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1.  New activities and changing roles of health sciences librarians: a systematic review, 1990–2012 
Objective:
The paper identifies and documents new health sciences librarian activities and roles during the period from 1990–2012.
Methods:
A systematic review of the literature was conducted using MEDLINE, Library and Information Abstracts, Library Literature, Scopus, and Web of Science. To find new roles that might not yet have been described in the literature, job announcements published in the Medical Library Association email discussion list archives from 2008–2012 were searched. For inclusion, an article needed to contain a substantive description of a new role and/or activity performed by librarians and be in the field of medical or health sciences librarianship. Papers that did not describe an actual (rather than proposed) librarian role were excluded.
Results:
New roles identified through the literature search were: embedded librarians (such as clinical informationist, bioinformationist, public health informationist, disaster information specialist); systematic review librarian; emerging technologies librarian; continuing medical education librarian; grants development librarian; and data management librarian. New roles identified through job announcements were digital librarian, metadata librarian, scholarly communication librarian, and translational research librarian. New twists to old roles were also identified: clinical medical librarian, instruction librarian, outreach librarian, and consumer health librarian.
Conclusions:
While the main purposes of health sciences librarianship remain the same, the new roles represent major new activities so that, for many librarians, daily on-the-job work is completely different.
Implications:
This list of new activities should inform students contemplating medical librarianship careers, guide formal and continuing education programs, and encourage other librarians to consider these new services.
doi:10.3163/1536-5050.101.4.008
PMCID: PMC3794682  PMID: 24163598
2.  Home Telehealth for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) 
Executive Summary
In July 2010, the Medical Advisory Secretariat (MAS) began work on a Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) evidentiary framework, an evidence-based review of the literature surrounding treatment strategies for patients with COPD. This project emerged from a request by the Health System Strategy Division of the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care that MAS provide them with an evidentiary platform on the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of COPD interventions.
After an initial review of health technology assessments and systematic reviews of COPD literature, and consultation with experts, MAS identified the following topics for analysis: vaccinations (influenza and pneumococcal), smoking cessation, multidisciplinary care, pulmonary rehabilitation, long-term oxygen therapy, noninvasive positive pressure ventilation for acute and chronic respiratory failure, hospital-at-home for acute exacerbations of COPD, and telehealth (including telemonitoring and telephone support). Evidence-based analyses were prepared for each of these topics. For each technology, an economic analysis was also completed where appropriate. In addition, a review of the qualitative literature on patient, caregiver, and provider perspectives on living and dying with COPD was conducted, as were reviews of the qualitative literature on each of the technologies included in these analyses.
The Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Mega-Analysis series is made up of the following reports, which can be publicly accessed at the MAS website at: http://www.hqontario.ca/en/mas/mas_ohtas_mn.html.
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) Evidentiary Framework
Influenza and Pneumococcal Vaccinations for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Smoking Cessation for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Community-Based Multidisciplinary Care for Patients With Stable Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Pulmonary Rehabilitation for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Long-term Oxygen Therapy for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Noninvasive Positive Pressure Ventilation for Acute Respiratory Failure Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Noninvasive Positive Pressure Ventilation for Chronic Respiratory Failure Patients With Stable Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Hospital-at-Home Programs for Patients With Acute Exacerbations of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Home Telehealth for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Cost-Effectiveness of Interventions for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Using an Ontario Policy Model
Experiences of Living and Dying With COPD: A Systematic Review and Synthesis of the Qualitative Empirical Literature
For more information on the qualitative review, please contact Mita Giacomini at: http://fhs.mcmaster.ca/ceb/faculty_member_giacomini.htm.
For more information on the economic analysis, please visit the PATH website: http://www.path-hta.ca/About-Us/Contact-Us.aspx.
The Toronto Health Economics and Technology Assessment (THETA) collaborative has produced an associated report on patient preference for mechanical ventilation. For more information, please visit the THETA website: http://theta.utoronto.ca/static/contact.
Objective
The objective of this analysis was to conduct an evidence-based assessment of home telehealth technologies for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) in order to inform recommendations regarding the access and provision of these services in Ontario. This analysis was one of several analyses undertaken to evaluate interventions for COPD. The perspective of this assessment was that of the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, a provincial payer of medically necessary health care services.
Clinical Need: Condition and Target Population
Canada is facing an increase in chronic respiratory diseases due in part to its aging demographic. The projected increase in COPD will put a strain on health care payers and providers. There is therefore an increasing demand for telehealth services that improve access to health care services while maintaining or improving quality and equality of care. Many telehealth technologies however are in the early stages of development or diffusion and thus require study to define their application and potential harms or benefits. The Medical Advisory Secretariat (MAS) therefore sought to evaluate telehealth technologies for COPD.
Technology
Telemedicine (or telehealth) refers to using advanced information and communication technologies and electronic medical devices to support the delivery of clinical care, professional education, and health-related administrative services.
Generally there are 4 broad functions of home telehealth interventions for COPD:
to monitor vital signs or biological health data (e.g., oxygen saturation),
to monitor symptoms, medication, or other non-biologic endpoints (e.g., exercise adherence),
to provide information (education) and/or other support services (such as reminders to exercise or positive reinforcement), and
to establish a communication link between patient and provider.
These functions often require distinct technologies, although some devices can perform a number of these diverse functions. For the purposes of this review, MAS focused on home telemonitoring and telephone only support technologies.
Telemonitoring (or remote monitoring) refers to the use of medical devices to remotely collect a patient’s vital signs and/or other biologic health data and the transmission of those data to a monitoring station for interpretation by a health care provider.
Telephone only support refers to disease/disorder management support provided by a health care provider to a patient who is at home via telephone or videoconferencing technology in the absence of transmission of patient biologic data.
Research Questions
What is the effectiveness, cost-effectiveness, and safety of home telemonitoring compared with usual care for patients with COPD?
What is the effectiveness, cost-effectiveness, and safety of telephone only support programs compared with usual care for patients with COPD?
Research Methods
Literature Search
Search Strategy
A literature search was performed on November 3, 2010 using OVID MEDLINE, MEDLINE In-Process and Other Non-Indexed Citations, EMBASE, the Cumulative Index to Nursing & Allied Health Literature (CINAHL), the Cochrane Library, and the International Agency for Health Technology Assessment (INAHTA) for studies published from January 1, 2000 until November 3, 2010. Abstracts were reviewed by a single reviewer and, for those studies meeting the eligibility criteria, full-text articles were obtained. Reference lists were also examined for any additional relevant studies not identified through the search. Articles with unknown eligibility were reviewed with a second clinical epidemiologist, and then a group of epidemiologists until consensus was established. The quality of evidence was assessed as high, moderate, low, or very low according to GRADE methodology.
Inclusion Criteria – Question #1
frequent transmission of a patient’s physiological data collected at home and without a health care professional physically present to health care professionals for routine monitoring through the use of a communication technology;
monitoring combined with a coordinated management and feedback system based on transmitted data;
telemonitoring as a key component of the intervention (subjective determination);
usual care as provided by the usual care provider for the control group;
randomized controlled trials (RCTs), controlled clinical trials (CCTs), systematic reviews, and/or meta-analyses;
published between January 1, 2000 and November 3, 2010.
Inclusion Criteria – Question #2
scheduled or frequent contact between patient and a health care professional via telephone or videoconferencing technology in the absence of transmission of patient physiological data;
monitoring combined with a coordinated management and feedback system based on transmitted data;
telephone support as a key component of the intervention (subjective determination);
usual care as provided by the usual care provider for the control group;
RCTs, CCTs, systematic reviews, and/or meta-analyses;
published between January 1, 2000 and November 3, 2010.
Exclusion Criteria
published in a language other than English;
intervention group (and not control) receiving some form of home visits by a medical professional, typically a nurse (i.e., telenursing) beyond initial technology set-up and education, to collect physiological data, or to somehow manage or treat the patient;
not recording patient or health system outcomes (e.g., technical reports testing accuracy, reliability or other development-related outcomes of a device, acceptability/feasibility studies, etc.);
not using an independent control group that received usual care (e.g., studies employing historical or periodic controls).
Outcomes of Interest
hospitalizations (primary outcome)
mortality
emergency department visits
length of stay
quality of life
other […]
Subgroup Analyses (a priori)
length of intervention (primary)
severity of COPD (primary)
Quality of Evidence
The quality of evidence assigned to individual studies was determined using a modified CONSORT Statement Checklist for Randomized Controlled Trials. (1) The CONSORT Statement was adapted to include 3 additional quality measures: the adequacy of control group description, significant differential loss to follow-up between groups, and greater than or equal to 30% study attrition. Individual study quality was defined based on total scores according to the CONSORT Statement checklist: very low (0 to < 40%), low (≥ 40 to < 60%), moderate (≥ 60 to < 80%), and high (≥ 80 to 100%).
