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News from the Northwest and Beyond
Updated: 3 hours 33 min ago

April PNR Rendezvous: Learning Data Visualization

Wed, 2019-04-10 04:23

Data is everywhere and trying to make sense of it can be overwhelming and complex but also revealing. Data visualization helps to communicate more clearly the significance of the information. How to do that? Come and attend the April session of the PNR Rendezvous to learn some tips and tricks from staff from the University of Washington Health Sciences Library and the National Network of Libraries of Medicine’s National Evaluation Office.

Below are the details of when and how to join the webinar.

Date: Wednesday, April 17

Time: 1-2PM (Pacific) | 12-1PM (Alaska) | 2-3PM (Mountain) | 3-4PM (Central) | 4-5PM (Eastern) | 11AM-12PM (Hawaii)

Presentation: Tips and Tricks for Learning Data Visualization

Data visualization in the health sciences can help reveal insights and trends that might otherwise go unnoticed. A clear visualization can convey more information than an endless spreadsheet. However, learning new tools can be challenging, especially if it’s your first time tackling a subject. Data visualization tools, in particular, can have high learning curves and it is easy to get overwhelmed with all of the resources and tutorials available. This PNR Rendezvous session will discuss tips and tricks for learning data visualization. The tools we will be focusing on are Tableau and ArcGIS.

How to join the session: Registration is encouraged but not required. Complete information to log on is available on our PNR Rendezvous web page

We encourage you to join the live session but it will be recorded for viewing within a week.

Categories: RML Blogs

RDM in the Big Apple!

Mon, 2019-04-08 15:53

We are very excited and pleased to share this guest post by Kathryn Vela, the Washington State University’s (WSU) Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine’s (ESFCOM) Health Sciences Librarian.  Kathryn was selected through a competitive application for professional development funding from the National Training Office (NTO), to participate in a mentoring opportunity having completed the NNLM online training course RDM 101: Biomedical and Health Research Data Management Training for Librarians.  Welcome Kathryn!

As a health sciences librarian with an interest in data, I was extremely excited to be part of the first cohort of the online course “Research Data ManagementA picture of Kathryn Vela in NYC. for Biomedical and Health Science Librarians” in early 2018. It was a delightfully educational experience, and as an unexpected bonus, I was eligible to apply for funding from the NTO to continue my research data management (RDM) education. I submitted a proposal for and received funding to visit the NYU Health Sciences Library and learn from their data services team. I wasn’t the only one with this idea; three other librarians from my cohort were also interested in an NYU site visit, and so we coordinated to plan the trip together.

The site visit was a two-day event, with a third day spent at a symposium at Columbia University. Much of this time was spent discussing how the NYU HSL data services have developed over the last few years, including the Data Catalog Collaboration Project. We (i.e. the visiting librarians) also shared how we were engaging in data services at our own institutions. These conversations gave us the opportunity to learn from some data experts, ask questions, and share ideas.

We also had the chance to sit in on two different classes provided by the NYU librarians. One class was part of a larger research course and provided an overview of basic RDM practices, and the other was about creating data visualizations in Excel. Since I would like to provide more data-related instruction, this was incredibly beneficial and gave me a lot of ideas to incorporate into my own work.

The symposium at Columbia University was called “Promoting Credibility, Reproducibility and Integrity” and featured a number of enlightening panel discussions on topics like transparency in scientific journals and bias in research. I enjoyed the opportunity to attend thisA picture of the New York City skyline.symposium while I was in New York because it gave me some interesting insights into the inner workings of academic research.

Overall, it was a whirlwind trip, but I definitely came back with a brain bursting full of new knowledge and ideas to try at my institution. Since most of my RDM learning has taken place online, it was nice to have the opportunity to talk to other like-minded people face to face, and to see RDM expertise in action. The NYU data librarians were welcoming and informative, and I greatly appreciate their support for this site visit.

Categories: RML Blogs

Data Flash: The Impact of the NIH-NLM-NNLM in U.S. Communities

Mon, 2019-04-08 10:53

A picture of the physical building of the National Library of Medicine.

April 7th-13th, 2019 is National Library Week. The American Library Association’s (ALA) National Library Week theme is simple, but compelling: how libraries equate to building strong communities.

In honor of National Library Week, the NNLM PNR’s Dragonfly will go back in time and explore the origins of the National Library of Medicine (NLM) and the National Networks of Libraries of Medicine.

