Archive for March, 2014
Question: What is EFTS?
Answer: The Electronic Fund Transfer System or EFTS is a transaction-based electronic billing system developed by the University of Connecticut Health Center for interlibrary loan and document delivery charges. It has been operational in New England since 1996 and is available at “https://efts.uchc.edu.”
In the Pacific Southwest Region, over 65% of DOCLINE libraries are EFTS participants. All DOCLINE libraries are encouraged to join. DOCLINE provides an EFTS Transaction File Builder to create the transaction file of charges to upload to EFTS for billing borrowers. EFTS reduces the need to create invoices and to process reimbursement checks for interlibrary loans between participants. It also provides monthly detailed transaction reports, the ability to handle differential charges (such as additional rush or fax charges), the ability to vary charges to members of special groups, and the ability to handle non-DOCLINE transactions.
- Reduces interlibrary loan associated costs and improves cash flow
- Assists with collection development monitoring
- Reduces human error and increases efficiency
- Provides management reports
- The National Library of Medicine is committed to working with the University of Connecticut Health Center EFTS staff to expand the system on a national basis to DOCLINE libraries.
The University of Connecticut Health Center has an EFTS FAQ available. If you have any questions or need assistance, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-800-338-7657 or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org!
The National Library of Medicine has launched an online adaptation of Pick Your Poison: Intoxicating Pleasures and Medical Prescriptions, an exhibition with education resources that features items from the National Library of Medicine’s historical collection as well as the National Museum of American History in Washington, DC.
Mind-altering drugs have been used throughout the history of America. While some remain socially acceptable, such as alcohol and nicotine, others, like heroin and cocaine, are now outlawed because of their toxic, and intoxicating, characteristics. These classifications have shifted at different times in history, and will continue to change. This exhibition explores some of the factors that have shaped the changing definition of some of our most potent drugs.
Pick Your Poison includes a “Digital Gallery,” a selection of digitized, historical texts from the History of Medicine Division’s diverse collections, providing viewers new avenues to explore beyond the exhibition. Education resources include a lesson plan for grades 10-12 that investigates the exhibition content; two higher education modules; and an online activity. In addition, the web feature “Additional Resources at NLM” includes a selection of published contemporary articles on the various substances featured in the exhibition, available through PMC, which provides free access to over 2.8 million life science journal articles.
The online adaption of From DNA to Beer: Harnessing Nature in Medicine and Industry is expanded to include education resources. From DNA to Beer explores some of the processes, problems, and potential inherent in technologies that use life such as antibiotics and human growth hormones. The education resources delve into different aspects of the exhibition content, and include a lesson plan for grades 7-9; a higher education module; and an array of eight online activities. In addition, Additional Resources at NLM includes a selection of molecular models of the various bacteria and proteins related to the exhibition narrative, which are provided by the National Center of Biotechnology Information.
The National Library of Medicine has announced the launch of a new user interface for the IndexCat database, which offers a faster response time to searches; full record displays in search results; and record sorting and refinements. NLM uses the same search engine for its main Web site, as well as MedlinePlus, MedlinePlus en Español, the Directory of the History of Medicine Collections search engine, and the History of Medicine Finding Aids Consortium.
IndexCat simultaneously searches the digitized version of the printed Index-Catalogue of the Library of the Surgeon General’s Office; eTK for medieval Latin texts; and eVK2 for medieval English texts; and LocatorPlus. A post in the NLM Circulating Now blog offers additional information on IndexCat. There also are a number of new and revised FAQs and Help pages to assist with searching IndexCat. Additional details and illustrations are available in the most recent edition of the NLM Technical Bulletin.
A new Web resource from the National Institutes of Health is aimed at helping people address a sensitive subject—the end of life. The latest addition to NIHSeniorHealth.gov, the health and wellness website for older adults, the End of Life module provides visitors with information about the most common issues faced by the dying and their caregivers. The End of Life module describes the physical, mental, and emotional needs of people nearing the end of life and suggests ways to maintain their quality of life, such as hospice and home care. It also addresses the often complex practical concerns that can attend death, including financial issues, advance directives, caregiver support, and more. Other topics include:
- Addressing pain
- Types and places of end-of-life care
- Planning and paying for end-of-life care
- Handling health care issues
- When the end comes
- Coping with grief
- Research efforts
The End of Life module joins an impressive roster of research-based health topics geared toward older adults, including exercise and physical activity, long-term care, safe use of medicines and management of diseases such as stroke, diabetes, osteoporosis and Alzheimer’s disease. A joint effort of the National Institute on Aging (NIA) and the National Library of Medicine (NLM), NIHSeniorHealth.gov is designed to be senior friendly and is tailored to the cognitive and visual needs of older adults. The short, easy-to-read segments of information, large print, open captioned videos, and simple navigation make the information on the site easy for older adults to find, see, and understand.
Enrollment is now available for the Health Literacy Leadership Institute, June 9-13, 2014, offered through the Health Communication Program at Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston, MA. This one-week Institute is designed for professionals committed to improving the health literacy of healthcare providers and the public. Those working in health literacy and students interested in pursuing careers in health literacy are encouraged to attend.