The quality of the body of evidence was assessed as high, moderate, low, or very low according to the GRADE Working Group criteria. The following definitions of quality were used in grading the quality of the evidence:
Summary of Findings
Six publications, representing 5 independent trials, met the eligibility criteria for Research Question #1. Three trials were RCTs reported across 4 publications, whereby patients were randomized to home telemonitoring or usual care, and 2 trials were CCTs, whereby patients or health care centers were nonrandomly assigned to intervention or usual care.
A total of 310 participants were studied across the 5 included trials. The mean age of study participants in the included trials ranged from 61.2 to 74.5 years for the intervention group and 61.1 to 74.5 years for the usual care group. The percentage of men ranged from 40% to 64% in the intervention group and 46% to 72% in the control group.
All 5 trials were performed in a moderate to severe COPD patient population. Three trials initiated the intervention following discharge from hospital. One trial initiated the intervention following a pulmonary rehabilitation program. The final trial initiated the intervention during management of patients at an outpatient clinic.
Four of the 5 trials included oxygen saturation (i.e., pulse oximetry) as one of the biological patient parameters being monitored. Additional parameters monitored included forced expiratory volume in one second, peak expiratory flow, and temperature.
There was considerable clinical heterogeneity between trials in study design, methods, and intervention/control. In relation to the telemonitoring intervention, 3 of the 5 included studies used an electronic health hub that performed multiple functions beyond the monitoring of biological parameters. One study used only a pulse oximeter device alone with modem capabilities. Finally, in 1 study, patients measured and then forwarded biological data to a nurse during a televideo consultation. Usual care varied considerably between studies.
Only one trial met the eligibility criteria for Research Question #2. The included trial was an RCT that randomized 60 patients to nurse telephone follow-up or usual care (no telephone follow-up). Participants were recruited from the medical department of an acute-care hospital in Hong Kong and began receiving follow-up after discharge from the hospital with a diagnosis of COPD (no severity restriction). The intervention itself consisted of only two 10-to 20-minute telephone calls, once between days 3 to 7 and once between days 14 to 20, involving a structured, individualized educational and supportive programme led by a nurse that focused on 3 components: assessment, management options, and evaluation.
Regarding Research Question #1:
Low to very low quality evidence (according to GRADE) finds non-significant effects or conflicting effects (of significant or non-significant benefit) for all outcomes examined when comparing home telemonitoring to usual care.
There is a trend towards significant increase in time free of hospitalization and use of other health care services with home telemonitoring, but these findings need to be confirmed further in randomized trials of high quality.
There is severe clinical heterogeneity between studies that limits summary conclusions.
The economic impact of home telemonitoring is uncertain and requires further study.
Home telemonitoring is largely dependent on local information technologies, infrastructure, and personnel, and thus the generalizability of external findings may be low. Jurisdictions wishing to replicate home telemonitoring interventions should likely test those interventions within their jurisdictional framework before adoption, or should focus on home-grown interventions that are subjected to appropriate evaluation and proven effective.
Regarding Research Question #2:
Low quality evidence finds significant benefit in favour of telephone-only support for self-efficacy and emergency department visits when compared to usual care, but non-significant results for hospitalizations and hospital length of stay.
There are very serious issues with the generalizability of the evidence and thus additional research is required.
PMCID: PMC3384362  PMID: 23074421
3.  Evidence-based Medicine Search: a customizable federated search engine 
Purpose: This paper reports on the development of a tool by the Arizona Health Sciences Library (AHSL) for searching clinical evidence that can be customized for different user groups.
Brief Description: The AHSL provides services to the University of Arizona's (UA's) health sciences programs and to the University Medical Center. Librarians at AHSL collaborated with UA College of Medicine faculty to create an innovative search engine, Evidence-based Medicine (EBM) Search, that provides users with a simple search interface to EBM resources and presents results organized according to an evidence pyramid. EBM Search was developed with a web-based configuration component that allows the tool to be customized for different specialties.
Outcomes/Conclusion: Informal and anecdotal feedback from physicians indicates that EBM Search is a useful tool with potential in teaching evidence-based decision making. While formal evaluation is still being planned, a tool such as EBM Search, which can be configured for specific user populations, may help lower barriers to information resources in an academic health sciences center.
doi:10.3163/1536-5050.96.2.108
PMCID: PMC2268222  PMID: 18379665
4.  Long-Term Oxygen Therapy for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) 
Executive Summary
In July 2010, the Medical Advisory Secretariat (MAS) began work on a Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) evidentiary framework, an evidence-based review of the literature surrounding treatment strategies for patients with COPD. This project emerged from a request by the Health System Strategy Division of the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care that MAS provide them with an evidentiary platform on the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of COPD interventions.
After an initial review of health technology assessments and systematic reviews of COPD literature, and consultation with experts, MAS identified the following topics for analysis: vaccinations (influenza and pneumococcal), smoking cessation, multidisciplinary care, pulmonary rehabilitation, long-term oxygen therapy, noninvasive positive pressure ventilation for acute and chronic respiratory failure, hospital-at-home for acute exacerbations of COPD, and telehealth (including telemonitoring and telephone support). Evidence-based analyses were prepared for each of these topics. For each technology, an economic analysis was also completed where appropriate. In addition, a review of the qualitative literature on patient, caregiver, and provider perspectives on living and dying with COPD was conducted, as were reviews of the qualitative literature on each of the technologies included in these analyses.
The Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Mega-Analysis series is made up of the following reports, which can be publicly accessed at the MAS website at: http://www.hqontario.ca/en/mas/mas_ohtas_mn.html.
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) Evidentiary Framework
Influenza and Pneumococcal Vaccinations for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Smoking Cessation for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Community-Based Multidisciplinary Care for Patients With Stable Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Pulmonary Rehabilitation for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Long-term Oxygen Therapy for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Noninvasive Positive Pressure Ventilation for Acute Respiratory Failure Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Noninvasive Positive Pressure Ventilation for Chronic Respiratory Failure Patients With Stable Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Hospital-at-Home Programs for Patients With Acute Exacerbations of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Home Telehealth for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Cost-Effectiveness of Interventions for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Using an Ontario Policy Model
Experiences of Living and Dying With COPD: A Systematic Review and Synthesis of the Qualitative Empirical Literature
For more information on the qualitative review, please contact Mita Giacomini at: http://fhs.mcmaster.ca/ceb/faculty member_giacomini.htm.
For more information on the economic analysis, please visit the PATH website: http://www.path-hta.ca/About-Us/Contact-Us.aspx.
The Toronto Health Economics and Technology Assessment (THETA) collaborative has produced an associated report on patient preference for mechanical ventilation. For more information, please visit the THETA website: http://theta.utoronto.ca/static/contact.
Objective
The objective of this health technology assessment was to determine the effectiveness, cost-effectiveness, and safety of long-term oxygen therapy (LTOT) for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Clinical Need: Condition and Target Population
Oxygen therapy is used in patients with COPD with hypoxemia, or very low blood oxygen levels, because they may have difficulty obtaining sufficient oxygen from inspired air.
Technology
Long-term oxygen therapy is extended use of oxygen. Oxygen therapy is delivered as a gas from an oxygen source. Different oxygen sources are: 1) oxygen concentrators, electrical units delivering oxygen converted from room air; 2) liquid oxygen systems, which deliver gaseous oxygen stored as liquid in a tank; and 3) oxygen cylinders, which contain compressed gaseous oxygen. All are available in portable versions. Oxygen is breathed in through a nasal cannula or through a mask covering the mouth and nose. The treating clinician determines the flow rate, duration of use, method of administration, and oxygen source according to individual patient needs. Two landmark randomized controlled trials (RCTs) of patients with COPD established the role of LTOT in COPD. Questions regarding the use of LTOT, however, still remain.
Research Question
What is the effectiveness, cost-effectiveness, and safety of LTOT compared with no LTOT in patients with COPD, who are stratified by severity of hypoxemia?
Research Methods
Literature Search
Search Strategy
A literature search was performed on September 8, 2010 using OVID MEDLINE, MEDLINE In-Process and Other Non-Indexed Citations, EMBASE, CINAHL, the Cochrane Library, and INAHTA for studies published from January 1, 2007 to September 8, 2010.
A single clinical epidemiologist reviewed the abstracts, obtained full-text articles for studies meeting the eligibility criteria, and examined reference lists for additional relevant studies not identified through the literature search. A second clinical epidemiologist and then a group of epidemiologists reviewed articles with an unknown eligibility until consensus was established.
Inclusion Criteria
patients with mild, moderate, or severe hypoxemia;
English-language articles published between January 1, 2007 and September 8, 2010;
journal articles reporting on effectiveness, cost-effectiveness, or safety for the comparison of interest;
clearly described study design and methods;
health technology assessments, systematic reviews, RCTs, or prospective cohort observational studies;
any type of observational study for the evaluation of safety.
Exclusion Criteria
no hypoxemia
non-English papers
animal or in vitro studies
case reports, case series, or case-case studies
studies comparing different oxygen therapy regimens
studies on nocturnal oxygen therapy
studies on short-burst, palliative, or ambulatory oxygen (supplemental oxygen during exercise or activities of daily living)
Outcomes of Interest
mortality/survival
hospitalizations
readmissions
forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1)
forced vital capacity (FVC)
FEV1/FVC
pulmonary hypertension
arterial partial pressure of oxygen (PaO2)
arterial partial pressure of carbon dioxide (PaCO2)
end-exercise dyspnea score
endurance time
health-related quality of life
Note: Outcomes of interest were formulated according to existing studies, with arterial pressure of oxygen and carbon dioxide as surrogate outcomes.