The NLM, located on the NIH campus in Bethesda, MD, was founded in the year 1836 as the Library of the Surgeon General’s Office, the medical literature repository of the U.S. Army Surgeon General. It is the world’s largest biomedical library and has been searched billion of times by millions of people around the world. NLM also founded and funds the National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM).

The historical formation of the NNLM goes back to 1965 when it was called the Regional Medical Library (RML) Program and consisted of 11 regional medical libraries. The RML Program was the manifestation of the 1965 Medical Library Assistance Act, which authorized the NLM to provide grant funding to improve the condition and potential of American medical libraries; among the many grants that came from the Medical Library Assistance Act, a grant for the development of a national systems of regional medical libraries was given to the NLM.

It wasn’t until 1990, that the RML Program became what is known as the NNLM.  The current overarching mission of the NNLM is to “provide all U.S. health professional with equal access to biomedical information” and to “improve the public’s access to information to enable them to make informed decisions about their health”.

Last year in 2018, the NNLM and the Public Library Association (PLA) forged a new partnership that increased public library workers’ knowledge and skills related to consumer health services, called the “Promoting Healthy Communities Initiative”.  In 2017, the NNLM was honored to be selected as a community partner of the National Institutes of Health (NIH)’s All of Us Research Program which has a mission to accelerate health research and medical breakthroughs enabling individualized prevention, treatment and care. All of Us will partner with one million or more people across the United States to provide the most diverse biomedical data resource in history. All of Us will make this resource available to all researchers, helping them to gain better insights into the biological, environmental, and behavioral factors that—separately and combined—influence health.

PLA has now joined forces with NNLM to promote NIH’s All of Us Research Program. and work together with public libraries to increase “health literacy, address health research inequities, and strengthen community partnerships with health advocates and providers.”

The NNLM is proud of the PLA partnership, a strong reminder of how libraries build strong communities of health through such collaborations and outreach. Happy National Library Week everyone!!! Enjoy being a part of your community and effectively, your medical/health sciences/public library!

Categories: RML Blogs

Consumer Health Minute: Celebrate National DNA Day

Tue, 2019-04-02 02:09

Congress approved the first National DNA Day in April 2003 to celebrate both the completion of the Human Genome Project and the anniversary of the discovery of the double helix structure of DNA. The National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) continues to celebrating DNA Day annually on April 25. The goal of National DNA Day is to offer students, teachers and the public an opportunity to learn about and celebrate the latest advances in genomic research and explore how those advances might impact their lives.

Libraries can provide information to the public, to local schools and visiting homeschoolers about DNA Day activities and events provided by the National Human Genome Research Institute. Visitors to the website will be able to:

  • find events in your area and across the country
  • download the activity starter kit to plan an event at your library
  • view activities to do in your library, schools, or for patrons to do at home

One of the featured activities is titled, “Everything You Need to Know About Getting DNA Out of Strawberries“. This low cost activity uses common materials and the strawberries can be either fresh or frozen. Complete instructions are provided in both English and Spanish. Prefer not to host the activity? Just provide copies of the instructions for patrons to take home and try. Either way it provides a fun interactive opportunity for the public to learn more about genetics.

Categories: RML Blogs

Women’s History Month – The Literature of Prescription: Charlotte Perkins Gilman and the “Yellow Wallpaper”

Mon, 2019-03-25 06:42

In observation of Women’s History Month, each week of March the Dragonfly will feature a National Library of Medicine exhibit that highlights the history of women in health, science, and society. This week highlights a significant feminist publication and its author in “The Literature of Prescription: Charlotte Perkins Gilman and the ‘Yellow Wall-Paper’

Charlotte Perkins Gilman was born in 1860 and was a writer, lecturer, and feminist who fought for women’s rights in society and in the home. She wrote prolifically on the subject of women’s issues especially focusing on the inequality of women by challenging the reasoning and basis for women’s restricted role in society. She wrote Women and Economics which not only called for changes in marriage and family but also stated that women could not be truly independent if they were dependent on their spouses or other male family members. Soon after the birth of her daughter, Gilman experienced depression and received treatment from well known physician, Silas Weir Mitchel. He prescribed a treatment of rest which often included isolation from friends and family, a special diet, and massage and electrotherapy.  As one of many medical and scientific experts who debated “the woman question,” he defended the notion of significant differences between the sexes and argued that an epidemic of neurasthenia, or nervous exhaustion, was rife among women who attempted to exceed their natural limits. Gilman felt the treatment made her worsened her health later wrote a semi-autobiographical short story, The Yellow Wall-Paper,  as an indictment of the medical profession and the social conventions that restricted women’s professional and creative opportunities.