Participants learn from faculty and guest instructors highly regarded for their pioneering work in medical education, adult literacy, and program evaluation. Peer learning and the sharing of research and best practice are central to the Institute’s educational approach. During the course of the week, participants work on a health literacy project of their choice resulting in a final product that is current, comprehensive, informed by research, and reflective of best practice.
The National Library of Medicine (NLM) TOXNET TRI and TOXMAP now include the TRI 2012 National Analysis data, the most current final information available. The Toxics Release Inventory (TRI), a resource of the US EPA, is a set of publicly available databases containing information on releases of specific toxic chemicals and their management as waste, as reported annually by US industrial and federal facilities. This inventory was established under the Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Act (EPCRA) of 1986. TRI’s data, beginning with the 1987 reporting year, covers air, water, land, and underground injection releases, as well as transfers to waste sites. In agreement with the Pollution Prevention Act of 1990, source reduction and recycling data is also included in TRI.
21,024 facilities reported to the TRI program in 2012 as required by EPCRA, with almost 80,000 submissions. A complete list of TRI chemicals required to be reported is available on EPA web site. TOXMAP maps on-site TRI releases and also includes EPA Superfund data.
The current trend in evaluation reporting is toward fewer words and more images. There are a number of companies that offer high-quality, royalty free photographs at minimal cost. Stockfresh, for example, charges as little as $1 per image. However, no-cost is even better than low-cost. Freelancers Union, a nonprofit organization dedicated to assisting freelance workers, recently published a list of the best websites for no-cost images. If you are looking for free images for your presentations or reports, check out their article, which also describes the difference between public domain, royalty-free and Creative Commons-licensed images.
Stanley Capela recently presented the webinar Recipe of Evaluation Techniques for the Real World, one of the American Evaluation Association’s (AEA) ongoing 20-minute Coffee Break webinars. The webinars, offered Thursdays at 11:00 am Pacific time, often present similar tools and tips that are also covered in the Tip a Day blog but allow for audience questions & answers and networking with the presenters. Capela’s recipe focused primarily on internal evaluation in non-profit or government settings where people are seeking realistic answers in response to assessment efforts. His tips include:
- Value People’s Time – all time is valuable, regardless of who you are working with, and clear communication on the intent of the evaluation helps to make the best use of everyone’s time.
- Ethical Conduct – working within the parameters of organizational and/or professional association codes of conducts in addition to established support of upper level administration will help to minimize the potential for ethical dilemmas.
- Know Your Enemies – be aware of those who are resistant to program evaluation and may try to undermine these efforts, and also know that you as an evaluator may be perceived as an enemy by others. Again, clear communication helps!
- Culture of Accountability – take the time to know the story of those you are working with – where are they coming from? What is their history with previous assessments? Were their needs met, or were there issues that had negative effects on relationships and outcomes?
- Do Something – avoid cycles of conducting reviews, identifying deficiencies, and outcomes that only include developing correction plans. Also important to note is that program evaluation does not solve management problems.
- A Picture is Worth 1,000 Words – find ways to integrate charts that direct the reader to the most important information clearly and concisely.
- Let Go of Your Ego – working from a mindset that accepts the people conducting the program itself will most likely ‘get the credit,’ and that your measure of success is doing your job to the best of your ability and knowing you made a difference.
- Give Back – develop a network of trusted colleagues, such as through personal and organization connections on LinkedIn and other platforms, share ideas, and ask questions, since others have probably encountered a similar situation or can connect you with those who have.
On April 8, 2014, the inaugural cohort of National Digital Stewardship Residents will present a symposium entitled Emerging Trends in Digital Stewardship at the National Library of Medicine (NLM), on the NIH campus in Bethesda, MD. The symposium will consist of panel presentations on topics including preserving social media and collaborative workspaces, open government and open data, and digital strategies for public and non-profit institutions. It will also feature a demonstration of BitCurator, an environment of digital forensics tools designed to help collecting institutions manage born-digital materials, developed by the School of Information and Library Science at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (SILS), and the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities (MITH). The symposium is free and open to the public. Pre-registration is encouraged.
The National Digital Stewardship Residency (NDSR) is an initiative of the Library of Congress (LC) and Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), to “provide a robust, hands-on learning experience to complement graduate-level training and education.” The inaugural cohort began their residency at Washington, DC area libraries, museums, and cultural institutions in September 2013. Ten residents are embedded in institutions around the area, each completing a project related to an aspect of digital preservation and stewardship. The NDSR program aims to “serve the American people by developing the next generation of stewards to collect, manage, preserve, and make accessible our digital assets.” NLM serves as a host institution for the National Digital Stewardship Residency, and since September has worked with its NDSR Resident Maureen Harlow to develop a thematic Web archive collection. This project builds on a pilot Web archive collection completed by NLM and featured in The Signal blog of the Library of Congress, in October 2012.
NLM has released a new Drug Information Subject Guide as the latest update in its subject guide series. These guides are based on the most frequently asked questions, and are starting points for health professionals, researchers, librarians, students, and others. Other published guides in this NLM series are about finding:
A Genetics/Genomics subject guide will be available later this year. NLM will develop more subject guides as needed. NLM welcomes comments, questions, and suggestions about all of the guides.