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Communities of Interest

The NNLM New England Region’s Communities of Interest (COI) foster emerging roles for librarians in dynamic themes in the provision of health information.  Members of Communities of Interests share ideas, knowledge, and experiences to help each other improve their library’s services.  The Communities of Interest focus on three areas: Substance Use Disorder, Graphic Medicine, and Hospital Librarianship.

COI’s fulfill the dual role of supporting emerging educational needs of the Network while simultaneously increasing awareness of the National Library of Medicine and NNLM resources and services. Long-term outcomes include providing Network Members with practical skills and tools to succeed in health sciences librarianship and expanding the reach of the Network to health care providers, public health professionals, and the public.

Professional Development and Collaboration

COI’s host e-learning programs to keep Network Members up-to-date with trends in the profession.  The annual in-person events bring Network Members together to network, dialogue and create partnerships.  COIs offer the opportunity to cultivate skills through group projects. The COI program serves the emerging educational needs of Network Members, provides responsive and relevant professional development in the region, improves communication between Network Members as well as between NER and the membership, creates cross-disciplinary health information education opportunities, increases awareness of NER funding opportunities, and increases the number of quality proposals for NER funding.

    Graphic Medicine

    Graphic Medicine is an emerging field that considers the role that comics can play in medicine – including medical education, health literacy, healthcare communication, and much more. Each of these areas include heavy involvement of librarians. The NER Graphic Medicine initiative seeks to provide training and tools, to inform and encourage growth in the use of comics in our work. This includes on-site and distance trainings, tools to aid in collection development and research, and a Book Club Kit lending program.

    Substance Use Disorder

    Substance Use Disorder is a serious and pervasive problem in many communities. This initiative seeks to provide training, tools, information, and resources that will serve anyone affected, while also breaking down barriers and stigma around this topic. 

    Hospital Librarianship

    The NER Hospital Librarians COI addresses the professional development needs of hospital librarians in the New England Region. COI activities include webinars, blog posts and in-person networking. Our Hospital Librarians Advisory Group (HLAG) identifies key topics of concern.

    How to Get Involved