Last month’s Consumer Health Minute focused on health reference. Providing any type of health information services can feel a little intimidating but that doesn’t have to be the case. Learning more about various health resources and services can help prepare you and your staff to feel more knowledgeable and confident. The National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM) works with the Medical Library Association to provide continuing education toward obtaining CHIS.
What is CHIS?
CHIS is an acronym for Consumer Health Information Specialization, a program by the Medical Library Association (MLA). The CHIS program offers training in providing health information services to consumers, and recognition for the accomplishment of acquiring new health information skills. NNLM provides free, online training in support of CHIS, and can sponsor your CHIS application or renewal fee, making this specialization completely free to you. Once you’ve completed 12 credits of training per guidelines below, simply fill out this form to get your CHIS application fee sponsored by NNLM. Any library staff member or library student in the U.S. interested in providing health information to the public is eligible for sponsorship.
Why Get CHIS?
Librarians know the lifesaving and life-enhancing value of accurate evidence-based health information. By earning CHIS, you acquire skills and knowledge needed to become a confident, expert provider of health information to your community. Your CHIS shows employers, colleagues, and the public you serve that you are committed to offering quality consumer health information services and to staying current with developments in consumer health information resources, technologies, and services.
CHIS Accelerated Learning Plan
Right now NNLM is offering an accelerated learning plan to quickly earn CHIS in about a month through free, online, self-paced classes. For more information download the Plan.
Citizen science is collaborative research done by everyday people, anytime, anywhere, to help answer questions scientists can’t answer alone. In order to turn curiosity into impact, Citizen Science Month is recognized annually in April to promote all things citizen science. Libraries can serve as a hub for citizen science in their communities by mobilizing patrons to get involved in collecting data and spreading the word about their efforts, and participants can develop a deeper engagement in scientific and health literacy through their active involvement in the scientific process. There are many citizen science projects that can be done in a backyard or from home. Our friends at SciStarter have easy citizen science ideas to share and even some health-related projects selected in collaboration with NLM.
To learn more, visit NNLM Reading Club Book Selections and Health Resources: Citizen Science. Choose one of the three featured books. Then either host a virtual book club discussion or, when your library reopens, download the discussion guide, promotional materials, and corresponding health information. Short on time? No worries! Apply for a a free NNLM Reading Club Book Kit.
Welcome to Citizen Science Month at the PNR. Thanks to the support of the National Library of Medicine (NLM), SciStarter – a web-based research affiliate of the School for the Future of Innovation in Society at the Arizona State University – is helping all kinds of libraries curate activities for Citizen Science Month. In fact, the activities that PNR is doing for Citizen Science Month 2020 are inspired by SciStarter’s collaboration with the NLM. Citizen Science Month promotes all things citizen science which range from amazing discoveries to inspiring projects that are all citizen science-related!
What is citizen science? Citizen science connects research scientists and everyday people to help accelerate research and discovery. Yes, this means that anybody can become a citizen scientist and make an impact on society by contributing to groundbreaking research! Next question, “Where can I get started?” To help, throughout the month of April, NNLM PNR’s Citizen Science Team is curating a Dragonfly blog series on different types of environmental health or health-focused citizen science projects that you can do with your library patrons virtually throughout the year and especially during Citizen Science Month.
Each week, we will highlight a new citizen science project that you and your library patrons can do from the comforts of home; these citizen science projects come from the SciStarter/NLM microsite which feature half a dozen health-related citizen science projects. PNR’s Citizen Science Month will wrap with an exciting PNR Rendezvous webinar, “What’s all this talk about citizen science?” featuring SciStarter founder Darlene Cavalier, and two high school teachers from Oregon, who will share their experience working with their students and families on citizen science projects.