Literature of Prescription NLM exhibit

Originally submitted to the Atlantic Monthly, it was immediately rejected. It was published more than a year after it was written, in The New England Magazine, in January 1892. While some 19th-century readers did appreciate the message hidden in The Yellow Wall-Paper, the story also resonated with many in the women’s movement of the 1970s. Since their rediscovery of the tale, the text has been republished many times, continuing to intrigue readers. Thanks to Charlotte Perkins Gilman, progress towards women’s health and independence was made even after her death in 1935.

The online exhibition features a range of resources for educators and students, including lesson plans developed by classroom teachers for middle and high school courses, a higher education module developed by a scholar working in the discipline for undergraduate and graduate students and instructors, educational online activities, and additional resources.

The Literature of Prescription is also a traveling exhibit which your library or organization may wish to host. Learn more about booking the exhibit on its Book An Exhibition web page.

Categories: RML Blogs

Announcing New NNLM All of Us Funding Opportunities

Wed, 2019-03-20 18:20

image of a coinUnder cooperative agreement with the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM), and in partnership with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) All of Us Research Program, the NNLM PNR is pleased to request proposals for a new round of funding opportunities. The awards are designed to support  outreach projects to support health literacy and community engagement about the NIH All of Us Research Program. Preference will be given to proposals submitted by public libraries, or to organizations with plans to collaborate with a public library partner.

NNLM PNR member organizations in Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington are eligible to apply.   If your organization is not currently a member, it’s easy to join!

If you intend to submit an application for either award, we need a Letter of Intent no later than Wednesday, April 3, that provides a brief summary of the project you will propose and the type of award you will apply for.  Please send  your Letter of Intent to and include the type of award in the subject line.  The deadline for submitting your completed application for either award is May 1, 2019 at 3:00 Pacific Time.

Keep reading to find brief descriptions and links to detailed information about these funding opportunities.

NNLM All of Us Community Engagement Award

2 or more awards, each up to $100,000

Goals of the award include:

  • To improve consumer access to high quality health information.
  • To support health literacy education and outreach.
  • To raise the public’s awareness of the All of Us Research Program.
  • To improve understanding and importance of participation in clinical trials, including the All of Us Research Program.

NNLM All of Us Health Literacy Outreach Award

2 or more awards, each up to $19,000

Goals of the award include:

  • To increase awareness of the NIH All of Us Research Program.
  • To increase health literacy education and outreach.

For tips about programming ideas and resources you may want to incorporate in your proposed project for either of the 2 above awards, watch this recording featuring Michele Spatz, NNLM PNR All of Us Engagement Coordinator.

We want to fund good ideas and hope to see proposals from all states of the NNLM PNR!

If you have a question, please drop us a line ( We welcome all questions and input.

Categories: RML Blogs

Women’s History Month – Confronting Violence: Improving Women’s Lives

Mon, 2019-03-18 06:05

In observation of Women’s History Month, each week of March the Dragonfly will feature a National Library of Medicine exhibit that highlights the history of women in health, science, and society. This week highlights domestic violence as a significant health issue through, “Confronting Violence: Improving Women’s Lives“.

What is domestic violence? The National Domestic Violence Hotline defines it: “Domestic violence (also called intimate partner violence (IPV), domestic abuse or relationship abuse) is a pattern of behaviors used by one partner to maintain power and control over another partner in an intimate relationship.” Domestic violence affects individuals who are married, single, young and old. It does not discriminate according to religion, culture, race, sexual orientation, or gender. Nor do educational or socioeconomic levels matter.

According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, in the U.S. about 20 people per minute are physically abused by an intimate partner, domestic violence accounts for 15% of the total violent crimes, and over 20,000 phone calls are place on domestic violence hotlines each day. Victims experience a number of physical, mental and heath affects including high rates of depression and suicidal behavior and only 34% receiving medical care who are injured by intimate partners.

Confronting Violence NLM exhibit


Through the exhibit, Confronting Violence: Saving Women’s Lives, the National Library of Medicine highlights the role of nurses in identifying domestic violence as a significant health issue when other medical professions and society did not. Beginning in the late 1970s, nurses were in the forefront as they pushed the larger medical community to identify victims, adequately respond to their needs, and work towards the prevention of domestic violence. Through both their research and practice, nurses saw firsthand the epidemic of violence in women’s lives and were able to create and implement some of the first hospital protocols for treating women who were battered. By the 1990s, all the major medical organizations recognized domestic violence as a significant health issue. Yet, despite these changes the work of ending domestic violence still continues. As organizations and as individuals we must continue to work to support and empower victims of domestic violence and improve women’s lives.

Information about this exhibit is also available through a recorded presentation  at NLM when the exhibit first opened.

Confronting Violence is also a traveling exhibit which your library or organization may wish to host. Learn more about booking the exhibit on its Book an Exhibition web page. A 18 minute recording about program/activity ideas when hosting this exhibit is available to view.

Want to visit the exhibit? It will be at Pullman Regional Hospital library in Pullman, WA February 3 – March 14, 2020.

Categories: RML Blogs

Data Flash: Healthy Paradigm Shifts – Hacking Behavioral Health’s Future

Fri, 2019-03-15 16:06

Computer code and an open book

What is a healthcare hackathon? Generally speaking, a healthcare hackathon is a social event that focuses on building small and innovative technology projects that aim to resolve healthcare challenges. “Hackathon” is a portmanteau of the words “hack” and “marathon,” which in turn translates into some kind of race against the clock to solve challenges.

MIT Hacking Medicine founded in 2011, is made up of MIT students and community members with the goal of innovating the healthcare community and driving new medical innovations. The MIT group meet this goal by carrying out innovative events like healthcare hackathons; amazingly, they host more than 80 healthcare hackathons a year. MIT Hacking Medicine even has a free handbook that serves as a resource for anyone interested in hosting similar kinds of healthcare hackathons in their respective communities.

Here in the Pacific Northwest Region, Washington State University’s (WSU) Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine (ESFCOM) Hackathon is very much inspired by the MIT Hacking Medicine model of healthcare hackathons, with a few interesting modifications. Their first hackathon in 2018 tackled the theme of addressing rural health challenges in Washington State, with prizes awarded to the top three hackathon teams at the event. Building off that success, WSU will be hosting another healthcare hackathon from April 12th – 14th, with the overarching theme of innovating solutions that will tackle behavioral health challenges, a pressing issue in Washington State today.

WSU welcomes patients, students, faculty, developers, caregivers, and more to attend their second healthcare hackathon. What makes the WSU ESFCOM healthcare hackathon unique from other healthcare hackathons is the research and reference presence of academic librarians who provide research services to the hackathon participants throughout the event.

Applications to participate in the ESFCOM Hackathon are due by April 5th, 2019. For more information about this exciting Washington State event, please contact WSU’s College Technology Incubator Officer Andrew Richards.

Categories: RML Blogs

Consumer Health Minute: National Health Observances

Thu, 2019-03-14 09:00

One way to easily incorporate health programming and health information at your library is highlighting national health observances. A number of resources are freely available and 2 of those are highlighted here.

Recently the National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM) put together resources for public libraries that align with National Health Observances throughout the calendar year. Though it is mid March, libraries can still incorporate images and resources in social media and online content but can consider using next year as well. Upcoming NNLM classes and webinars are also listed that relate to the monthly observance which library staff can attend to learn more the featured health topic. Many webinars are recorded for viewing when more convenient. Stay tuned for future national health observances content. provides toolkits for National Health Observances. Tips for your patrons are provided as are ways for libraries and organizations to raise awareness regarding a particular health condition or topic.

Categories: RML Blogs

March PNR Rendezvous- Climate Change and Health

Wed, 2019-03-13 04:12

One topic of conversation that is often considered more neutral is the weather. However, that has changed over the years as the focus sometimes centers of extreme weather or talks of hotter summers, more storms, melting glaciers, etc. These conversations are now sometimes turning into heated debates and we may not always understand the science of climate change and how that affects our lives. The next PNR Rendezvous webinar session will be focusing on climate change and how it is not only affecting those in Alaska but also those in other parts of the country.

Our speaker will be Michael Brubaker, Director of Community Environment and Health, Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium, who has been working in the Alaska Tribal Health System for over twenty years. His areas of focus include health impact assessments, climate change, environmental health and achieving safe, healthy sustainable communities.

