How Librarians Can Help Healthcare Professionals

I recently wrote a blog post for NEJM Resident 360 (NEJM subscription required) about how residents can better utilize librarian services.  How to Take Advantage Your Medical Librarian, details a few of the common ways librarians can help doctors during their residency program and beyond.  As a medical librarian, I know there are a lot of other things we can do for residents and other healthcare professionals.  There are medical librarians who are doing different types of services, reaching out to provide information in creative ways, and doing things beyond the walls of the library that help our healthcare professionals in ways I have never dreamed.

So this post is sort of a “shared” post.  I would like any medical librarian to either comment below, tweet, or email* me the ways you help your healthcare professionals.  Healthcare professionals can be anyone (doctor, student, nurse, researchers, social work, pastoral care, hospital administration, etc.) that work with biomedical information, patients or families of patients, or who help fellow healthcare professionals in their jobs.

I will kick things off:

  • Create online journal club portals for nurses, enabling them to get CEs
  • Acquire spiritual & religious resources from other libraries to help pastoral care
  • Track every article written in a journal with an impact factor by the institution’s researchers & authors and provide those statistics, citation analysis, and collaboration impact to individuals and departments within the institution.
  • Help create treatment and care guidelines within the institution and with national associations.

Don’t leave me hanging…. contact me and I will add them to the bullet list. IF you have online documentation (research, website, article) give me the URL and I will link to that within the bullet point.
If you are a member of MLA use my email contact in the MLA directory


2 thoughts on “How Librarians Can Help Healthcare Professionals”

  1. Medical librarians can provided tailored patient education materials or packets and extend a reliable and trustworthy relationship between consumers and healthcare providers.

    Medical librarians can help residents and practitioners to learn about health information literacy issues and provide access to health information at different levels of literacy.

    Medical libraries can compile and provide evidence-based information on CAMs (e.g., the efficacy and adverse effects of herbs used to alleviate hot flashes in menopause), enabling health practitioners to support patient learning.

  2. After reading the expert searching listserv posts this morning, I’ll add: medical librarians can a) comment on the literature search methods used in published literature, and b) become reviewers for journals in order to help ensure quality literature review methods, particularly in systematic reviews. Dr. Thomas Grindlay, Dermatology Information Specialist for the Centre of Evidence Based Dermatology at Nottingham posted that he recently had a letter to the editor published in the British J Dermatology on this subject, and that “I understand the journal is also going to commission an editorial about search strategies for systematic reviews and the desirability of involving a librarian or information specialist in systematic reviews.”

    It is worthwhile seeking out discussion on this topic in the archive of posts to this thread, “Letter to the editor about search strategies for overviews of systematic reviews.” In another response, a Karolinska Institute librarian also commented about letters he’d had published in BMJ on this topic (Carl Gornitzki, 3/15/17).

    This topic may be a worthy one for a research study. It extends the role of the expert searcher, and boosts awareness of expertise within discipline-focused publications.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.