Here’s PNR’s Citizen Science Month schedule for April 2020:
Week 1 (April 1-3) – Welcome to Citizen Science Month 2020 Dragonfly Blog (Nancy Shin)
Week 2 (April 6-10)– “Stallcatchers” Citizen Science Project Dragonfly Blog (Michele Spatz)
Week 3 (April 13-17) – “Flu Near You” Citizen Science Project Dragonfly Blog (Nancy Shin)
Week 4 (April 20-24)– “What’s in Your Backyard?” Citizen Science Project Dragonfly Blog
Week 5 (April 27- 30) – “Crowd the Tap” Citizen Science Project Dragonfly Blog (Nancy Shin)
“What all this talk about citizen science?” PNR Rendezvous webinar (April 29th, 2020)
We here at the PNR hope you enjoy our blog series throughout the month of April and our webinar entitled “What all this talk about citizen science?” on April 29th, 2020. Happy 2020 Citizen Science Month!!!
COVID-19 Pandemic Response Virtual Hackathon, March 27-29
Event Description: The Pandemic Response Hackathon is a virtual hackathon aimed at better understanding and mitigating the spread of COVID-19 and future pandemics. The goal is to bring public health professionals alongside the technology community’s talent to contribute to the world’s response to the pandemic. Hackathon projects will be formulated and judged by an interdisciplinary panel of public health, health IT, and policy experts.
Datavant is hosting a Pandemic Response Virtual Hackathon from March 27-29 (Fri-Sun) to spur health innovation solutions in response to COVID-19 challenges facing frontline health workers, public health, and our communities. Clinicians, public heath, designers, software developers, health IT experts, patient advocacy groups, and community are welcome. Join us as we come together as a community to contribute to the world’s response to COVID19 and future pandemics.
Are you planning an in-person Citizen Science Month event in April? Looking to host a virtual event, or transition your previously in-person event to a virtual format? Then this is the virtual training for you! Join us on March 25th at 11:00 am Pacific, Noon MT, 1:00pm CT and 2pm ET. Register here for the free webinar.
The Science Friday and SciStarter teams will share tips to facilitate citizen science virtual events for schools and general audiences in April.
In addition to being a trusted public media source for science news, Science Friday has been livestreaming live interactive science demonstrations, fully online educator learning communities and workshops, place-based science events for general audiences, and more since 2015. Their livestream audiences reach in the millions across platforms such as Periscope, Facebook Live, and Zoom and have served kids, parents, educators, and lifelong learners around the country and world.
Speakers & Facilitators for this webinar: Ariel Zych, Education Director, Science Friday; Xochitl Garcia, K-12 education program manager, Science Friday; and Caroline Nickerson, Program Manager; SciStarter
Unless you are a consumer health librarian you may not be as familiar with addressing health reference questions. It’s OK if you don’t feel comfortable and a little uncertain how to answer questions regarding medication, a health condition, or a specific diet. You don’t have to know the answers. Like many of the topics your patrons ask of you, you probably aren’t an expert and neither are you a health professional (most likely). But what you can provide is information from authoritative resources. Unsure what those are? NNLM (National Network of Libraries of Medicine) offers consumer health classes to help you increase your knowledge about health information and increase your confidence in providing your patrons with quality health information so they can be better informed about their own health as well as their families. NNLM has developed a new class specifically about health reference.
Introduction to Health Reference: Ethics and Best Practices
Health reference has some unique factors to consider. Take this on-demand class to learn how to conduct a health reference interview confidently and ethically. It is currently available and is self-paced and interactive. By the end you will learn:
- What is a health reference interview
- How the library can protect patrons’ health privacy and confidentiality using ethical guidelines from library associations
- Effective communication strategies to identify the health information needs of patrons
- Simple methods for evaluating online health information that can be easily explained to patrons
Register to take the class and you’ll be well on your way to conducting health reference with greater confidence.
