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Archive for the ‘NLM Resources’ Category

MLA Webinar “Demystifying R” sponsored sites

Thursday, September 29th, 2016

MLA Webinar: “Demystifying R: An Introduction for Librarians”
Presented by Lisa Federer, AHIP
Wednesday, October , 1-2:30 pm (central)
This class has been approved for 1 hour of continuing education credit by the Medical Library Association.

The National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NN/LM), Greater Midwest Regional (GMR) sponsors up to (2) sites per state to host the MLA Webinars. If interested in viewing this upcoming webinar, please contact one of the following institutions:

  • Cleveland Clinic/South Pointe Hospital — Warrensville Hts., OH
  • University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign — Urbana, IL
  • University of Iowa — Iowa City, IA
  • Medical College of Wisconsin — Milwaukee, WI
  • University of Michigan — Ann Arbor, MI
  • University of North Dakota Medical School — Grand Forks, ND
  • University of North Dakota Bismarck — Bismarck, ND

If interested in becoming a GMR sponsored institutional host site for future MLA webinars, please visit our web page. Don’t hesitate to contact the GMR Office (, (319_ 353 – 4479) if you have any questions about the webinar or sponsored sites.

MLA Webinar Site Sponsorship

Monday, September 12th, 2016

The GMR is now accepting applications for site sponsorship for the MLA Webinar “Demystifying R” on October 5th.

To apply to serve as a registered site for this webinar, please fill out the application available on our website – we’ll be able to confirm your registration very soon after receiving this application. Please return your application via email ( by September 21st.


Demystifying R: An Introduction for Librarians
Date: Wednesday, October 5th, 1-2:30pm CST

Attendees will learn:

  • what the R programming language is and some of its key features
  • some key terminology and a basic understanding of how R works
  • some uses for that R may be a good solution for your data needs, including data processing and management, visualization, and statistical analysis
  • how R can be useful for working with research data, as well as with library data, including bibliometric data, library statistics, or budget data
  • where to find free resources for learning R

More information about the webinar and presenter is available here.

Please don’t hesitate to contact the GMR Office (, (319) 353 – 4479) if you have any questions about the application or site sponsorship.

Even iPhone gamers can learn from NLM Resources

Monday, August 22nd, 2016

I spent far too many hours in my high school Chemistry class playing Bejeweled on my laptop (sorry Ms. Schultz!), so when I started reading up on NLM’s resources for K-12 students, I was immediately interested when I saw that iPhone and online games are included on this list.

Up until now, the closest thing I’ve played to a health sciences iPhone game is Amateur Surgeon 3, which lets you make surgical incisions with a pizza cutter, so I think it’s safe to say it has absolutely zero educational value. Thankfully, the NLM’s selection of iOS games covers a lot more bases when it comes to educational content.

There’s Bohr Thru, which is a Bejeweled-style matching game for junior and high school students with objectives to collect the correct subatomic particles to create the first 18 elements on the periodic table. Players are even challenged to build Bohr models during bonus rounds – something that was extremely challenging for me due to my previous life as a Chemistry class slacker. After completing a level, the loading page includes more information about the atoms and elements to read while you wait.


Now that’s more like it. This game successfully reminded me what subatomic particles are. (from

For younger kids, there’s an online game called ToxMystery, where you accompany a cute cat named Toxie around a house to look for dangerous and hazardous chemicals. You’re even expected to identify the chemicals that can be found around the house – for instance, that Mercury can leak from a broken thermostat. The game teaches the students how to identify household toxins and gives them easy-to-understand information about why exactly they’re dangerous. It’s definitely an effective game for curious kiddos and cat lovers alike.


As a child I would have been super invested in the game just based on Toxie alone. (from

To learn more about what NLM can offer for K-12 students – from a much more reliable source than someone who just spent a good chunk of work time playing mobile games – plan to tune in to the joint GMR and SCR webinar about NLM K-12 resources.

Connection Information
Webinar Title: Education Connection: Connecting Health and Science in the Classroom
Date: Thursday, August 25, 2:00pm CST
To Join the Meeting:

  1. Go to:
  2. At the login screen, choose “Enter as a Guest” and type in your name
  3. Call-in information will be available in the room.
  4. Please use *6 to mute or un-mute your phone.

