Wednesday, April 24, 2013

The Business of Hospital Libraries

Edit: Transcript now available at 

Join us tomorrow April 25th for a #medlibs Twitter chat at 6pm Pacific/9 Eastern on the topic of the business of hospital libraries, hosted by Michelle Kraft (@Krafty).

The Affordable Care Act has changed the way hospitals are reimbursed for medicare patients.  In the past hospitals made more money off of patients who were readmitted for things they were orginally discharged with.  Now, they are penalized for readmissions happening within 1 month of discharge for certain conditions.  This means that a lot of hospitals are going to be seeing losses of millions of dollars.
Where does the library stand in the face of these losses when technology has changed the way we search for things and users often search Google before asking a librarian. 
The librarian needs to get lean and mean and start operating his/her library like a hospital department that is responsible for achieving the specific goals of the hospital.  So if the hospital's goal is to reduce readmissions by x% then the librarian needs to figure out specifically how the library can help the hospital do that. (If your answer is I can give them more literature searches, then think again because that won't help you keep your job because administrators think they can do that already.) 

This tweet chat will discuss the various ways librarians can specifically show their worth to their own administration instead of passivley pointing to some standard or study illustrating the need for a hospital library.  We will be discussing ideas of what we can do to answer our administration's always constant question "What have you done for me lately and why should I give you money instead of another department?"  The game has changed and we need to change our strategy.

Here are some resources that I know will pop up during the discussion.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Boston Marathon: Serving disaster information needs

Edit: Transcript available at 

Select resources shared

What do you do when your library is impacted by events, such as this week's tragedy at the Boston marathon (edit: and West, TX chemical explosion...) that had hospital and public librarians in the area reeling?

Join us on Thursday, April 18th at 9pm Eastern time on Twitter for the #medlibs chat to discuss this with the National Library of Medicine Disaster Information Management Research Center (@NLM_DIMRC), which is a great place to start looking for tools and information to supplement your local resources and services. We will also have Myrna Morales (@SeerGenius) and Michelle Eberle (@MichelleEberle) from the New England Region of the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, who were both at the Boston Marathon. NN/LM can work with you to partner you up with buddy libraries and help you deal with the emotional impact. You are never alone when a disaster of any level hits.

Never participated in a Twitter hashtag chat before? Check out this overview and come on in, we're a supportive community. Your host for the chat (Nikki Dettmar @eagledawg) is happy to answer your questions on how to participate, and you may want to see the information and transcript from our November 5, 2012 chat with DIMRC about Hurricane Sandy as well. We look forward to having you join us!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

So you want to be a medical librarian?

Edit: Transcript available 

Join us Thursday April 11th, for a #medlibs Twitter chat at 6pm Pacific/9 Eastern on the topic of becoming a medical librarian, hosted by Kate Flewelling (@flewkate).

Experienced librarians: What's the best career advice you ever got? What was your path to medical librarianship?  What skills do you look for when hiring a new librarian?  New and aspiring medical librarians: Bring your career questions!  

Some resources to get the discussion rolling:

Cleveland AD. Miles to go before we sleep: education, technology, and the changing paradigms in health information. J Med Libr Assoc. 2011 Jan;99(1):61-9. (Dr. Cleveland's inspiring and challenging 2010 Janet Doe lecture on the current and future training needs for health information professionals)

MLA Career Center:

Why I Won't Hire You (not specifically medical but one of my all-time favorite career advice articles)

Never participated in a Twitter hashtag chat before? Check out this overview and join the fun!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

#medlibs support and involvement with clinical and translational science

Edit: Lots of great explanations and links in the transcript, available at 

Join us tomorrow, Thursday April 4th, for a #medlibs Twitter chat at 6pm Pacific/9 Eastern on the topic of CTSAs and libraries, hosted by Kristi Holmes (@kristiholmes).

Clinical and Translational Science: What is it? Where can I learn more information? How can libraries get involved? What types of library-based activities are already happening? What about libraries and CTSAs?

We invite everyone to join, no matter your perspective. We’ll be able to ask questions about this growing area for libraries and learn about service areas. We'll have a variety of great examples of ways that different types of libraries have begun to offer support and collaboration in this area. Best of all, we can share and learn from our colleagues who may already be working in this area to get their perspectives (at CTSA-awarded and CTSA-minded institutions – which is pretty much everywhere!)

Come join us! Share your questions! Share your experiences and tips! Share your goals and challenges! You can even share your favorite flavor of ice cream.

Helpful background information:
 Never participated in a Twitter hashtag chat before? Check out this overview and join the fun!