This past March 2020 RDAP was hosted in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Unfortunately, I was not able to attend in person, but I was able to catch the conference virtually. The keynote speaker was incredibly informative and knowledgeable and of course, very articulate and engaging. For me, the highlight of the Summit was the keynote speaker. The conference keynote was Michele Suina, PhD (Cochiti Pueblo), Program Director, Albuquerque Area Southwest Tribal Epidemiology Center (AASTEC).
Michele talked about her work with the Global Indigenous Data Alliance (GIDA) which is a great organization that prides themselves on “promoting indigenous control of indigenous data” around the world. Their data motto is “Be FAIR and CARE” which is a play on the popular data acronym FAIR (i.e. fair, accessible, interoperable, and reusable) and GIDA’s acronym for data CARE.
CARE is an acronym that reminds us that right because data is shared and open doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s tension-free for all people especially vulnerable populations like indigenous ones. Let’s take a closer look at what CARE means. The “C” in CARE stands for “Collective benefit” which means that data should be used in ways that empower Indigenous People so that they can derive maximum benefit from the data’s use. The “A” in CARE stands for “Authority to control” which means we must recognize the rights and interests of Indigenous Peoples and their rights and interests over their data; in other words, we must respect their authority to control their own data. The “R” in CARE stands for “Responsibility” which means that we are responsible and accountable for how the data is being used to foster positive relationships with the Indigenous Peoples and that they derive the maximum benefit from their data. The “E” in CARE stand for “Ethics” which means that the wellbeing of the Indigenous Peoples should always be at the heart of the data life cycle and across data ecosystems.
As data enthusiasts we must remember that to be “FAIR”, we must also “CARE” especially with vulnerable populations like indigenous ones.
NNLM’s partner, SciStarter, has asked us to share this brief survey with you!
With support from the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS), Arizona State University and SciStarter have spent the past 2+ years developing and field testing resources for libraries,to introduce citizen science and field-testing kits to their communities. Within the STEM realm, citizen science enables people from all walks of life to actively contribute to real scientific research.
Our pilot project has expanded throughout the state of AZ, thanks to mini grants offered by Arizona State Library, Archives, and Public Records and the National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM) and we are eager to get a sense of the levels of interest and commitment from more libraries across the country!
We appreciate your interest and commitment to supporting public engagement in science and hope that we can work together in the near future!
The ASU-SciStarter team
NNLM is partnering with the Public Library Association (PLA) to offer the free webinar “Creating a Diverse Archive: Lessons in Community Engagement from StoryCorps.”
When: Wednesday, March 25 11:00 AM-12:00 PM (Pacific) 12:00 PM-1:00 PM (Mountain) 1:00 PM-2:00 PM (Central) 2:00 PM-3:00 PM (Eastern)
Join StoryCorps, the national oral history project, for an in-depth look at how to engage your community and local stakeholders through storytelling. Each year, StoryCorps collaborates with hundreds of community partners in order to record and preserve diverse voices from across the U.S. In this webinar, we’ll share insights from our partnership model, discuss StoryCorps’ efforts to create a representative archive, and provide best practices and case studies for engaging your library community through storytelling. Sponsored by the National Network of Libraries of Medicine/All of Us Community Engagement Network.
For more information and to register, please visit: http://www.ala.org/pla/education/onlinelearning/webinars/storycorps
I have some very exciting news to share with you all. The PNR Citizen Science Team has planned a great PNR Rendezvous webinar entitled “What’s All this Talk About Citizen Science?” on Wednesday, April 29th, 2020 at 1 P.M. PT | 2 P.M. MT | 4 P.M. ET | 10 A.M. Hawaii | 12 P.M. Alaska with three AMAZING guest speakers.
