview of the success of the exhibit and their programming, from Associate Director of Donald C. Harrison Health Sciences Library & Henry R. Winkler Center for the History of the Health Professions, Lori Harris:

The University of Cincinnati was honored to be selected as one of the host sites for the Native Voices: Native Peoples’ Concepts of Health and Illness exhibition.  With a planning committee that consisted of faculty from the College of Medicine, Department of Biological Sciences, faculty librarians, archivists and various community partners, our goal was to highlight Native American History and Culture as it related to the Cincinnati Ohio region.

Our inaugural event focused specifically on 3-5 year-old children and was held in the University of Cincinnati’s main library – Langsam Library.  We hosted 24 children from the Arlitt Child & Family Research & Education Center, which serves preschool children from diverse cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds.  The program included dramatic skits that introduced a brief play about the Iroquois legend of the Three Sisters and its corresponding gardening tradition.  There were also activity stations and multi-media fun held in our Student Technology Resource Center (STRC).

Video was taken of children in front of a green screen and was then superimposed onto an image of the Great Plains and an American Indian village complete with moving buffalo.  The children never once lost interest and each child was presented with a parting gift of the book entitled:  D is for Drum:  A Native American Alphabet by Debbie and Michael Shoulders and Irving Toddy.  There was an accompanying exhibit of Native American children’s books from the University of Cincinnati’s Children’s Collection.

On Thursday, July 26, Dr. Suzanne Singer launched the Native Voices exhibit opening with a keynote presentation.  After introductions by Xuemao Wang, Dean, University of Cincinnati Libraries; Philip Diller, MD/PhD, Chair and Fred Lazarus Jr Endowed Professor of Family and Community Medicine; and Bleuzette Marshall, PhD, Vice President for Equity and Inclusion at UC Dr. Singer, an Energy Systems and Thermal Analyst in the Computational Engineering Division at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in Livermore, CA was introduced.  Her talk focused on the intersections between land, energy, and health in the Navajo community.  Attendees were encouraged to visit the exhibit and enjoy some of the catered hors d’oeuvres after Dr. Singer’s talk. In addition to the Native Voices exhibit, a supplementary poster presentation also ran concurrently with the exhibit and was on display alongside the Native Voices listening stations. The posters were a capstone project from a UC Medical Botany class taught by Theresa M. Culley, Ph.D. and Eric Tepe, Ph.D during spring semester, 2018. The posters examined how Native Americans used indigenous plants to maintain health and hygiene throughout the Ohio Valley.

Throughout the 6-week period the University of Cincinnati Libraries hosted keynote speakers that included professors and historians from the University of Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky University; as well as lecturers from the Lloyd Library and Cincinnati Museum Center.

This experience has given the University of Cincinnati an opportunity to broaden current relationships with local universities and colleges as well assisting us in building new partnerships with some of our local and regional community partners who have an interest in the history and relationship of Native Peoples in the Ohio region.

Categories: RML Blogs

Public Library Spotlight: Susan Kroll, Charlevoix Public Library

Tue, 2018-09-04 09:47

Interior of the Charlevoix Public Library

Name: Susan Kroll

Education: MLS University of Buffalo

How did you become interested in focusing on Health and Wellness?

Received my BS degree in education for physically handicapped children which sparked my interest in health issues.  My previous job was at the Health Sciences Library Ohio State University.

Why is health literacy important in your community?

Our small rural community faced serious health challenges. The more the Library can educate patrons with health information the greater the chances of patient compliance. This is especially important in the winter months when the cold, snowy weather isolates members of the community who then must depend upon themselves to make the right health choices.

What’s different with a health reference interview?

Most patrons approach the reference desk with hesitation knowing they want an answer to a health question but not necessarily prepared to hear the answer. The questions I receive are usually very complex and deal with personal issues. I try to provide some initial immediate information and then do follow up research which I either send electronically or meet with them personally depending on their preference.

What’s the impact that you hope to make in your community?

Over the years I have been fortunate to partner with the health department and local hospital on various programs which I believe adds credibility to the Library’s work. The shared goal is to help patrons make better health choices and understand how to manage their health issues.  Since I work part-time, I do in-service programs for the Library staff on identifying quality health information so that knowledgeable librarians are always available.

What is your favorite health-related program or outreach that you’ve done? 

The program was titled Vitamins, Supplements and Medicine, Oh My!

Local physicians were concerned about the number of patients that might be taking supplements but not telling their health professionals. There were 2 goals for the workshop:

  • Educate patrons on potential interactions between supplements and prescription medicine
  • Identify ways to check on the quality of ingredients in the supplement
Categories: RML Blogs

New On-Demand Courses Focus on Serving Diverse Communities

Fri, 2018-08-31 08:05

Three new on-demand courses are now open for registration! The one-hour courses can be taken in one sitting or over the course of several sessions and each offers 1 MLA CE credit upon completion. The courses are part of a series that focus on working with diverse populations. Content may be of interest to health sciences librarians, but also to faculty and students working in areas such as public health, social work, and nursing, as well as public librarians and other health professionals. Please consider taking the courses yourself, and then encouraging others who you think would benefit from the content and resources. Learn more about each course and register using the links below:

  1. Accessing Health Information in Multiple Languages
  2. Finding Data on Health Disparities
  3. Building Cultural Competence and Humility into the Workplace
Categories: RML Blogs

Public Library Spotlight: Juanita Harrell, Health & Wellness Librarian, Oak Park Public Library

Tue, 2018-08-28 16:29

Juanita Harrell holding the book "A People's History of Chicago"Name: Juanita Harrell

Title: Health & Wellness Librarian

Education: MLIS Dominican University

How did you become interested in focusing on Health and Wellness?

I’ve always been interested in Health & Wellness & was given the opportunity to make it my area of concentration.

Why is health literacy important in your community?

Making information available and accessible to the general public about health and wellness is beneficial to both the providers of services and the members of the community.

What’s different with a health reference interview?

In a health reference interview you have to take into consideration the sensitivity of the information that the patron is seeking. You also have to be able to give information without giving actual advice.

What’s the impact that you hope to make in your community?

To introduce our patrons to information and services that they may have not been aware of. Also to introduce providers to a new or different clientele.

What is your favorite health related program or outreach that you’ve done?

I’m new to my position so I don’t have a favorite yet. The month of September will have a lot going on. The local food co-op is doing a presentation on bulk shopping and herbs and spices, a local yoga sanctuary is starting a monthly midday meditation and several physicians are doing presentations on advocacy, gi health, and allergies.

Categories: RML Blogs