Below are the details of when and how to join the webinar.

Date: Wednesday, March 20

Time: 1-2PM (Pacific) | 12-1PM (Alaska) | 2-3PM (Mountain) | 3-4PM (Central) | 4-5PM (Eastern) | 11AM-12PM (Hawaii)

Presentation: Climate Change and Community Health in Rural Alaska

This session provides an overview of climate change in rural Alaska, the impacts on the environment and observed health effects. The presentation includes specific community examples, and also explores some examples of adaptations that are being applied in Alaska through the tribal health system. Effects of climate change on health in general will also be addressed.

How to join the session: Registration is encouraged but not required. Complete information to log on is available on our PNR Rendezvous web page

We encourage you to join the live session but it will be recorded for viewing within a week.

Categories: RML Blogs

All of Us Research Program Speaker Series

Tue, 2019-03-12 04:00

The All of Us Research Program will launch a Speaker Series in partnership with the National Library of Medicine on Thursday, March 14 at 4:00 p.m. PT with an inaugural talk by National Institutes of Health Director Dr. Francis Collins. Dr. Collins will discuss the importance of All of Us, how far the research program has come, provide a preview of the program’s future, and take questions from viewers.

The All of Us Research Program Speaker Series will be streamed through YouTube Live. Closed captioning in English and Spanish will be available.

For more information, visit the  All of Us Training & Education Center website.

Categories: RML Blogs

Women’s History Month – Changing the Face of Medicine and Rise, Serve, Lead!

Mon, 2019-03-11 06:00

In observation of Women’s History Month, each week of March the Dragonfly will feature a National Library of Medicine exhibit that highlights the history of women in health, science, and society. This week highlights women physicians through two exhibits: the ” Changing the Face of MedicineandRise, Serve, Lead! America’s Women Physicians

Elizabeth Blackwell was 28 years old when she graduated from medical school in 1849 and became the first woman to receive an MD. However, she was not allowed to practice medicine by the medical community. She and other women have faced many obstacles on their path to practicing medicine.  The first Native American woman to receive a medical degree, Susan Le Flesche Picotte, was paid very little as a practicing physician on a reservation in comparison to a military doctor and would often have to pay out of her own pocket if the Bureau of Indian Affairs ran low on supplies. In 2017 more women than men entered medical school for the first time. However, many women physicians continue to face obstacles. One example is that women physicians who have families tend to shoulder more of the childcare and household duties compared to their male colleagues. Another factor is that more men are in leadership and administration roles as well as medical school faculty. Many female physicians face gender bias and discrimination from both their male colleagues and  from patients. But some studies reveal that female physicians have better communication with their patients and better patient outcomes. Despite the growth of women in medicine, more progress is needed to continue to close the gender gap.

Changing the Face of Medicine NLM exhibit

The National Library of Medicine continues to offer its now retired exhibit, Changing the Face of Medicine: Celebrating America’s Women Physicians which honors the lives and achievements of women in medicine. Women physicians have excelled in many diverse medical careers. Some have advanced the field of surgery by developing innovative procedures. Some have won the Nobel prize. Others have brought new attention to the health and well-being of children. Many have reemphasized the art of healing and the roles of culture and spirituality in medicine. The National Library of Medicine  honors the lives and accomplishments of these women in the hope of inspiring a new generation of medical pioneers through this online exhibition.

The online exhibit features a number of engaging activities including a searchable directory of physicians by ethnicity, location, specialty and medical school. Short biographies and images of the featured physicians is included. Lesson plans for K-12 and higher education are readily available along with teacher resources. Online activities about the human body are available to learn how the body works but also highlights how physicians have improved our lives. Use this NLM exhibit resources to promote STEM and encourage students to enter the health professions, especially to increase the career opportunities for women and other underrepresented groups and therefore providing greater access to healthcare and healthier communities.

NLM recently announced its newest exhibit, Rise, Serve, Lead! America’s Women Physicians which highlights the lives and achievements of over 300 women physicians who have made a difference through their medical practice and research, work as activists, service as administrators, and mentorship to the next generation of physicians. It presents a selection of the physician biographies featured in the 2003 NLM exhibition Changing the Face of Medicine: Celebrating America’s Women Physicians, showcasing the work of these doctors to connect to a contemporary audience.