The first guest speaker will be SciStarter founder Darlene Cavalier who will give us a basic introduction to the world of Citizen Science and suggest new ways that we can get involved with virtual Citizen Science projects especially in the time of COVID-19. Joining Darlene are two high school science teachers, Cheryl Rice and Pete Recksiek, of Dalles, Oregon, who will share their classroom Citizen Science experience using two different projects they selected from the SciStarter/NLM microsite. Cheryl will discuss facilitating Debris Tracker and Pete will discuss facilitating Stallcatchers with their high school science students. Each will share why they choose their project, what went well, and what they’d do differently next time. They will also describe the benefits of Citizen Science project participation and offer advice for others, especially library staff, who want to offer citizen science opportunities through programs such as STEM, library nature groups, and science book clubs. The good news is: anyone can be a citizen scientist – all that’s needed is a bit of curiosity!
Please stay tuned to the Dragonfly Blog for more Citizen Science things during the month of April 2020!
Wikipedia’s health topics pages are visited nearly 7 billion times a year. Citing National Library of Medicine (NLM) resources in Wikipedia articles improves the credibility of the content. #CiteNLM is a campaign to improve the quality of Wikipedia’s health-related articles. #CiteNLM Wikipeadia Edit-a-thons are held twice annually. The Spring #citeNLM Wikipedia Edit-a-thon, focusing on preventative health and wellness, will be held virtually on April 30, 2020. Libraries are encouraged to participate in the virtual edit-a-thon, or host their own events throughout the month of April.
To get ready for the upcoming #citeNLM Wikipedia Edit-a-thon, attend the training on Thursday, April 2 , 2020 (10-11am Alaska, 11-noon Pacific, noon-1pm Mountain).
When planning an Edit-a-thon event in your library, or to participate virtually on April 30th, sign up for the campaign on the #citeNLM Dashboard. The dashboard tracks involvement in the edit-a-thon.
Whether you’ve participated in #citeNLM Wikipedia Edit-a-thons in the past, or this is your first time, check out the Wikipedia Edit-a-thon guide for a comprehensive list of resources and information about participating in the #citeNLM event.
Citizen Science Month (and Beyond)! @ Your Library – A free webinar this Friday, March 6, 2020 from 11:00 am – Noon PT.
Citizen science can build upon your existing STEM programs or introduce a whole new world of STEM engagement opportunities for library patrons. From tracking species migrations to measuring light pollution or searching online for new galaxies, citizen science invites patrons to engage in REAL research projects and contribute to scientific knowledge. Discover how libraries are serving as community hubs for citizen science with support from the National Library of Medicine, SciStarter and Arizona State University’s School for the Future of Innovation in Society. We invite you to join this free, interactive webinar “Citizen Science Month and Beyond!” and discover how you can access the many FREE resources to help introduce, facilitate, or promote citizen science in your library…yes, even THIS April!
Learn more about citizen science at CitizenScienceMonth.org.
Register in advance for this webinar: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_suwQ2J1RQjCqkzJcVhiHYA
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.
The following information was sent by the NLM Disaster Information Management Research Center (DIMRC).
Please continue to refer to the National Library of Medicine for updates on the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).
For Continuity of Operations planning, businesses and libraries may want to review these resources:
- On February 12, 2020, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers to Plan and Respond to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).
- If you complete the freely available NLM online course In Case of Emergencies: Continuity of Operations (COOP) Planning you will end up with a fully developed one-page plan.
In addition, the Federal Depository Library Program has scheduled a free webinar, “Pandemic! NLM Resources for Librarians to Assist Researchers and the Public in Understanding the Coronavirus and Influenza”, on March 25 at 11:00 a.m. PT. The session will be recorded.
NNLM PNR will continue to post information and resources about the coronavirus in the Dragonfly blog as information becomes available.
Good nutrition, combined with physical activity, can help you to reach and maintain a healthy weight, reduce your risk of chronic diseases, and promote your overall health. Unfortunately, social factors such as poverty or inadequate food options may lead to obesity, malnourishment, and poor health. National Nutrition Month®, recognized each year during the month of March, focuses on the importance of making informed food choices, developing sound eating habits, and raising awareness of food insecurity.