For a complete topic summary, presenter bio, and information about CE credit, check out this blog post from last week.

Molly Olmstead ( promises she won’t play so many iPhone games tomorrow.

Upcoming Webinar: NLM Resources for K-12 Students

Thursday, August 18th, 2016

Please join the NN/LM Greater Midwest Region and South Central Region for a collaborative webinar on Thursday, August 25th at 2:00pm CST. The webinar will cover NLM Resources for K-12 students.
Webinar Title: Education Connection: Connecting Health and Science in the Classroom
When?: Thursday, August 25, 2:00pm CST

To Join the Meeting:

  1. Go to:
  2. At the login screen, choose “Enter as a Guest” and type in your name
  3. Call-in information will be available in the room.
  4. Please use *6 to mute or un-mute your phone.

Topic Summary
This one-hour webinar will provide participates with an overview of our most popular NLM K-12 resources. We offer many different platforms to engage students on topics such as genetics, environmental health, and chemistry. Most of our resources cater to middle and high school students, and consist of iOS games, animations, lesson plans, and websites.   We will provide you with a “behind the scenes” look at our processes for the development of these resources, including our partnerships with teachers, students, and subject matter experts to assure we develop meaningful products.

About the Presenter
Karen Matzkin, a contractor with ICF International, is a K-12 Outreach Specialist in the Division of Specialized Information Services (SIS), National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health. Ms. Matzkin is responsible for the product development and outreach efforts of the K-12 team, which involves development of science education materials, websites and outreach. She holds a degree in Elementary Education from the University of Maryland.

Continuing Education (CE) Credit
One hour of MLA CE credit is available for attendees, but no advance registration is required. Further information will be provided during the webinar.

Please don’t hesitate to contact the GMR Office with questions or concerns regarding this webinar. You can email us at or call us at (319) 535-4479. We hope to see you on the 25th!

— Molly Olmstead

NN/LM and Health Professional Shortage Areas

Tuesday, August 9th, 2016

I’d guess that many of our members are familiar with the term “underserved areas” in relation to a health professional shortage area (HPSA, the federal government loves acronyms). This term is used to describe a geographic area or population group that meets the criteria for having a shortage of primary medical care, dental or mental health providers.

But, it’s not just for communities out in the middle of nowhere! You may be surprised by how many HPSAs are in urban areas.

Why do these areas matter to the GMR office? I’m sure most of you have the mission of the NN/LM memorized – but for those who don’t, remember that the mission of the program is to provide all U.S. health professionals with equal access to biomedical information and improve the public’s access to information. Like many federal programs, there is an emphasis on services to underserved and underrepresented populations.

Also, a particular aim (Aim 7, for those of you who are counting) of our office is to:

“…implement outreach and education programs that reach health professionals in the Region with a focus on underserved health communities and health professionals that work in these medically challenging communities so that easy access to NLM resources can be obtained.”

We’ll be counting on creating partnerships with your communities to make this happen! The Health Resources and Services Administration (another acronym, HRSA) provides a great tool for identifying HPSAs in your local area. Give it a try and use this as a tool for generating some ideas for outreach in your communities:

-Liz Kiscaden
Associate Director, NN/LM Greater Midwest Region



Getting a Head Start on Emergency Preparedness

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

DIMRCHappy New Year! Well, not exactly, but just like New Year’s, we have the opportunity to make resolutions. This one is easy to keep! Here’s an opportunity to get a head start on emergency preparedness for you library and your community. Next month is National Preparedness Month, and we have a full 31 days to plan and prepare for  sharing emergency preparedness and response resources with our patrons. Thanks to the National Library of Medicine (NLM), this is an easy resolution to keep. The NLM Disaster Information Management Research Center (DIMRC) is a great resource for disaster health information.

Have you thought of extending your information reach into your community? On Thursday, August 11, 2016, at 1:30 ET, DIMRC will present a Disaster Information Specialist Webinar, Collaborations between Libraries and Disaster Organizations. To tune in to this webinar, see the instructions on how to login: This is one of the monthly webinars, held generally on the second Thursday of the month, and hosted by DIMRC. The Medical Library Association (MLA) offers one hour continuing education credit for attending/viewing these webinars. See the DIMRC page for instructions on how to obtain CE.

