by Terri Ottosen, Consumer Health Coordinator, NN/LM, SEA Office
The National Network of Libraries of Medicine, Southeastern Atlantic Region is committed to serving the needs of its members. Toward that effort, the Consumer Health Program has established a CHollaboration resource designed for network members to share consumer health best practices. We decided to call it CHollaboration in the spirit of Consumer Health collaboration and our quest to maintain clever titles. You may have already used the LibGuides on the state pages: health literacy and electronic medical records. The Southeastern Atlantic Region is now sharing our LibGuides with the entire country and all Regions of the NN/LM. (See http://guides.nnlm.gov) If you’ve bookmarked our previous SEA Guides URL, you can continue to access our guides that way, but you can also access them with the new URL. The Chollaboration space is a specific kind of LibGuide called a CampusGuide, which enables password protection of the guide while allowing members to post and share their successful outreach projects and ideas. To directly access this guide, see http://guides.nnlm.gov/chollaboration.
Nancy Patterson, Community Outreach Coordinator, and Terri Ottosen, Consumer Health Coordinator, share the responsibilities for managing the Consumer Health Program for the Region, although each targets a different audience. Nancy primarily serves community and faith organizations, and Terri focuses on public and health sciences librarians along with the general consumer. The creation of this collaborative space is the direct result of feedback received at the Year 04 Regional Planning Meeting which also revealed a need for ready-made, “to-go” outreach materials for the many outreach leaders who have networks in place and passion for their work but lack the time to create materials. Nancy will be working on developing packaged outreach models over the next few years, the first of which will be a health ministry outreach model. Once completed, the models will be uploaded to the CHollaboration space. All members of CHollaboration are encouraged to upload their own successful outreach models as well. Together, we can create a wealth of resources to help organizations and individuals engage in the outreach required to improve the health of their communities.
Several different platforms were considered for this collaborative space, including Moodle, which is the course management system the NN/LM uses for distance education classes, a wiki, which is less than ideal considering security concerns, and other means of providing a secure, shared space. Having gained access to SpringShare’s LibGuides, it was decided to make use of the additional features of CampusGuides, which will easily allow network members to securely share best practices. This platform will also allow sharing by other Regions of the NN/LM, making it a truly cross-regional effort. Once we see how this initial collaborative space works, we will promote it and open it to other Regions in the network. We know that there are some very creative and successful projects in the consumer health field and we’d love to see these projects shared and replicated whenever possible. The collaborative space has a discussion board, so members can post questions or comments to each other, as well as a link to share websites or material locations. Currently, the following categories are tabbed in the CHollaboration space: Training, Outreach Models, Exhibits/Health Fairs, Projects, Webinars, and Websites. We also welcome suggestions for additional categories or anything you may think of that would improve the Guide. Please think of this space as yours, as we are completely open to your ideas. To view the CampusGuide CHollaboration, please visit: http://guides.nnlm.gov/chollaboration. To submit your idea, project or anything else you’d like to share, please contact Terri (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Nancy (email@example.com) for the password. If you’ve never created or added to a LibGuide before, we’d also be happy to accept your submission and add it to the site ourselves. We are excited to see what results from our CHollaboration.