To spark the conversation, visit NNLM Reading Club Book Selections and Health Resources: Nutrition. Choose one of the three featured books. Then download the discussion guide, promotional materials and corresponding health information. Short on time? No worries! Apply for a free NNLM Reading Club Book kit.
The recent coronavirus outbreak has dominated the news and may be a topic of concern in your communities. People in your community may be coming to your library for reliable health information. Here are some resources to consider posting on your website, social media, and handouts.
- Coronavirus Infections health topic page with information about prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and how it spreads.
- Coronavirus testing
The World Health Organization includes consumer resources for guidance on how to prevent the spread, what to do if sick, coping with the stress during the outbreak as well as addressing mis-information about the infection with fact sheets and infographics for you to download and use.
The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) is a primary source of information. Though not as consumer focused as the websites listed above, it is great resource to learn more about the spread of the virus, recommendations, and what is being done to prevent further spread as well as what is being done to treat those infected.
For those who may be experiencing stress during this or any disease outbreak, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has a publication, “Coping with Stress During Infectious Disease Outbreaks” which can be downloaded and printed for free. Having this fact sheet on hand or any of the resources mentioned in this post, will provide authoritative and trusted health information for those you serve.
Announcing the NNLM Human Genetics Film Kit! Through our partnership with the NIH All of Us Research program, we are providing free film kits to up to 250 public libraries across the United States. Because we know how difficult programming and resources for providing health information can be in small and rural libraries with limited budget and personnel, Association for Rural and Small Libraries (ARSL) members receive first consideration.
The Human Genetics Film Kit comes with four films, discussion guides, and customizable marketing materials. Applications are open until March 16. Selected public libraries can expect to receive their kits by April 30, 2020.
Learn more about the NNLM Human Genetics Film Kit at https://nnlm.gov/all-of-us/funding/human-genetics-film-kits
Apply to receive a film kit at https://nnlm.gov/ZNv
Do you run programs at your library? Interested in receiving a free Citizen Science Program Kit? Read on!
The National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM), a program of the National Library of Medicine (NLM), has expanded its partnership with SciStarter to support Citizen Science Month (April 2020). In 2019, the two organizations worked collaboratively to promote Citizen Science Day in libraries, to increase awareness of citizen science in communities across the nation, and help individuals explore the impact of their environment on health. Through citizen science and crowdsourcing, NNLM can engage communities in addressing societal needs and accelerating biomedical science, technology, and innovation. Community participation in the research process also builds trust between NNLM and the communities that we serve. The featured projects address environmental and health issues through citizen science. SciStarter and the NLM put together a curated and publicly accessible page of activities to support Citizen Science month and other Citizen Science activities in your region.
During the month of April, NNLM and SciStarter seek to host citizen science activities in select cities. Weekly webinars for the library community will be available leading up to the month of April for programming support and Citizen Science questions. Here’s how your library can host an event:
- Sign up with this form. If your city is not listed, please fill in your location on the “other” line. There may be expanded opportunity for events and programming support in your area!
- Receive a program kit with instructions on facilitating an event
- Set a date
- Have fun with Citizen Science!
If you have any questions about Citizen Science Month this coming April 2020 or about citizen science in general, please do not hesitate to reach out to us at the NNLM PNR office at email@example.com.
The new coronavirus (i.e. COVID-19) has some people in the United States worried. As of February 18th, 2020, there are more than 70,000 confirmed cases in China right now. The outbreak is serious, but if you’re living in the United States, the odds are that the regular flu is a much more serious risk to your health than the coronavirus. The CDC reported that in the 2017-2018 year, that there were over 60,000 influenza/flu associated deaths in the United States alone. On February 18th, 2020 coronavirus fatalities peaked at 1,875 in Asia alone with one death outside of Asia so far.