Summary of Findings
Conclusions
Based on low quality of evidence, LTOT (~ 15 hours/day) decreases all-cause mortality in patients with COPD who have severe hypoxemia (PaO2 ~ 50 mm Hg) and heart failure.
The effect for all-cause mortality had borderline statistical significance when the control group was no LTOT: one study.
Based on low quality of evidence, there is no beneficial effect of LTOT on all-cause mortality at 3 and 7 years in patients with COPD who have mild-to-moderate hypoxemia (PaO2 ~ 59-65 mm Hg)1
Based on very low quality of evidence, there is some suggestion that LTOT may have a beneficial effect over time on FEV1 and PaCO2 in patients with COPD who have severe hypoxemia and heart failure: improved methods are needed.
Based on very low quality of evidence, there is no beneficial effect of LTOT on lung function or exercise factors in patients with COPD who have mild-to-moderate hypoxemia, whether survivors or nonsurvivors are assessed.
Based on low to very low quality of evidence, LTOT does not prevent readmissions in patients with COPD who have severe hypoxemia. Limited data suggest LTOT increases the risk of hospitalizations.
Limited work has been performed evaluating the safety of LTOT by severity of hypoxemia.
Based on low to very low quality of evidence, LTOT may have a beneficial effect over time on health-related quality of life in patients with COPD who have severe hypoxemia. Limited work using disease-specific instruments has been performed.
Ethical constraints of not providing LTOT to eligible patients with COPD prohibit future studies from examining LTOT outcomes in an ideal way.
PMCID: PMC3384376  PMID: 23074435
5.  New measures for new roles: defining and measuring the current practices of health sciences librarians 
The roles of academic health sciences librarians are continually evolving as librarians initiate new programs and services in response to developments in computer technology and user demands. However, statistics currently collected by libraries do not accurately reflect or measure these new roles. It is essential for librarians to document, measure, and evaluate these new activities to continue to meet the needs of users and to ensure the viability of their professional role. To determine what new measures should be compiled, the authors examined current statistics, user demands, professional literature, and current activities of librarians as reported in abstracts of poster sessions at Medical Library Association annual meetings. Three new categories of services to be measured are proposed. The first, consultation, groups activities such as quality filtering and individual point-of-need instruction. The second, outreach, includes activities such as working as liaisons, participating in grand rounds or morning report, and providing continuing education. The third area, Web authoring, encompasses activities such as designing Web pages, creating online tutorials, and developing new products. Adding these three measures to those already being collected will provide a more accurate and complete depiction of the services offered by academic health sciences librarians.
PMCID: PMC100761  PMID: 11999174
6.  Metropolis redux: the unique importance of library skills in informatics 
Objectives: The objective is to highlight the important role that librarians have in teaching within a successful medical informatics program. Librarians regularly utilize skills that, although not technology dependent, are essential to conducting computer-based research. The Metropolis analogy is used to introduce the part librarians play as informatics partners. Science fiction is a modern mythology that, beyond a technical exterior, has lasting value in its ability to reflect the human condition. The teaching of medical informatics, an intersection of technology and knowledge, is also most relevant when it transcends the operation of databases and systems. Librarians can teach students to understand, research, and utilize information beyond specific technologies.
Methods: A survey of twenty-six informatics programs was conducted during 2002, with specific emphasis on the role of the library service.
Results: The survey demonstrated that librarians currently do have a central role in informatics instruction, and that library-focused skills form a significant part of the curriculum in many of those programs. In addition, librarians have creative opportunities to enhance their involvement in informatics training. As a sample program in the study, the development of the informatics course at the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences is included.
Conclusions: Medical informatics training is a wonderful opportunity for librarians to collaborate with professionals from the sciences and other information disciplines. Librarians' unique combination of human research and technology skills provides a valuable contribution to any program.
PMCID: PMC385302  PMID: 15098050
7.  Librarians’ Role in Development and Achievement of Central Library Users’ Information Literacy (a Case Study: Iran) 
Materia Socio-Medica  2013;25(4):238-241.
Introduction:
Due to the development of technologies, communications, databases and information resource varieties in today’s information age, our various social, economic, cultural and political needs cannot be fulfilled by relying merely on past knowledge and skills as done previously. Information literacy (IL) as a set of necessary skills for all of us is an effective way of treating new technologies and their effective application in our lives. The study aimed to survey the library users’ views in the Central Library of Babol University of Medical Sciences (The Library), Iran, on the role and influences of librarians on their IL development and improvement.
Methods:
This analytical survey used a researcher-made questionnaire for data collection. Research population consisted of all users referring Information Unit of The Library during 22 September - 20 December 2010. Of them, 150 users participating in at least 5 workshops held by The Library were selected as the study sample.
Results:
Based on the findings, 52.7 percent of the subjects rated the influence of the librarians on their IL development much and very much. 44.7 percent claimed that they more acquired IL skills from librarians rather than others. 100 (63.3%) subjects preferred workshops held by the librarian to other workshops.
Conclusion:
The users of Information Unit of The Library perceived the training IL skills by librarians as a main influencing factor in their IL development and achievement. This emphasized the necessity of teaching IL to users and training the librarians in better teaching IL skills to library user.
doi:10.5455/msm.2013.25.238-241
PMCID: PMC3914755  PMID: 24511265
Information Literacy; Library Users; Librarians; Babol University of Medical Sciences; Iran.
8.  Emerging roles for biomedical librarians: a survey of current practice, challenges, and changes 
Objective:
This study is intended to (1) identify emerging roles for biomedical librarians and determine how common these roles are in a variety of library settings, (2) identify barriers to taking on new roles, and (3) determine how librarians are developing the capacity to take on new roles.
Methods:
A survey was conducted of librarians in biomedical settings.
Results:
Most biomedical librarians are taking on new roles. The most common roles selected by survey respondents include analysis and enhancement of user experiences, support for social media, support for systematic reviews, clinical informationist, help for faculty or staff with authorship issues, and implementation of researcher profiling and collaboration tools. Respondents in academic settings are more likely to report new roles than hospital librarians are, but some new roles are common in both settings. Respondents use a variety of methods to free up time for new roles, but predominant methods vary between directors and librarians and between academic and hospital respondents. Lack of time is the biggest barrier that librarians face when trying to adopt new roles. New roles are associated with increased collaboration with individuals and/or groups outside the library.
Conclusion and Implications:
This survey documents the widespread incorporation of new roles in biomedical libraries in the United States, as well as the barriers to adopting these roles and the means by which librarians are making time for them. The results of the survey can be used to inform strategic planning, succession planning, library education, and career development for biomedical librarians.
doi:10.3163/1536-5050.101.4.009
PMCID: PMC3794683  PMID: 24163599
9.  Preselecting literature for routine delivery to physicians in a community hospital-based patient care related reading program. 
Health sciences librarians have been actively responding to the changing information needs of users by extending services which involve the selection of literature in response to specific requests from health care personnel. A further development is Patient Care Related Reading (PCRR), a hospital-based program of continuing medical education in which the librarian actively participates in the preselection, packaging, and routine delivery of literature for use by physicians caring for patients with certain clinical disorders. Criteria for selection of literature packet topics were developed jointly by librarians and physicians at their own hospitals. Librarians compiled bibliographic material, reviewed articles, and prepared preliminary packets. Physicians reviewed these packets and made suggestions for each article. Librarians then prepared final packets following reviewers' recommendations and distributed them as a routine procedure to all physicians caring for patients with a diagnosis corresponding to prepared topics. Librarians were notified of patients with PCRR clinical problems by admitting office personnel, floor nurses, nursing supervisors, utilization review, and Professional Standards Review Organization personnel as a part of their usual activities. Packets are used by physicians to add to their fund of knowledge, and for review and teaching purposes. PCRR has provided increased visibility of the library and its many services. Recognition of the librarian's role in the program reinforces the concept of the community hospital library as a service-oriented entity, and helps to establish the library as an active partner in the development and implementation of hospital-based continuing education programs.
PMCID: PMC226795  PMID: 7225658
10.  Hospital-at-Home Programs for Patients With Acute Exacerbations of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) 
Executive Summary
In July 2010, the Medical Advisory Secretariat (MAS) began work on a Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) evidentiary framework, an evidence-based review of the literature surrounding treatment strategies for patients with COPD. This project emerged from a request by the Health System Strategy Division of the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care that MAS provide them with an evidentiary platform on the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of COPD interventions.
