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Summer Safety

hikers Summer is often the time of year most people enjoy. It is more relaxing, a chance to enjoy outdoor activities, take vacations, and spend time with friends and family. However, many may also find it a time to take more precautions with sunburn, mosquito bites, and accidents. While not all accidents and health issues can be eliminated steps can be put in place to help prevent such concerns.

Sunlight provides health benefits including vitamin D which helps absorb calcium. It is also thought to boost mental health and cognitive function. But too much sun can lead to health problems one of which is Melanoma which is the most serious type of skin cancer which affect primarily adults but has also been diagnosed in children and teens. How to stay safe in the sun and which sunblock to use? Check out these resources:

Many are concerned about mosquitoes and not just their annoying itchy bites but concerns about Zika and other related illnesses. Though the Northwest may not have as much concern as warmer and more humid parts of the US it is good to consider using mosquito repellent. Which ones are safe and effective to use? Check these resources:

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PubMed Celebrates its 20th Anniversary!

PubMed logoPubMed was first released two decades ago in January 1996 as an experimental database under the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) retrieval system. The word “experimental” was dropped from the Web site in April 1997, and on June 26, 1997, a Capitol Hill Press conference officially announced free MEDLINE access via PubMed. PubMed continued to evolve and improve over the years and in the future has plans that include a new PubMed data management system that will streamline data submission for publishers and provide an interface for immediate correction of citation errors. Read more about PubMed’s timeline and milestones in the May-June, 2016 issues of the NLM Technical Bulletin

OWRC@HSL: The story of bringing a writing center to a health sciences library

writing center posterThis guest post is from Terry Ann Jankowski, Assistant Director for User Experience at the Health Sciences Library at the University of Washington, reporting about the project that was funded with a Medical Library Pilot Project Award received from the NN/LM PNR.

For the past 10 years, the Odegaard Writing and Research Center (OWRC) has operated in the University of Washington’s undergraduate library. It offers both drop-in and by appointment services to all UW students, staff and faculty. However, it was underutilized by the health sciences population because of its distance from the UW Health Sciences Library (HSL). In 2014 a public health student came to us and proposed that we offer appointments in HSL and OWRC@HSL was born. We offered 150 sessions that year at a 90% fill rate. Buoyed by success we applied for a Medical Library Project Award to offer more sessions, improve the publicity and work with the tutors to increase their understanding of the scientist as a writer.

With the funding we were able to offer almost 500 sessions during the year of the pilot with a 50% fill rate and reached 160 unique users.  In addition, usage by the health sciences population at the OUGL site increased by 25% so it would appear that the greater publicity enhanced the visibility of the service overall. Tutors attended discussions with HSL librarians to learn about resources for students and we developed a LibGuide of resources for them. The science librarians on campus sponsored (with financial assistance from our pilot) a panel of editors from STEM journals talking about what it is like to publish in the sciences and several tutors attended that as well.

Two of the top challenges we faced were meshing the tutors’ schedules with our clientele’s schedules as well as settling on a permanent location for OWRC@HSL. A future topic of conversation is how to provide distance support. Both the OWRC and HSL are committed to continuing the service as funding permits and are exploring future directions for this exciting new resource.

PNR Partners webinar next week

PNR Partners
Tuesday June 14
1:00-2:00pm PT, noon- 1:00pm Alaska, 2:00-3:00pm MT

Robin Champieux, Scholarly Communications Librarian at Oregon Health & Science University Library will present about the Open Insight program which is designed to inspire an understanding and the adoption of open science practices and activities. Meg Brunner, staff librarian at the University of Washington’s Alcohol & Drug Abuse Institute, will present about the online toolkit of resources created to increase outreach and education for Washington state’s communities needing reliable substance abuse information. Read more »

June is Men’s Health Month

silhouette of runnersWhile attending the Children’s Author luncheon at the Public Library Association conference in Denver this past April I couldn’t help but take note that Sherman Alexie began his talk by talking about a medical condition. The focus of his talk was not about medicine and medical care but he did focus several minutes  humorously recounting his medical experience regarding the benign brain tumor that was removed. He involved the men in the audience by noting that few men take the initiative to seek preventative health care, including himself, because every time they go they receive a diagnosis. So why would you go?!

Alexie’s logic may be questionable but is is not an unusual perception by many men.  Men tend to live unhealthier lives compared to women. They tend to drink and smoke more, take greater risks, and tend to delay or just not seek medical care such as regular checkups, health screening, or treatment. And, if you are a man of a racial or ethnic minority, your health is trailing behind even more than the general population. Read more »

Next PNR Rendezvous, June 15

PNR Rendezvous
Wednesday June 15
1:00-2:00pm PT, noon- 1:00pm Alaska, 2:00-3:00pm MT

Engaging Public Libraries in Community Health Information and Services is the name of the the next PNR Rendezvous presentation. In collaboration with the National Networks of Libraries of Medicine Pacific Northwest regional medical library (NN/LM PNR), University of Washington Information School MLIS candidate Liz Morris planned and executed outreach activities to gather input from public libraries in Idaho regarding their current efforts, needs, priorities and perceptions regarding community health information and services.

The broad goal of this work has been to further clarify and refine ways in which NN/LM PNR can continue to meet the health information needs of public libraries and their communities in Idaho (and across the network), via training or other services. Attend this Rendezvous to a) learn more about current trends in consumer health information in public libraries, b) discover key take-aways from the focus groups with the Idaho public library community, and c) share your perspective on community health outreach needs or activities at your library and in your community.

View a 1 minute promo video: https://youtu.be/3RJhfEqEAfM

Use this link to the project overview/description of Liz’s project: https://ischool.uw.edu/capstone/projects/2016/engaging-public-libraries-community-health-information-and-services Read more »