We know you already appreciate the hard work your health sciences librarians do to serve you, but today we want to highlight the awesomeness of all medical librarians everywhere. After all, October is National Medical Librarians Month! Medical librarians fill a variety of roles in many different settings, including academic health sciences centers like UCF COM, special libraries (e.g., cancer centers), hospital libraries, corporate libraries, community college libraries, and more.
Medical librarians are professionals with Masters degrees in Library and Information Science. We have a unique set of skills! Here are some the cool things medical librarians do in their respective institutions:
- “Teaching health professionals how to access and evaluate information;
- Helping patients and consumers find authoritative health information;
- Attending morning rounds with the health care team;
- Bringing the latest diagnostic and treatment information to the patient’s bedside;
- Connecting electronic resources and decision tools into a patient’s electronic medical record;
- Conducting community outreach programs on topics such as health information literacy”
- Creating content for health information websites and blogs;
- Designing and managing digital libraries;
- “Serving on patient safety and quality control committees;
- Contributing to the development of new treatments, products and services as members of university and pharmaceutical research teams”
Source: Medical Library Association
Medical librarians are expected to meet certain competencies as set forth by the Medical Library Association, including:
- Understanding the health sciences, including health care and its related policies, issues, and trends;
- Knowing how to provide information services to meet our users’ needs;
- Managing health information resources;
- Understanding how to use technology to manage all kinds of information;
- Understanding curricular design and instruction and being able to teach others how to access, organize, and use information;
- Understanding scientific research methods; and
- Being able to critically examine the literature from many disciplines.
After reading this, hopefully you noticed that “books” are not always synonymous with “medical librarian.” We do provide access to books (hopefully e-books, as is the case in our 98% digital library!), but medical librarians do so much more. Next time you’re in the library, be sure to say “thank you” to your librarians for helping you find the information you need when you need it – Anywhere, Anytime, on Any Device.