After an initial review of health technology assessments and systematic reviews of COPD literature, and consultation with experts, MAS identified the following topics for analysis: vaccinations (influenza and pneumococcal), smoking cessation, multidisciplinary care, pulmonary rehabilitation, long-term oxygen therapy, noninvasive positive pressure ventilation for acute and chronic respiratory failure, hospital-at-home for acute exacerbations of COPD, and telehealth (including telemonitoring and telephone support). Evidence-based analyses were prepared for each of these topics. For each technology, an economic analysis was also completed where appropriate. In addition, a review of the qualitative literature on patient, caregiver, and provider perspectives on living and dying with COPD was conducted, as were reviews of the qualitative literature on each of the technologies included in these analyses.
The Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Mega-Analysis series is made up of the following reports, which can be publicly accessed at the MAS website at: http://www.hqontario.ca/en/mas/mas_ohtas_mn.html.
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) Evidentiary Framework
Influenza and Pneumococcal Vaccinations for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Smoking Cessation for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Community-Based Multidisciplinary Care for Patients With Stable Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Pulmonary Rehabilitation for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Long-term Oxygen Therapy for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Noninvasive Positive Pressure Ventilation for Acute Respiratory Failure Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Noninvasive Positive Pressure Ventilation for Chronic Respiratory Failure Patients With Stable Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Hospital-at-Home Programs for Patients With Acute Exacerbations of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Home Telehealth for Patients with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Cost-Effectiveness of Interventions for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Using an Ontario Policy Model
Experiences of Living and Dying With COPD: A Systematic Review and Synthesis of the Qualitative Empirical Literature
For more information on the qualitative review, please contact Mita Giacomini at: http://fhs.mcmaster.ca/ceb/faculty_member_giacomini.htm.
For more information on the economic analysis, please visit the PATH website: http://www.path-hta.ca/About-Us/Contact-Us.aspx.
The Toronto Health Economics and Technology Assessment (THETA) collaborative has produced an associated report on patient preference for mechanical ventilation. For more information, please visit the THETA website: http://theta.utoronto.ca/static/contact.
Objective
The objective of this analysis was to compare hospital-at-home care with inpatient hospital care for patients with acute exacerbations of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) who present to the emergency department (ED).
Clinical Need: Condition and Target Population
Acute Exacerbations of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is a disease state characterized by airflow limitation that is not fully reversible. This airflow limitation is usually both progressive and associated with an abnormal inflammatory response of the lungs to noxious particles or gases. The natural history of COPD involves periods of acute-onset worsening of symptoms, particularly increased breathlessness, cough, and/or sputum, that go beyond normal day-to-day variations; these are known as acute exacerbations.
Two-thirds of COPD exacerbations are caused by an infection of the tracheobronchial tree or by air pollution; the cause in the remaining cases is unknown. On average, patients with moderate to severe COPD experience 2 or 3 exacerbations each year.
Exacerbations have an important impact on patients and on the health care system. For the patient, exacerbations result in decreased quality of life, potentially permanent losses of lung function, and an increased risk of mortality. For the health care system, exacerbations of COPD are a leading cause of ED visits and hospitalizations, particularly in winter.
Technology
Hospital-at-home programs offer an alternative for patients who present to the ED with an exacerbation of COPD and require hospital admission for their treatment. Hospital-at-home programs provide patients with visits in their home by medical professionals (typically specialist nurses) who monitor the patients, alter patients’ treatment plans if needed, and in some programs, provide additional care such as pulmonary rehabilitation, patient and caregiver education, and smoking cessation counselling.
There are 2 types of hospital-at-home programs: admission avoidance and early discharge hospital-at-home. In the former, admission avoidance hospital-at-home, after patients are assessed in the ED, they are prescribed the necessary medications and additional care needed (e.g., oxygen therapy) and then sent home where they receive regular visits from a medical professional. In early discharge hospital-at-home, after being assessed in the ED, patients are admitted to the hospital where they receive the initial phase of their treatment. These patients are discharged into a hospital-at-home program before the exacerbation has resolved. In both cases, once the exacerbation has resolved, the patient is discharged from the hospital-at-home program and no longer receives visits in his/her home.
In the models that exist to date, hospital-at-home programs differ from other home care programs because they deal with higher acuity patients who require higher acuity care, and because hospitals retain the medical and legal responsibility for patients. Furthermore, patients requiring home care services may require such services for long periods of time or indefinitely, whereas patients in hospital-at-home programs require and receive the services for a short period of time only.
Hospital-at-home care is not appropriate for all patients with acute exacerbations of COPD. Ineligible patients include: those with mild exacerbations that can be managed without admission to hospital; those who require admission to hospital; and those who cannot be safely treated in a hospital-at-home program either for medical reasons and/or because of a lack of, or poor, social support at home.
The proposed possible benefits of hospital-at-home for treatment of exacerbations of COPD include: decreased utilization of health care resources by avoiding hospital admission and/or reducing length of stay in hospital; decreased costs; increased health-related quality of life for patients and caregivers when treated at home; and reduced risk of hospital-acquired infections in this susceptible patient population.
Ontario Context
No hospital-at-home programs for the treatment of acute exacerbations of COPD were identified in Ontario. Patients requiring acute care for their exacerbations are treated in hospitals.
Research Question
What is the effectiveness, cost-effectiveness, and safety of hospital-at-home care compared with inpatient hospital care of acute exacerbations of COPD?
Research Methods
Literature Search
Search Strategy
A literature search was performed on August 5, 2010, using OVID MEDLINE, OVID MEDLINE In-Process and Other Non-Indexed Citations, OVID EMBASE, EBSCO Cumulative Index to Nursing & Allied Health Literature (CINAHL), the Wiley Cochrane Library, and the Centre for Reviews and Dissemination database for studies published from January 1, 1990, to August 5, 2010. Abstracts were reviewed by a single reviewer and, for those studies meeting the eligibility criteria, full-text articles were obtained. Reference lists and health technology assessment websites were also examined for any additional relevant studies not identified through the systematic search.
Inclusion Criteria
English language full-text reports;
health technology assessments, systematic reviews, meta-analyses, and randomized controlled trials (RCTs);
studies performed exclusively in patients with a diagnosis of COPD or studies including patients with COPD as well as patients with other conditions, if results are reported for COPD patients separately;
studies performed in patients with acute exacerbations of COPD who present to the ED;
studies published between January 1, 1990, and August 5, 2010;
studies comparing hospital-at-home and inpatient hospital care for patients with acute exacerbations of COPD;
studies that include at least 1 of the outcomes of interest (listed below).
Cochrane Collaboration reviews have defined hospital-at-home programs as those that provide patients with active treatment for their acute exacerbation in their home by medical professionals for a limited period of time (in this case, until the resolution of the exacerbation). If a hospital-at-home program had not been available, these patients would have been admitted to hospital for their treatment.
Exclusion Criteria
< 18 years of age
animal studies
duplicate publications
grey literature
Outcomes of Interest
Patient/clinical outcomes
mortality
lung function (forced expiratory volume in 1 second)
health-related quality of life
patient or caregiver preference
patient or caregiver satisfaction with care
complications
Health system outcomes
hospital readmissions
length of stay in hospital and hospital-at-home
ED visits
transfer to long-term care
days to readmission
eligibility for hospital-at-home
Statistical Methods
When possible, results were pooled using Review Manager 5 Version 5.1; otherwise, results were summarized descriptively. Data from RCTs were analyzed using intention-to-treat protocols. In addition, a sensitivity analysis was done assigning all missing data/withdrawals to the event. P values less than 0.05 were considered significant. A priori subgroup analyses were planned for the acuity of hospital-at-home program, type of hospital-at-home program (early discharge or admission avoidance), and severity of the patients’ COPD. Additional subgroup analyses were conducted as needed based on the identified literature. Post hoc sample size calculations were performed using STATA 10.1.
Quality of Evidence
The quality of each included study was assessed, taking into consideration allocation concealment, randomization, blinding, power/sample size, withdrawals/dropouts, and intention-to-treat analyses.
The quality of the body of evidence was assessed as high, moderate, low, or very low according to the GRADE Working Group criteria. The following definitions of quality were used in grading the quality of the evidence:
Summary of Findings
Fourteen studies met the inclusion criteria and were included in this review: 1 health technology assessment, 5 systematic reviews, and 7 RCTs.
The following conclusions are based on low to very low quality of evidence. The reviewed evidence was based on RCTs that were inadequately powered to observe differences between hospital-at-home and inpatient hospital care for most outcomes, so there is a strong possibility of type II error. Given the low to very low quality of evidence, these conclusions must be considered with caution.
Approximately 21% to 37% of patients with acute exacerbations of COPD who present to the ED may be eligible for hospital-at-home care.
Of the patients who are eligible for care, some may refuse to participate in hospital-at-home care.
Eligibility for hospital-at-home care may be increased depending on the design of the hospital-at-home program, such as the size of the geographical service area for hospital-at-home and the hours of operation for patient assessment and entry into hospital-at-home.
Hospital-at-home care for acute exacerbations of COPD was associated with a nonsignificant reduction in the risk of mortality and hospital readmissions compared with inpatient hospital care during 2- to 6-month follow-up.