 Rise, Serve, Lead

The online content of Rise, Serve, Lead! includes an education component featuring a new K-12 lesson plan and a digital gallery of works from NLM Digital Collections. These books and journal articles were authored by some of the doctors profiled in the exhibition and give a view into both their scientific research and experiences in a male-dominated field.

Both exhibits highlight the contributions of women physicians and their persistence and dedication in a career field which was not often welcoming but which has greatly benefited from their presence.

Categories: RML Blogs

UW HSL Brings Together Librarians, Faculty and Students to Learn about Interprofessional Education in the Health Sciences

Fri, 2019-03-08 06:00

The term “interprofessional education” (IPE) pops up a lot these days in the health sciences literature. What is it, and how can we best put it into practice?

image of flowers with workshop folder and paper pad and pen

The University of Washington Health Sciences Library (UW HSL) was awarded a Community Health Outreach grant from the National Network of Libraries of Medicine’s Pacific Northwest Region to put on a one-day conference on interprofessional education in the health sciences. It was timed to coincide with the American Library Association’s (ALA) Midwinter Meeting in Seattle to attract more librarians, but was also open to faculty, staff and students at UW. Over forty people attended, with librarians the majority group. The theme was Communicate Collaborate Engage: An Interprofessional Education Discussion in the Health Sciences, and focused on IPE faculty development and community engagement. The program consisted of three speakers and a panel of community members who have put IPE into practice. Two activities were integrated into the program including Impromptu Networking which was led by UW HSL’s Nikki Dettmar and a project charter activity, led by UW’s Institute of Translational Health Sciences’ (ITHS) Lean Specialist, Jennifer Sprecher.

Maria Wamsley, MD, from the University of California San Francisco (UCSF), spoke on From the Classroom to the Clinic: Meaningful IPE in Workplace Settings. She discussed how UCSF has set up teams in the hospital with a fixed nurse, social worker and pharmacist, in addition to attending physicians, residents, interns and students. There are regular meetings with the team where the benefits have been a greater appreciation of each member’s role and the importance of shared knowledge.

Jennifer Sprecher, ITHS, spoke on the skills which make an effective team, which in turn is what drives an IPE group’s success. Jennifer and Nicole Summerside also spoke on Collaboration and Continuous Learning across the IPE Continuum: Lessons Learned and a Look Ahead. Highlights included that miscommunication coupled with inadequate care coordination, particularly for chronic conditions, has led to unnecessary deaths and problems. IPE helps in the pursuit of the Triple Aim by improving the patient experience of care, improving the health of populations, and reducing the per capita cost of health care.

The community engagement panel included a clinician, a student and a community partner.

  • Bea Gandara, a UW dentistry professor who works on dental outreach projects;
  • Anna Humphreys, a joint MPH/MSW student who runs University District Street Medicine, a UW medical student outreach program; and,
  • Julia Coulson, who runs an annual health clinic which takes place in the local basketball stadium and treats 4,000 patients over 4 days, manned by volunteer doctors, dentists, optometrists, nurses, and others.

The panel was moderated by Tracy Brazg, Assistant Director of the UW’s Center for Health Sciences Interprofessional Education, Research and Practice (CHSIE), the coordinating body of IPE for the UW’s health sciences schools.

A diverse mix of attendees enjoyed lively discussions on what lessons each person could take back to their practice. The assessment/evaluation forms that were turned in were unanimously positive, with people saying they had come out of the program knowing more about IPE, wanting to bring it to their institutions, and also wanting to develop an ongoing community conversation.

The planning committee at UW HSL included Andrea Ball, Nikki Dettmar, and Lynly Beard with fiscal support from Mary Martha McNally and administrative oversight from Emily Patridge.

Categories: RML Blogs

PLA and NNLM Teaming up to Raise Awareness of the National Institute of Health’s All of Us Research Program

Thu, 2019-03-07 12:09

The National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM) and the Public Library Association (PLA) have joined together to raise awareness and support of the National Institutes of Health’s All of Us Research Program. The NNLM and PLA have worked together to increase health literacy through programming and consumer health information over the last couple of years. This new collaboration will support community engagement around All of Us by elevating the role of public libraries in locating reliable health information and creating connections through library spaces and technology. This partnership will provide health information training for public library staff, funding to support library health related programming and services, and connections to local medical libraries and community organizations.  Learn more about this partnership in the ALA News announcement.

NNLM’s collaboration with the NIH’s All of Us Research Program is called the NNLM All of Us Community Engagement Network. Learn more about this collaboration and how public libraries can participate.

Categories: RML Blogs

Women’s History Month – Pictures of Nursing: The Zwerdling Postcard Collection

Mon, 2019-03-04 01:00

In observation of Women’s History Month, each week of March the Dragonfly will feature a National Library of Medicine exhibit that highlights the history of women in health, science, and society. This week highlights the nursing profession through the “Pictures of Nursing: The Zwerdling Postcard Collection“.

The nursing profession is made up of about 3 million registered nurses in the United States and many more world wide and is one of the most diverse professions available. Nursing began within the home with women taking care of ill or incapacitated family members. Since then, nursing has expanded to include not only women but men as well. Nurses work in a variety of settings including but not limited to hospitals, clinics, K-12 schools, research labs, universities, long term care facilities, law firms and even in libraries. A nurse may work independently and collaboratively, and nurses are now many patient’s primary healthcare provider. Nurses have been instrumental in promoting the health of individuals and communities as well as in progress of clinical care, public health, and scientific advancements. We celebrate and honor the work of nurses of the past, the present and the future during Women’s History Month and all year long.

NLM exhibit, Pictures of Nursing

The National Library of Medicine (NLM) History of Medicine Division acquired an archive of 2,588 postcards from American nurse and collector Michael Zwerdling, RN. This unique archive consists of postcards with images of nurses and the nursing profession from around the world, produced between 1893 and 2011 with many examples coming from the “Golden Age” of postcards—roughly 1907 to 1920. These images of nurses and nursing are informed by cultural values; ideas about women, men, and work; and by attitudes toward class, race, and national differences. By documenting the relationship of nursing to significant forces in 20th-century life, such as war and disease, these postcards reveal how nursing was seen during those times. Pictures of Nursing provides a way to understand the types of images that are represented in the full collection.

The online exhibit includes a digital gallery of over 500 images from the postcard collection.  Viewers can browse through a selection that highlights nurses, the nursing profession, and nursing as informed by cultural values. In addition, educators will find a lesson plan for high school students to examine some of the postcards visually and to consider how images affect social perception of nursing. A higher education module encourages students to consider the complex relationship between idealized American gender roles, wartime propaganda, and female military nurses’ real experiences during World War I and World War II.

Pictures of Nursing is also a traveling exhibit which your library or organization may wish to host. Learn more about booking the exhibit on its Book An Exhibition web page.

Want to visit the exhibit? It will be at the Lewiston City Library in Lewiston, ID Januay 6 – February 15, 2020.

Categories: RML Blogs

Consumer Health Minute: Health Information Evaluation

Wed, 2019-02-20 13:21

Do your patrons look for health information on not so credible websites? Are they asking for the latest diet or weight loss books? Are they fans of celebrity doctors who have their own TV show or website? Do they follow celebrities who like to provide their fans with ‘professional’ health information? Do you cringe inside when they specifically request such items? It can be a teachable moment to provide some evaluation tips during the reference interaction. In addition, consider providing this information by the computers or as a handy bookmark.

The NNLM provides the ABCs of website evaluation:

  • Accuracy: Is the information based on sound medical research? Are sources sited reliable and authoritative?
  • Authority: What are the credentials of the author? What is the domain name? (.edu or .gov has more authority than .com and not all .org websites are credible as there is no regulation)
  • Bias/Objectivity: Is advertising clearly marked? Who is sponsoring the webpage? Do the graphics, fonts, and information play to the reader’s emotions?
  • Currency/Timeliness: When was the information last reviewed or updated? Do the links work?
  • Coverage: Is the information complete? Are sources given for additional information?

Do all websites or publications need to meet all these criteria to be reliable sources of information? No, but the more that are met the more your patrons can trust them.

The ABCs of website evaluation can be used without permission to create table tents, bookmarks, signs to keep your patrons aware of the quality of the health information they are accessing.

Trust It or Trash It:

This method of evaluating health information uses straightforward and plain language which your patrons might find easier to remember. Trust It or Trash It was developed by the Access to Credible Genetics Resource Network, a cooperative agreement funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). More detailed information is provided on the website but the basics are listed here.

  1. Who said it?: Who wrote it? Who paid for it?
  2. When did they say it?: When was it written or updated?
  3. How did they know?: How do you know if this information pertains to you? Does the information seem reasonable based on what you’ve read or know?

The information is also provided in Spanish. Unless noted, the content on the website is under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Categories: RML Blogs

PNR Rendezvous- All of Us Partnership

Wed, 2019-02-13 03:00

Many of you have been hearing about the work of our All of Us Community Engagement Coordinator, Michele Spatz.  Michele has been highlighting the NIH All of Us Research Program in our region. This program is hoping to gather data from 1 million or more participants to help improve health through precision medicine and to be reflective of our diversity.  This PNR Rendezvous session will describe the NNLM All of Us Research Program partnership and what it means for libraries. It will then highlight the Journey, the All of Us Mobile Education and Enrollment Center’s four-day visit to Hailey, Idaho, hosted by the Hailey Public Library. LeAnn Gelskey, Hailey Public Library director, will share her experience facilitating the Journey’s visit. Come learn what’s inside and how your library can “get on board” and benefit from the NNLM All of Us Research Program partnership.
The All of Us Journey continues to tour the country. Learn where they have been and future visits.

Session title: The NNLM All of Us Partnership & Inside the Journey

When: Wednesday February 20 at 1:00pm PT, Noon Alaska, 2:00pm MT

How to attend: Registration is encouraged but not required. Full information about joining the webinar is available on the PNR Rendezvous web page.

The session will be recorded but we encourage you to attend the live session where you can ask questions and dialogue with the presenters.

Categories: RML Blogs

Measles Outbreak in Washington State

Mon, 2019-02-04 06:00

Many of you are aware of the recent measles outbreak in Washington state and so it is of particular concern for the PNR region. The vast majority of these cases are in Clark county,  43 cases have been reported and 32 are children under the age of 10. Of those cases 37 had not been immunized.  According to a recent PLOS article, Seattle, Spokane and Portland are included in the top 15 cities that are considered “hotspots” who have a large number of  vaccine non-medical exemptions.  Washington, Idaho, and Oregon are states that allow a “philosophical belief” exemption when it comes to vaccines.  Whatever the public’s view of immunizations, measles is a very serious health condition and is especially so for those who cannot get vaccinated due to their health as well as pregnant women and babies under the age of 1.

Where to go to provide information to your communities?

The Washington State Department of Health provides information about:

  • the numbers and counties affected
  • an outbreak toolkit for parents and the public
  • template letters for schools to parents as well as their staff
  • information in multiple languages

The CDC provides information for parents about the measles vaccine and about measles.

MedlinePlus includes:

  • an overview about measles
  • information about risk, prevention and symptoms
  • information regarding specific populations
  • information in multiple languages

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has a special edition of their NIH News in Health explaining the important role vaccines have in keeping us healthy.

This information can be provided as links on your website, included in social media, and printed for your patrons and consumers to take with them. Bringing awareness with reliable health information can help reduce the spread of this outbreak and is an important step in keeping your communities safe and healthy.

Categories: RML Blogs

A Fond Farewell!

Fri, 2019-02-01 04:00

Dear Reader,

It is with a sense of bittersweet longing for things to stay as they are that I must inform you that things most decidedly are not staying as they are, at least in my personal occupational journey!  Today is my last at the marvellous offices of the network of libraries dealing with medical matters, fortunately not all of them delicate.  I shall be transferring my vocational affections to Berkeley, in faraway California, henceforth, and hope to encounter many of you in that delightful place.  I expect my work there to be intellectually rigorous, enjoyably and somewhat frighteningly so, and I am wondrously prepared by all of the activities in which I have been involved these two years since.  I hope that I may maintain an active and lively correspondence with any of you wishing that felicity, and that you will not hesitate to write to me should I be able to render you any kindness or assistance.

Ever Yours, Your Most Affectionate Companion in Librarianship,

Ann (channeling a certain early 18th century author whose last name rhymes with Boston)

Categories: RML Blogs

Coming Soon to Your Inbox: A New Way to Stay Connected

Wed, 2019-01-30 20:00

The NNLM Community Engagement Network (NNLM CEN) offers relevant health news as well as information on NNLM funding opportunities, free consumer health online training classes, health programming ideas and downloadable resources to help your library support its patrons’ health information needs. To keep you abreast of all the latest, we’re launching the monthly CEN Newsletter on February 11th, which will deliver all of the recent and important happenings directly to your email inbox. All you need to do is sign up!  We do hope you’ll join us!

Categories: RML Blogs