Again, according to the CDC, the risk of coronavirus infection to the general public of the United States is considered “low at this time” as the general American public is unlikely exposed to this virus. This risk of infection changes of course if let’s say you are an American healthcare worker caring for patients with COVID-19 or if you have recently traveled to China. According to Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, care like washing your hands frequently as you can and staying away from crowded places where people are coughing and sneezing are more effective than wearing face masks. According to Dr. Fauci the only people who need masks are those who are already infected to keep them from exposing others.
A great data visualization/data dashboard on the coronavirus is one that was put out by Baltimore’s very own John Hopkins University. Unlike some media outlets and social media, this data visualization tells a technically accurate data story of what’s going on with the coronavirus outbreak worldwide. It takes a balanced and factual approach at looking at not only looking at the number of deaths (i.e. 1,875 as of 02/18/20), but the remarkable number of people who have recovered (i.e. 13,147 as of 02/18/20) from this viral infection. The map on the dashboard accurately locates and quantifies the number of confirmed coronavirus cases with China having the most at 72,439 as of February 18th, 2020. Finally, like all good data stories, the John Hopkins data visualization/story cites credible data sources like WHO, CDC, ECDC, NHC, and DXY in an attempt to be transparent and trustworthy. All in all, this data visualization/story of the coronavirus makes a good attempt at a truthful depiction of the outbreak that is devoid of exaggeration and of most negative personal biases.
John Hopkins University (2020). Coronavirus COVID-19 Global Cases by John Hopkins CSSE. https://gisanddata.maps.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html#/bda7594740fd40299423467b48e9ecf6
“The Field Guide to Citizen Science: How You can Contribute to Scientific Research and Make a Difference”, written by SciStarter experts Darlene Cavalier, Catherine Hoffman, and Caren Cooper is a fantastic read. They do an excellent job of explaining that what defines citizen science, its history, and how you can easily become a citizen scientist with an array of citizen science projects that they highlight and recommend in their book.
I learned many interesting things about citizen science from this read. For example, the term “citizen” at least in the United States, is associated with a contentious immigration debate about who is eligible to participate in civic life, including science and education. As a result of this, other terms have been used to describe citizen science like community science, public participation in scientific research, participatory action research, and community based participatory research. Despite its associated tensions with the term “citizen” in citizen science, none of the other terms is as complete or widely used as the term “citizen science”.
One thing that I was always skeptical about with citizen science was how scientists and researchers could trust citizen science data. I learned though that with data collection and analysis from citizen scientists, that there exists a rigorous process for cleaning and collecting accurate data. For example, generally if a data point stands out from the norm, it will undergo expert review. Also, to substantiate and validate data, citizen scientists as part of their data collection, submit photos of their specimen. Among other things, extensive training and testing is done related to quality assurance and quality control for citizen science projects. Lastly, I learned that almost one-quarter of citizen science projects compare data from many volunteers and validate data by independent consensus and sometimes projects request the same data in several different ways in order to double-check for errors. It is these quality protocols that are ingrained into the citizen science project regiment that ensures citizen science data is trustworthy and valid.
For most of the book, the authors recommend various citizen science projects that are free or very affordable to do on your own or with your community. Most of the citizen science projects can be found in SciStarter’s extensive database of citizen science projects. As a result of Citizen Science month coming up this April 2020, the NNLM PNR group is planning a PNR-Rendezvous webinar on April 29th, 2020 at 1 PM PT, with guest speaker and SciStarter founder Darlene Cavalier. Please stay tuned for more details!!!
The following update regarding Coronavirus information is from the National Library of Medicine’s Disaster Information Research Center (DIMRC)
Information available from the National Library of Medicine on the Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) is highlighted on the NLM homepage. This section continues to be updated as new information becomes available. Most recent updates include:
- Clinical studies related to the novel coronavirus (ClinicalTrials.gov)
- revised PubMed search that retrieves older articles not tagged with the new MeSH Supplementary Concept Record
- updated Disaster Lit search that includes the temporary official WHO name “2019-nCOV”