Limited, very low quality evidence suggests that hospital readmissions are delayed in patients who received hospital-at-home care compared with those who received inpatient hospital care (mean additional days before readmission comparing hospital-at-home to inpatient hospital care ranged from 4 to 38 days).
There is insufficient evidence to determine whether hospital-at-home care, compared with inpatient hospital care, is associated with improved lung function.
The majority of studies did not find significant differences between hospital-at-home and inpatient hospital care for a variety of health-related quality of life measures at follow-up. However, follow-up may have been too late to observe an impact of hospital-at-home care on quality of life.
A conclusion about the impact of hospital-at-home care on length of stay for the initial exacerbation (defined as days in hospital or days in hospital plus hospital-at-home care for inpatient hospital and hospital-at-home, respectively) could not be determined because of limited and inconsistent evidence.
Patient and caregiver satisfaction with care is high for both hospital-at-home and inpatient hospital care.
PMCID: PMC3384361  PMID: 23074420
11.  Interdisciplinary multiinstitutional alliances in support of educational programs for health sciences librarians. 
This project responds to the need to identify the knowledge, skills, and expertise required by health sciences librarians in the future and to devise mechanisms for providing this requisite training. The approach involves interdisciplinary multiinstitutional alliances with collaborators drawn from two graduate schools of library and information science (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Indiana University) and two medical schools (University of Illinois at Chicago and Washington University). The project encompasses six specific aims: (1) investigate the evolving role of the health sciences librarian; (2) analyze existing programs of study in library and information science at all levels at Illinois and Indiana; (3) develop opportunities for practicums, internships, and residencies; (4) explore the possibilities of computing and communication technologies to enhance instruction; (5) identify mechanisms to encourage faculty and graduate students to participate in medical informatics research projects; and (6) create recruitment strategies to achieve better representation of currently underrepresented groups. The project can serve as a model for other institutions interested in regional collaboration to enhance graduate education for health sciences librarianship.
PMCID: PMC226197  PMID: 8913560
12.  Noninvasive Positive Pressure Ventilation for Chronic Respiratory Failure Patients With Stable Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) 
Executive Summary
In July 2010, the Medical Advisory Secretariat (MAS) began work on a Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) evidentiary framework, an evidence-based review of the literature surrounding treatment strategies for patients with COPD. This project emerged from a request by the Health System Strategy Division of the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care that MAS provide them with an evidentiary platform on the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of COPD interventions.
After an initial review of health technology assessments and systematic reviews of COPD literature, and consultation with experts, MAS identified the following topics for analysis: vaccinations (influenza and pneumococcal), smoking cessation, multidisciplinary care, pulmonary rehabilitation, long-term oxygen therapy, noninvasive positive pressure ventilation for acute and chronic respiratory failure, hospital-at-home for acute exacerbations of COPD, and telehealth (including telemonitoring and telephone support). Evidence-based analyses were prepared for each of these topics. For each technology, an economic analysis was also completed where appropriate. In addition, a review of the qualitative literature on patient, caregiver, and provider perspectives on living and dying with COPD was conducted, as were reviews of the qualitative literature on each of the technologies included in these analyses.
The Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Mega-Analysis series is made up of the following reports, which can be publicly accessed at the MAS website at: http://www.hqontario.ca/en/mas/mas_ohtas_mn.html.
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) Evidentiary Framework
Influenza and Pneumococcal Vaccinations for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Smoking Cessation for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Community-Based Multidisciplinary Care for Patients With Stable Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Pulmonary Rehabilitation for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Long-term Oxygen Therapy for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Noninvasive Positive Pressure Ventilation for Acute Respiratory Failure Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Noninvasive Positive Pressure Ventilation for Chronic Respiratory Failure Patients With Stable Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Hospital-at-Home Programs for Patients With Acute Exacerbations of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Home Telehealth for Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): An Evidence-Based Analysis
Cost-Effectiveness of Interventions for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Using an Ontario Policy Model
Experiences of Living and Dying With COPD: A Systematic Review and Synthesis of the Qualitative Empirical Literature
For more information on the qualitative review, please contact Mita Giacomini at: http://fhs.mcmaster.ca/ceb/faculty_member_giacomini.htm.
For more information on the economic analysis, please visit the PATH website: http://www.path-hta.ca/About-Us/Contact-Us.aspx.
The Toronto Health Economics and Technology Assessment (THETA) collaborative has produced an associated report on patient preference for mechanical ventilation. For more information, please visit the THETA website: http://theta.utoronto.ca/static/contact.
Objective
The objective of this health technology assessment was to determine the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of noninvasive ventilation for stable chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Clinical Need: Condition and Target Population
Noninvasive ventilation is used for COPD patients with chronic respiratory failure. Chronic respiratory failure in COPD patients may be due to the inability of the pulmonary system to coordinate ventilation, leading to adverse arterial levels of oxygen and carbon dioxide. Noninvasive ventilation in stable COPD patients has the potential to improve quality of life, prolong survival, and improve gas exchange and sleep quality in patients who are symptomatic after optimal therapy, have hypercapnia or nocturnal hypoventilation and mild hypercapnia, and are frequently hospitalized.
Technology
Noninvasive positive pressure ventilation (NPPV) is any form of positive ventilatory support without the use of an endotracheal tube. For stable COPD, the standard of care when using noninvasive ventilation is bilevel positive airway pressure (BiPAP). Bilevel positive airway pressure involves both inspiratory and expiratory pressure, high during inspiration and lower during expiration. It acts as a pressure support to accentuate a patient’s inspiratory efforts. The gradient between pressures maintains alveolar ventilation and helps to reduce carbon dioxide levels. Outpatients typically use BiPAP at night. Additional advantages of using BiPAP include resting of respiratory muscles, decreased work of breathing, and control of obstructive hypopnea.
Research Question
What is the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of noninvasive ventilation, compared with no ventilation while receiving usual care, for stable COPD patients?
Research Methods
Literature Search
Search Strategy
A literature search was performed on December 3, 2010, using OVID MEDLINE, OVID MEDLINE In-Process and Other Non-Indexed Citations, OVID EMBASE, EBSCO Cumulative Index to Nursing & Allied Health Literature (CINAHL), the Wiley Cochrane Library, and the Centre for Reviews and Dissemination database for studies published from January 1, 2004 to December 3, 2010. Abstracts were reviewed by a single reviewer and, for those studies meeting the eligibility criteria, full-text articles were obtained. Reference lists were also examined for any additional relevant studies not identified through the search. When the reviewer was unsure of the eligibility of articles, a second clinical epidemiologist and then a group of epidemiologists reviewed these until consensus was reached.
Inclusion Criteria
full-text English language articles,
studies published between January 1, 2004 and December 3, 2010,
journal articles that report on the effectiveness or cost-effectiveness of noninvasive ventilation,
clearly described study design and methods, and
health technology assessments, systematic reviews, meta-analyses, randomized controlled trials (RCTs).
Exclusion Criteria
non-English papers
animal or in vitro studies
case reports, case series, or case-case studies
cross-over RCTs
studies on noninvasive negative pressure ventilation (e.g., iron lung)
studies that combine ventilation therapy with other regimens (e.g., daytime NPPV plus exercise or pulmonary rehabilitation)
studies on heliox with NPPV
studies on pulmonary rehabilitation with NPPV
Outcomes of Interest
mortality/survival
hospitalizations/readmissions
length of stay in hospital
forced expiratory volume
arterial partial pressure of oxygen
arterial partial pressure of carbon dioxide
dyspnea
exercise tolerance
health-related quality of life
Note: arterial pressure of oxygen and carbon dioxide are surrogate outcomes.
Statistical Methods
A meta-analysis and an analysis of individual studies were performed using Review Manager Version 5. For continuous data, a mean difference was calculated, and for dichotomous data, a relative risk ratio was calculated for RCTs. For continuous variables with mean baseline and mean follow-up data, a change value was calculated as the difference between the 2 mean values.
Quality of Evidence
The quality of each included study was assessed taking into consideration allocation concealment, randomization, blinding, power/sample size, withdrawals/dropouts, and intention-to-treat analyses.
The quality of the body of evidence was assessed as high, moderate, low, or very low according to the GRADE Working Group criteria. The following definitions of quality were used in grading the quality of the evidence:
Summary of Findings
Conclusions
The following conclusions refer to stable, severe COPD patients receiving usual care.
Short-Term Studies
Based on low quality of evidence, there is a beneficial effect of NPPV compared with no ventilation on oxygen gas exchange, carbon dioxide gas exchange, and exercise tolerance measured using the 6 Minute Walking Test.
Based on very low quality of evidence, there is no effect of NPPV therapy on lung function measured as forced expiratory volume in 1 second (Type II error not excluded).
Long-Term Studies
Based on moderate quality of evidence, there is no effect of NPPV therapy for the outcomes of mortality, lung function measured as forced expiratory volume in 1 second, and exercise tolerance measured using the 6 Minute Walking Test.
Based on low quality of evidence, there is no effect of NPPV therapy for the outcomes of oxygen gas exchange and carbon dioxide gas exchange (Type II error not excluded).
Qualitative Assessment
Based on low quality of evidence, there is a beneficial effect of NPPV compared with no ventilation for dyspnea based on reduced Borg score or Medical Research Council dyspnea score.
Based on moderate quality of evidence, there is no effect of NPPV therapy for hospitalizations.
Health-related quality of life could not be evaluated.
PMCID: PMC3384378  PMID: 23074437
13.  Current status of information literacy instruction practices in medical libraries of Pakistan 
Objectives:
The research explored the current practices of information literacy (IL) instruction in medical libraries of Pakistan.
Methods:
A semi-structured questionnaire was mailed to the head librarians of all 114 academic medical libraries in Pakistan. It investigated the types of IL instruction provided, topics covered, methods of delivery and assessment, level of integration in the curriculum, and level of collaboration with teaching staff.
Results:
The study revealed that 74% of the respondents had offered some types of IL instruction in their institutions during the previous year, ranging from library orientation to research-level skills. IL instruction is typically only offered to new students or first-time library users or on demand. A majority of the respondents developed IL instruction programs without faculty involvement. Librarians were primarily responsible for offering IL instruction in medical institutions. Face-to-face instruction in computer labs or lecture halls and individual instruction at reference desks were identified as the most common IL instruction delivery methods. The data indicated that oral feedback, written feedback, and searching in a computer lab were the most popular assessment methods that medical librarians used.
Conclusion:
IL instruction activities in medical libraries of Pakistan are in their infancy. Medical librarians also lack systematic approaches to IL instruction.
Implications:
Medical librarians need to develop educational partnerships with faculty for integrating IL instruction into the mainstream curriculum.
doi:10.3163/1536-5050.102.4.009
PMCID: PMC4188055  PMID: 25349546
14.  From both sides now: librarians' experiences at the Rocky Mountain Evidence-Based Health Care Workshop 
The Colorado Health Outcomes (COHO) Department of the School of Medicine at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center (UCHSC) coordinates the Rocky Mountain Evidence-Based Health Care (EBHC) Workshop, which has been held annually since 1999. The goals of the workshop include helping participants—physicians, pharmacists, health care policy makers, journalists and librarians—learn and apply skills for critically appraising medical research literature and for effective use of evidence-based information resources. Participants are encouraged to share ideas and to plan local services and instruction for those working in clinical settings. Each year, librarians from UCHSC Denison Memorial Library participate as faculty by teaching searching skills (PubMed, Cochrane Library, ACP Journal Club, etc.), providing support to small groups, and staffing two computer labs. In 2002, Denison Library received a National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NN/LM) MidContinental Region Impact Award to fund the attendance of three health sciences librarians from the MidContinental Region, an academic education librarian, a clinical medical librarian, and a department librarian. In this paper, the participating librarians share the lessons they learned about how health care practitioners approach evidence-based practice. The participating librarians also share how they incorporated these lessons into their support of evidence-based practice related to teaching about evidence-based resources, assisting health care practitioners with developing answerable questions, enhancing the clinician-librarian partnership, and assisting practitioners in selecting evidence-based resources for quick answers to clinical questions.
PMCID: PMC314105  PMID: 14762465
15.  The librarian's roles in the systematic review process: a case study* 
Question/Setting: Although the systematic review has become a research standard, little information addresses the actions of the librarian on a systematic review team.
Method: This article is an observational case study that chronicles a librarian's required involvement, skills, and responsibilities in each stage of a real-life systematic review.
Main Results: Examining the review process reveals that the librarian's multiple roles as an expert searcher, organizer, and analyzer form an integral part of the Cochrane Collaboration's criteria for conducting systematic reviews. Moreover, the responsibilities of the expert searcher directly reflect the key skills and knowledge depicted in the “Definition of Expert Searching” section of the Medical Library Association's policy statement, “Role of Expert Searching in Health Sciences Libraries.”
Conclusion: Although the librarian's multiple roles are important in all forms of medical research, they are crucial in a systematic review. As an expert searcher, the librarian must interact with the investigators to develop the terms required for a comprehensive search strategy in multiple appropriate sources. As an organizer and analyzer, the librarian must effectively manage the articles and document the search, retrieval, and archival processes.
PMCID: PMC545126  PMID: 15685279
16.  Cardiac Magnetic Resonance Imaging for the Diagnosis of Coronary Artery Disease 
Executive Summary
In July 2009, the Medical Advisory Secretariat (MAS) began work on Non-Invasive Cardiac Imaging Technologies for the Diagnosis of Coronary Artery Disease (CAD), an evidence-based review of the literature surrounding different cardiac imaging modalities to ensure that appropriate technologies are accessed by patients suspected of having CAD. This project came about when the Health Services Branch at the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care asked MAS to provide an evidentiary platform on effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of non-invasive cardiac imaging modalities.
After an initial review of the strategy and consultation with experts, MAS identified five key non-invasive cardiac imaging technologies for the diagnosis of CAD. Evidence-based analyses have been prepared for each of these five imaging modalities: cardiac magnetic resonance imaging, single photon emission computed tomography, 64-slice computed tomographic angiography, stress echocardiography, and stress echocardiography with contrast. For each technology, an economic analysis was also completed (where appropriate). A summary decision analytic model was then developed to encapsulate the data from each of these reports (available on the OHTAC and MAS website).
The Non-Invasive Cardiac Imaging Technologies for the Diagnosis of Coronary Artery Disease series is made up of the following reports, which can be publicly accessed at the MAS website at: www.health.gov.on.ca/mas or at www.health.gov.on.ca/english/providers/program/mas/mas_about.html
Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography for the Diagnosis of Coronary Artery Disease: An Evidence-Based Analysis
Stress Echocardiography for the Diagnosis of Coronary Artery Disease: An Evidence-Based Analysis
Stress Echocardiography with Contrast for the Diagnosis of Coronary Artery Disease: An Evidence-Based Analysis
64-Slice Computed Tomographic Angiography for the Diagnosis of Coronary Artery Disease: An Evidence-Based Analysis
Cardiac Magnetic Resonance Imaging for the Diagnosis of Coronary Artery Disease: An Evidence-Based Analysis
Pease note that two related evidence-based analyses of non-invasive cardiac imaging technologies for the assessment of myocardial viability are also available on the MAS website:
Positron Emission Tomography for the Assessment of Myocardial Viability: An Evidence-Based Analysis
Magnetic Resonance Imaging for the Assessment of Myocardial Viability: an Evidence-Based Analysis
The Toronto Health Economics and Technology Assessment Collaborative has also produced an associated economic report entitled:
The Relative Cost-effectiveness of Five Non-invasive Cardiac Imaging Technologies for Diagnosing Coronary Artery Disease in Ontario [Internet]. Available from: http://theta.utoronto.ca/reports/?id=7
Objective
The objective of this analysis was to determine the diagnostic accuracy of cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) for the diagnosis of patients with known/suspected coronary artery disease (CAD) compared to coronary angiography.
Cardiac MRI
Stress cardiac MRI is a non-invasive, x-ray free imaging technique that takes approximately 30 to 45 minutes to complete and can be performed using to two different methods, a) perfusion imaging following a first pass of an intravenous bolus of gadolinium contrast, or b) wall motion imaging. Stress is induced pharmacologically with either dobutamine, dipyridamole, or adenosine, as physical exercise is difficult to perform within the magnet bore and often induces motion artifacts. Alternatives to stress cardiac perfusion MRI include stress single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) and stress echocardiography (ECHO). The advantage of cardiac MRI is that it does not pose the radiation burden associated with SPECT. During the same sitting, cardiac MRI can also assess left and right ventricular dimensions, viability, and cardiac mass. It may also mitigate the need for invasive diagnostic coronary angiography in patients with intermediate risk factors for CAD.
Evidence-Based Analysis
Literature Search
A literature search was performed on October 9, 2009 using OVID MEDLINE, MEDLINE In-Process and Other Non-Indexed Citations, EMBASE, the Cumulative Index to Nursing & Allied Health Literature (CINAHL), the Cochrane Library, and the International Agency for Health Technology Assessment (INAHTA) for studies published from January 1, 2005 to October 9, 2008. Abstracts were reviewed by a single reviewer and, for those studies meeting the eligibility criteria, full-text articles were obtained. Reference lists were also examined for any relevant studies not identified through the search. Articles with unknown eligibility were reviewed with a second clinical epidemiologist and then a group of epidemiologists until consensus was established. The quality of evidence was assessed as high, moderate, low or very low according to GRADE methodology.
Given the large amount of clinical heterogeneity of the articles meeting the inclusion criteria, as well as suggestions from an Expert Advisory Panel Meeting held on October 5, 2009, the inclusion criteria were revised to examine the effectiveness of cardiac MRI for the detection of CAD.
Heath technology assessments, systematic reviews, randomized controlled trials, observational studies
≥20 adult patients enrolled.
Published 2004-2009
Licensed by Health Canada
For diagnosis of CAD:
Reference standard is coronary angiography
Significant CAD defined as ≥ 50% coronary stenosis
Patients with suspected or known CAD
Reported results by patient, not segment
Non-English studies
Grey literature
Planar imaging
MUGA
Patients with recent MI (i.e., within 1 month)
Patients with non-ischemic heart disease
Studies done exclusively in special populations (e.g., women, diabetics)
Outcomes of Interest
Sensitivity and specificity
Area under the curve (AUC)
Diagnostic odds ratio (DOR)
Summary of Findings
Stress cardiac MRI using perfusion analysis yielded a pooled sensitivity of 0.91 (95% CI: 0.89 to 0.92) and specificity of 0.79 (95% CI: 0.76 to 0.82) for the detection of CAD.
Stress cardiac MRI using wall motion analysis yielded a pooled sensitivity of 0.81 (95% CI: 0.77 to 0.84) and specificity of 0.85 (95% CI: 0.81 to 0.89) for the detection of CAD.
Based on DORs, there was no significant difference between pooled stress cardiac MRI using perfusion analysis and pooled stress cardiac MRI using wall motion analysis (P=0.26) for the detection of CAD.
Pooled subgroup analysis of stress cardiac MRI using perfusion analysis showed no significant difference in the DORs between 1.5T and 3T MRI (P=0.72) for the detection of CAD.
One study (N=60) was identified that examined stress cardiac MRI using wall motion analysis with a 3T MRI. The sensitivity and specificity of 3T MRI were 0.64 (95% CI: 0.44 to 0.81) and 1.00 (95% CI: 0.89 to 1.00), respectively, for the detection of CAD.
The effectiveness of stress cardiac MRI for the detection of CAD in unstable patients with acute coronary syndrome was reported in only one study (N=35). Using perfusion analysis, the sensitivity and specificity were 0.72 (95% CI: 0.53 to 0.87) and 1.00 (95% CI: 0.54 to 1.00), respectively, for the detection of CAD.
Ontario Health System Impact Analysis
According to an expert consultant, in Ontario:
Stress first pass perfusion is currently performed in small numbers in London (London Health Sciences Centre) and Toronto (University Health Network at the Toronto General Hospital site and Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre).
Stress wall motion is only performed as part of research protocols and not very often.
Cardiac MRI machines use 1.5T almost exclusively, with 3T used in research for first pass perfusion.
On November 25 2009, the Cardiac Imaging Expert Advisory Panel met and made the following comments about stress cardiac MRI for perfusion analysis:
Accessibility to cardiac MRI is limited and generally used to assess structural abnormalities. Most MRIs in Ontario are already in 24–hour, constant use and it would thus be difficult to add cardiac MRI for CAD diagnosis as an additional indication.
The performance of cardiac MRI for the diagnosis of CAD can be technically challenging.
GRADE Quality of Evidence for Cardiac MRI in the Diagnosis of CAD
The quality of the body of evidence was assessed according to the GRADE Working Group criteria for diagnostic tests. For perfusion analysis, the overall quality was determined to be low and for wall motion analysis the overall quality was very low.
PMCID: PMC3377522  PMID: 23074389
17.  Preparing Librarians to Meet the Challenges of Today's Health Care Environment 
Objective: Refine the understanding of the desirable skills for health sciences librarians as a basis for developing a training program model that reflects the fundamental changes in health care delivery and information technology.
Design: A four-step needs assessment process: focus groups developed lists of desirable skills; the research team organized candidate skills into a taxonomy; a survey of a random sample of librarians and library users assessed perception of importance of individual skills; and the research team framed, as a unifying hypothesis, a training model.
Survey methods: The survey was distributed to random samples of 150 librarians, stratified by type of library, and 150 library users, stratified by type of use. A non-randomized sample was obtained by mounting the survey on a World Wide Web server. The survey instrument included 96 distinct skills organized into 13 categories. Respondents rated the importance of each skill on a Likert scale and provided a separate ranking by identifying the ten most important skills for the profession.
Results: Among the participants, 51% of librarians and 36% of library users responded to the survey. All categories of skills were rated above the midpoint of priority on the Likert scale. All groups rated personality characteristics and skills as most important, with an understanding of the health sciences, education, and research being rated comparably to technical skills.
Conclusions: Health sciences librarians need a new educational model that provides them with broad-based tools to discover new roles and new resources for acquiring individual skills as the need arises. A unifying training model would involve trainees in developing their learning plan in a way that promotes proactive inquiry and self-directed learning, and it would rotate the trainees through projects to provide skills and an understanding of end-user work processes.
PMCID: PMC61199  PMID: 8988475
18.  Assessing clinical researchers' information needs to create responsive portals and tools: My Research Assistant (MyRA) at the University of Utah: a case study* 
Question:
How can health sciences librarians and biomedical informaticians offer relevant support to Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) personnel?
Setting:
The Spencer S. Eccles Health Sciences Library and the associate vice president for information technology for the health sciences office at the University of Utah conducted a needs assessment.
Methods:
Faculty and staff from these two units, with the services of a consultant and other CTSA partners, employed a survey, focus groups, interviews, and committee discussions. An information portal was created to meet identified needs.
Results:
A directive white paper was created. The process employed to plan a virtual and physical collaborative, collegial space for clinical researchers at the university and its three inter-institutional CTSA partners is described.
Conclusion:
The university's model can assist other librarians and informaticians with how to become part of a CTSA-focused infrastructure for clinical and translational research and serve researchers in general.
doi:10.3163/1536-5050.101.1.002
PMCID: PMC3543136  PMID: 23405041
19.  Google Wave: Have CTSA-Minded Institutions Caught It? 
Background
Google Wave was touted as the next big communication tool—combining e-mail, social networking, and chat within a single “wave”—with the potential to create a new world for collaboration. Information professionals who are knowledgeable of this tool and its capabilities could become uniquely situated to use it, evaluate it, and teach it. This seemed especially true for those working within Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA)-minded institutions, given the promise of interdisciplinary collaboration between investigators and the potential for creating new authorship models. This case study on Google Wave users who are affiliated with CTSA-minded institutions, was designed for and presented at the Evidence-Based Scholarly Communication Conference held by the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Library and Information Center. It provides an early evidence based evaluation of Google Wave's potential.
Methods
Two “waves” were created. The first consisted of five survey questions designed to collect demographic data on the respondents' roles, a general impression of Wave, the specific tools within Wave that might be useful, and potential collaborators with whom the respondents might use Wave. The second wave was a private, guided discussion on Wave's collaboration potential. Individuals from CTSA-minded institutions were invited to participate with messages on Twitter, forums, blogs, and electronic mail lists, although there were difficulties reaching out to these institutions as a group.
Results
By the conclusion of the study, only a small number of people (n=11, with a viable n=9) had responded to the survey. Given this small result set, it made sense to group the responses by the respondents' roles (CTSA staff and researchers, support staff, medical librarian, or general public) and to treat them as individual cases. Most of the respondents were librarians and support staff who felt that Wave might have potential for collaboration; there were no CTSA researcher respondents. For the second part of the study, the discussion wave, only one participant explicitly expressed interest in joining. All were invited to join, but there was no participation in the discussion wave at the conclusion of the study.
Conclusions
The results of this study implied that Google Wave was not on the forefront of CTSA-minded institutions' communication strategies. However, it was being used, and it did demonstrate new collaboration and authorship capabilities. Being generally aware of these capabilities may be useful to information professionals who seek to be current and informed regarding developing technology and to those interested in scholarly communication practices. In addition, the difficulties encountered during this case study in attempting to reach out to CTSA-minded institutions raised the question of how members currently communicate with each other as institutions and as individuals. There was a lesson learned in the usefulness of doing case-study research to evaluate new technologies; the cost in terms of time was relatively low, and knowledge about the technology itself was gained while establishing a base level of evidence to potentially build on in the future.
PMCID: PMC3068201  PMID: 21461135
20.  The role of the academic medical center library in training public librarians*† 
Purpose: This project enhanced access to and awareness of health information resources on the part of public libraries in western Pennsylvania.
Setting/Participants/Resources: The Health Sciences Library System (HSLS), University of Pittsburgh, conducted a needs assessment and offered a series of workshops to 298 public librarians.
Brief Description: The National Library of Medicine–funded project “Access to Electronic Health Information” at the HSLS, University of Pittsburgh, provided Internet health information training to public libraries and librarians in sixteen counties in western Pennsylvania. Through this project, this academic medical center library identified the challenges for public librarians in providing health-related reference service, developed a training program to address those challenges, and evaluated the impact of this training on public librarians' ability to provide health information.
Results/Outcome: The HSLS experience indicates academic medical center libraries can have a positive impact on their communities by providing health information instruction to public librarians. The success of this project—demonstrated by the number of participants, positive course evaluations, increased comfort level with health-related reference questions, and increased use of MEDLINEplus and other quality information resources—has been a catalyst for continuation of this programming, not only for public librarians but also for the public in general.
Evaluation Method: A training needs assessment, course evaluation, and impact training survey were used in developing the curriculum and evaluating the impact of this training on public librarians' professional activities.
PMCID: PMC164399  PMID: 12883558
21.  Standards for hospital libraries 2002 
The Medical Library Association's “Standards for Hospital Libraries 2002” have been developed as a guide for hospital administrators, librarians, and accrediting bodies to ensure that hospitals have the resources and services to effectively meet their needs for knowledge-based information. Specific requirements for knowledge-based information include that the library be a separate department with its own budget. Knowledge-based information in the library should be directed by a qualified librarian who functions as a department head and is a member of the Academy of Health Information Professionals. The standards define the role of the medical librarian and the links between knowledge-based information and other functions such as patient care, patient education, performance improvement, and education. In addition, the standards address the development and implementation of the knowledge-based information needs assessment and plans, the promotion and publicity of the knowledge-based information services, and the physical space and staffing requirements. The role, qualifications, and functions of a hospital library consultant are outlined. The health sciences library is positioned to play a key role in the hospital. The increasing use of the Internet and new information technologies by medical, nursing, and allied health staffs; patients; and the community require new strategies, strategic planning, allocation of adequate resources, and selection and evaluation of appropriate information resources and technologies. The Hospital Library Standards Committee has developed this document as a guideline to be used in facing these challenges.
Editor's Note: The “Standards for Hospital Libraries 2002” were approved by the members of the Hospital Library Section during MLA '02 in Dallas, Texas. They were subsequently approved by Section Council and received final approval from the MLA Board of Directors in June 2002. They succeed the Standards for Hospital Libraries published in 1994 and the Minimum Standards for Health Sciences Libraries in Hospitals from 1983. A Frequently Asked Questions document discussing the development of the new standards can be found on the Hospital Library Section Website at http://www.hls.mlanet.org.
PMCID: PMC128964  PMID: 12398254
22.  Utilization of the medical librarian in a state Medicaid program to provide information services geared to health policy and health disparities 
Objective: The role of two solo medical librarians in supporting Medicaid programs by functioning as information specialists at regional and state levels is examined.
Setting: A solo librarian for the Massachusetts Medicaid (MassHealth) program and a solo librarian for the New England States Consortium Systems Organization (NESCSO) functioned as information specialists in context to support Medicaid policy development and clinical, administrative, and program staff for state Medicaid programs.
Brief Description: The librarian for MassHealth initially focused on acquiring library materials and providing research support on culturally competent health care and outreach, as part of the United States Department of Health and Human Services Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services in Health Care Standards. The NESCSO librarian focused on state Medicaid system issues surrounding the implementation of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. The research focus expanded for both the librarians, shaping their roles to more directly support clinical and administrative policy development. Of note, the availability and dissemination of information to policy leaders facilitated efforts to reduce health disparities. In Massachusetts, this led to a state legislative special commission to eliminate health disparities, which released a report in November 2005. On a regional level, the NESCSO librarian provided opportunities for states in New England to share ideas and Medicaid program information. The Centers for Medicaid and Medicare are working with NESCSO to explore the potential for using the NESCSO model for collaboration for other regions of the United States.
Results/Outcomes: With the increased attention on evidence-based health care and reduction of health disparities, medical librarians are called on to support a variety of health care information needs. Nationally, state Medicaid programs are being called on to provide coverage and make complex medical decisions regarding the delivery of benefits. Increasing numbers of beneficiaries and shrinking Medicaid budgets demand effective and proactive decision making to provide quality care and to accomplish the missions of state Medicaid programs. In this environment, the opportunities for information professionals to provide value and knowledge management are increasing.
PMCID: PMC1435841  PMID: 16636710
23.  Library roles in disaster response: an oral history project by the National Library of Medicine*† 
Objectives:
To develop a knowledgebase of stories illustrating the variety of roles that librarians can assume in emergency and disaster planning, preparedness, response, and recovery, the National Library of Medicine conducted an oral history project during the summer of 2007. The history aimed to describe clearly and compellingly the activities—both expected and unusual—that librarians performed during and in the aftermath of the disasters. While various types of libraries were included in interviews, the overall focus of the project was on elucidating roles for medical libraries.
Methods:
Using four broad questions as the basis for telephone and email interviews, the investigators recorded the stories of twenty-three North American librarians who responded to bombings and other acts of terrorism, earthquakes, epidemics, fires, floods, hurricanes, and tornados.
Results:
Through the process of conducting the oral history, an understanding of multiple roles for libraries in disaster response emerged. The roles fit into eight categories: institutional supporters, collection managers, information disseminators, internal planners, community supporters, government partners, educators and trainers, and information community builders.
Conclusions:
Librarians—particularly health sciences librarians—made significant contributions to preparedness and recovery activities surrounding recent disasters. Lessons learned from the oral history project increased understanding of and underscored the value of collaborative relationships between libraries and local, state, and federal disaster management agencies and organizations.
doi:10.3163/1536-5050.96.4.009
PMCID: PMC2568836  PMID: 18974811
24.  Methodological developments in searching for studies for systematic reviews: past, present and future? 
Systematic Reviews  2013;2:78.
The Cochrane Collaboration was established in 1993, following the opening of the UK Cochrane Centre in 1992, at a time when searching for studies for inclusion in systematic reviews was not well-developed. Review authors largely conducted their own searches or depended on medical librarians, who often possessed limited awareness and experience of systematic reviews. Guidance on the conduct and reporting of searches was limited. When work began to identify reports of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) for inclusion in Cochrane Reviews in 1992, there were only approximately 20,000 reports indexed as RCTs in MEDLINE and none indexed as RCTs in Embase. No search filters had been developed with the aim of identifying all RCTs in MEDLINE or other major databases. This presented The Cochrane Collaboration with a considerable challenge in identifying relevant studies.
Over time, the number of studies indexed as RCTs in the major databases has grown considerably and the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL) has become the best single source of published controlled trials, with approximately 700,000 records, including records identified by the Collaboration from Embase and MEDLINE. Search filters for various study types, including systematic reviews and the Cochrane Highly Sensitive Search Strategies for RCTs, have been developed. There have been considerable advances in the evidence base for methodological aspects of information retrieval. The Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions now provides detailed guidance on the conduct and reporting of searches. Initiatives across The Cochrane Collaboration to improve the quality inter alia of information retrieval include: the recently introduced Methodological Expectations for Cochrane Intervention Reviews (MECIR) programme, which stipulates 'mandatory’ and 'highly desirable’ standards for various aspects of review conduct and reporting including searching, the development of Standard Training Materials for Cochrane Reviews and work on peer review of electronic search strategies. Almost all Cochrane Review Groups and some Cochrane Centres and Fields now have a Trials Search Co-ordinator responsible for study identification and medical librarians and other information specialists are increasingly experienced in searching for studies for systematic reviews.
Prospective registration of clinical trials is increasing and searching trials registers is now mandatory for Cochrane Reviews, where relevant. Portals such as the WHO International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (ICTRP) are likely to become increasingly attractive, given concerns about the number of trials which may not be registered and/or published. The importance of access to information from regulatory and reimbursement agencies is likely to increase. Cross-database searching, gateways or portals and improved access to full-text databases will impact on how searches are conducted and reported, as will services such as Google Scholar, Scopus and Web of Science. Technologies such as textual analysis, semantic analysis, text mining and data linkage will have a major impact on the search process but efficient and effective updating of reviews may remain a challenge.
In twenty years’ time, we envisage that the impact of universal social networking, as well as national and international legislation, will mean that all trials involving humans will be registered at inception and detailed trial results will be routinely available to all. Challenges will remain, however, to ensure the discoverability of relevant information in diverse and often complex sources and the availability of metadata to provide the most efficient access to information. We envisage an ongoing role for information professionals as experts in identifying new resources, researching efficient ways to link or mine them for relevant data and managing their content for the efficient production of systematic reviews.
doi:10.1186/2046-4053-2-78
PMCID: PMC4015986  PMID: 24066664
Cochrane Collaboration; Information and communication technologies; Information retrieval; Quality; Searching; Standards; Training materials; Trials Search Co-ordinators; Unpublished studies; Updating reviews
25.  Reference librarians' perceptions of the issues they face as academic health information professionals 
Background: Leaders in the profession encourage academic health sciences librarians to assume new roles as part of the growth process for remaining vital professionals. Have librarians embraced these new roles?
Objectives: This research sought to examine from the reference librarians' viewpoints how their roles have changed over the past ten years and what the challenges these changes present as viewed by both the librarians and library directors.
Method: A series of eight focus groups was conducted with reference librarians from private and public academic health sciences libraries. Directors of these libraries were interviewed separately.
Results: Reference librarians' activities have largely confirmed the role changes anticipated by their leaders. They are teaching more, engaging in outreach through liaison initiatives, and designing Web pages, in addition to providing traditional reference duties. Librarians offer insights into unanticipated issues encountered in each of these areas and offer some creative solutions. Directors discuss the issues from their unique perspective.
Conclusion: Librarians have identified areas for focusing efforts in lifelong learning. Adult learning theory, specialized databases and resources needed by researchers, ever-evolving technology, and promotion and evaluation of the library are areas needing attention. Implications for library education and continuing professional development are presented.
PMCID: PMC385304  PMID: 15098052

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