The evolving role of the librarian in evidence-based medicine.
Librarians' participation in evidence-based medicine (EBM) is rooted in past practices, most notably in clinical medical librarianship. EBM extends the librarians' role beyond identification of the literature to involvement in practicing and teaching quality filtering and critical appraisal of the literature. These activities require librarians to acquire new knowledge and develop new skills. A professional development program for librarians at the Library of the Health Sciences (LHS) at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) is described. The program's goals are to increase librarians' skills and support the EBM curricular initiative at the UIC College of Medicine (COM). The unique program has been a collaborative effort of the LHS and the COM. The locally developed classes provide librarians with instruction in clinical study designs, statistical concepts, and critical appraisal of the literature. Other interventions such as an EBM round table are also described. The programs' success is measured by librarians' growing involvement in EBM medical curricula, journal clubs, and morning reports. Additionally, librarians gained competence in new skills and professional satisfaction from working collegially with COM students, residents, and faculty. (+info)
Web-based distance continuing education: a new way of thinking for students and instructors.
As people have more difficulty taking time away from work to attend conferences and workshops, the idea of offering courses via the Web has become more desirable. Addressing a need voiced by Medical Library Association membership, the authors developed a Web-based continuing-education course on the subject of the librarian's role in evidence-based medicine. The aim of the course was to provide medical librarians with a well-constructed, content-rich learning experience available to them at their convenience via the Web. This paper includes a discussion of the considerations that need to be taken into account when developing Web-based courses, the issues that arise when the information delivery changes from face-to-face to online, the changing role of the instructor, and the pros and cons of offering Web-based versus traditional courses. The results of the beta test and future plans for the course are also discussed. (+info)
Expediting the transfer of evidence into practice: building clinical partnerships.
A librarian/clinician partnership was fostered in one hospital through the formation of the Evidence-based Practice Committee, with an ulterior goal of facilitating the transfer of evidence into practice. The paper will describe barriers to evidence-based practice and outline the committee's strategies for overcoming these barriers, including the development and promotion of a Web-based guide to evidence-based practice specifically designed for clinicians (health professionals). Educational strategies for use of the Web-based guide will also be addressed. Advantages of this partnership are that the skills of librarians in meeting the needs of clinicians are maximized. The evidence-based practice skills of clinicians are honed and librarians make a valuable contribution to the knowledge-base of the clinical staff. The knowledge acquired through the partnership by both clinicians and librarians will increase the sophistication of the dialogue between the two groups and in turn will expedite the transfer of evidence into practice. (+info)
Republican Scientific-Medical Library, The Republic of Armenia: progress and programs.
In 1990, the Republican Scientific-Medical Library (RSML) of the Ministry of Health of Armenia in collaboration with the Fund for Armenian Relief created a vision of a national library network supported by information technology. This vision incorporated four goals: (1) to develop a national resource collection of biomedical literature accessible to all health professionals, (2) to develop a national network for access to bibliographic information, (3) to develop a systematic mechanism for sharing resources, and (4) to develop a national network of health sciences libraries. During the last decade, the RSML has achieved significant progress toward all four goals and has realized its vision of becoming a fully functional national library. The RSML now provides access to the literature of the health sciences including access to the Armenian medical literature, provides education and training to health professionals and health sciences librarians, and manages a national network of libraries of the major health care institutions in Armenia. The RSML is now able to provide rapid access to the biomedical literature and train health professionals and health sciences librarians in Armenia in information system use. This paper describes the evolution of the RSML and how it was accomplished. (+info)
Study to assess the compensation and skills of medical library professionals relative to information technology professionals.
PURPOSE: The study seeks to determine how medical library professionals performing information-technology (IT) roles are compensated and how their positions are designed compared to information technology staff in their institutions. METHODS: 550 medical library directors in hospital and academic medical libraries were surveyed. The data was then compared to survey data from other compensation studies of the IT industry. RESULTS: There is a gap in compensation between medical library professionals and IT professionals performing similar functions using information technology. Technology-intense library jobs are compensated at higher levels than more traditional jobs. CONCLUSIONS: To compete with IT salaries, managers of medical library professionals will need to be ever more cognizant of the employment practices of IT professionals in nonmedical library disciplines. It is typically in the medical library's best interest to ensure that IT-related jobs, accountabilities, and capabilities of the medical library are known and understood by others, especially in the human resources and information technology staff departments. (+info)
Web-based Loansome Doc, librarians, and end users: results from a survey of the Southeast Region.
OBJECTIVES: The study examines how Loansome Doc services are implemented and used by libraries in the Southeast Region and describe end users' experiences with and attitudes toward Loansome Doc. METHODS: 251 active DOCLINE libraries and 867 Loansome Doc users were surveyed. RESULTS: Roughly one half of the libraries offered Loansome Doc services. Of those that did not, most indicated no plans to offer it in the future. The majority had a small number of end users and experienced minimal increases in interlibrary loan activity. Problems were relatively rare. Satisfaction with Loansome Doc was high among all types of libraries. End users were usually physicians or other health care professionals who requested articles for research and patient care. Most learned about Loansome Doc through PubMed or Internet Grateful Med. End users appeared to be largely self-taught or received informal instruction in Loansome Doc. Loansome Doc filled document requests in a timely manner, and end users reported being satisfied with the service. CONCLUSIONS: Greater promotion of what Loansome Doc is and how it can benefit libraries can increase the number of participating libraries. While satisfaction of Loansome Doc end users is high, satisfaction could be increased with more help on the PubMed screen, more library training, and faster delivery methods. (+info)
Health sciences libraries in Kuwait: a study of their resources, facilities, and services.
The purpose of this study was to examine the current status of health sciences libraries in Kuwait in terms of their staff, collections, facilities, use of information technology, information services, and cooperation. Seventeen libraries participated in the study. Results show that the majority of health sciences libraries were established during the 1980s. Their collections are relatively small. The majority of their staff is nonprofessional. The majority of libraries provide only basic information services. Cooperation among libraries is limited. Survey results also indicate that a significant number of health sciences libraries are not automated. Some recommendations for the improvement of existing resources, facilities, and services are made. (+info)
Bringing the best of medical librarianship to the patient team.
This article introduces a series of articles examining the state of the medical library profession as practiced in the clinical context. It is widely understood that many changes across the spectrum of medical librarianship practice have been brought about by both technological advances and economic realities. These changes have created strains felt by many in the profession. Discussions of evolving roles for medical librarians that have gone on for years have taken on a new sense of urgency, not just because support of library services is at stake, but also because new opportunities, which many are eager to explore, await librarians. In June 2000, an editorial appearing in a mainstream medical journal proposed a reinvention of clinical librarianship that, if designed as presented in the editorial, would have a dramatic effect on current hospital-based library practice. This series of articles was developed in an effort to provide thoughtful consideration of the "informationist" model and to present new ways to look at the core competencies that define the profession. (+info)