Perhaps you need to take a closer look the characteristics of your community before coming up with a collaborative disaster plan. On Wednesday, August 17, 2016, NLM’s Specialized Information Services (SIS) will be presenting: Mapping Your Community’s Health, an online session hosted by our sister region, PSR. “Speakers will talk about the Community Health Maps blog for Information on low cost mapping tools for community-based organizations. Also covered will be a case study on mapping curb ramp accessibility for an assisted living facility as an example of community maps.” This webinar will he held 2-3 PM CT. To register:

Where’s the best place to find FREE quality disaster information resources? In addition to PubMed® and MedlinePlus® (see:, NLM supplements these two great databases with Disaster Lit® the Resource Guide for Disaster Medicine and Public Health. “Documents include expert guidelines, research reports, conference proceedings, training classes, fact sheets, websites, databases, and similar materials selected from over 700 organizations for a professional audience.”

The GMR provides emergency preparedness resources on our website at the following URL: If you are interested in the MLA Disaster Information Specialization, visit For more NN/LM training opportunities, see:

Jacqueline Leskovec

Jacqueline Leskovec, MLIS, MA, RN
Network Librarian
National Network of Libraries of Medicine
Greater Midwest Region
Hardin Library for the Health Sciences
University of Iowa
Skype: jacqueline.leskovec

Zika Virus in MeSH and on Resource Guides

Thursday, January 28th, 2016

It is predicted that the Zika virus will spread deep into the United States.  National Institutes of Heath (NIH) director included a powerful map by Kramer, et al (2015) on the NIH Director’s Blog at:

This virus has been known for a long time, but its apparent dangerous effects have only very recently come to light.  The National Library of Medicine (NLM) has taken two immediate steps to help address this threat. First, in a rare move, PubMed has immediately added two new terms to MeSH:

Because these terms are so new, search PubMed using zika[tw] to catch citations with the new MeSH headings, older articles on this topic, and to exclude citations by authors named Zika.

Second, an incident Web page was by the created by the NLM Disaster Information Management Research Center to gather resources on the emerging health issues arising from the Zika Virus:

This resource list links to a variety of sources such as:

  • Local, state, federal and international agencies and organizations
  • Database searches for the health information issues around the incidents
  • Focused resources for pregnant women and for health care providers
  • Social media resources for situational awareness


New FDA Database: AccessGUDID

Thursday, January 28th, 2016

What’s new? The FDA Global Unique Device Identification Database

Medical devices cover a wide range of products, from implants, CT scanners and surgical instruments to contact lenses, wheelchairs and blood glucose tests. Currently, very few medical devices  have a unique identifier that clearly distinguishes one product from another. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Center for Devices and Radiological Health (CDRH), has developed a Unique Device Identifiers (UDI) system, standardizing the identification of medical devices from distribution to patient use.

The Global Unique Device Identification Database (GUDID – pronounced “Good ID”) contains information submitted to the FDA on medical devices that have Unique Device Identifiers (UDI). Use AccessGUDID ( to search for specific medical devices. You can also download some or all of the GUDID data. (more…)

Updated MedlinePlus Connect Documentation

Monday, November 16th, 2015

MedlinePlus Connect recently updated the documentation for its users. Revised pages are the overview, technical information and the users page. New pages include How MedlinePlus Connect Works and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs). With these pages, commonly asked questions are answered, and a few new graphics are added.

If you experience problems with ICD-10-CM queries to MedlinePlus Connect, please check that your query is correct and includes this string: mainSearchCriteria.v.cs=2.16.840.1.113883.6.90

PubMed for Librarians coming soon online to a website near you!

Thursday, August 13th, 2015

The National Library of Medicine Training Center will be offering PubMed® for Librarians (PML) in December 2015. Just think…it will be cold then! PML is a series of five, independent, online classes. The classes are free. Each class meets online for 90 minutes and is worth 1.5 MLA CE credits.

Follow the links below to read the descriptions and register for the sessions that interest you.

PubMed for Librarians: Introduction to PubMed – December 7, 2015

PubMed for Librarians: MeSH – December 8, 2015

PubMed for Librarians: Automatic Term Mapping (ATM) – December 9, 2015

PubMed for Librarians: Building and Refining Your Search – December 10, 2015

PubMed for Librarians: Customization – My NCBI – December 11, 2015

Questions? Email the NTC at: