Friday, October 29, 2021

Just in time for Halloween....

 Looking for a spooky read this Halloween weekend?  Check out The Great Amhurst Mystery: A true narrative of the supernatural by Walter Hubbel.  The entire book is available online in NLM's digital collection.  Hubbel observed a series of bizarre, unexplained events in Amherst, Nova Scotia that went on to become one of the best documented cases of poltergeist activity.  Hubbard went as far as to swear an affidavit that his accounts of the events were true.

Thanks to WHSLA member Mini Prasad for sharing Nicole Baker's Circulating Now blog post with us.  If you don't have time to read the entire book, Baker gives an interesting summary of it.

Also from NLM's digital collection!

Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Designing Effective Health Infographics

UIC Library Virtual Symposium: Designing Effective Health Infographics [about 3 hours]

  • Part 1: Role of Infographics in Promoting Health Equity with Dr. Brenikki Floyd, PhD, MPH
  • Part 2: Designing Info Graphics: Less ticks and color, more POV with Professor Robert Zolna, MDES
  • Part 3: Creating Infographics with Everyday Software (like PowerPoint)

I learned about this intriguing program at the 2021 Midwest / MC-MLA Chapter Virtual Conference, where Rose Hanneke, one of the Librarians involved, talked about the program.

  • Note: They are only listing it on YouTube for 6 months due to Zoom and licensing limitations. The clock is ticking , so watch it while you can!  

Lightning Talk Abstract:

Offering Online Training in Infographic Design through an Expert Speaker Event. 
Rosie Hanneke and Tina Griffin, University of Illinois Chicago Library of the Health Sciences. [Program Description] 

BACKGROUND: Infographics can visually communicate complex information in a manner easily understood by the reader. Those working in health professions increasingly seek to communicate health  information to patients and community members through this medium. In April 2021, our library held a virtual symposium, bringing together three expert speakers to convey the basic principles of design and health communication necessary for understanding what makes an infographic effective. 

DESCRIPTION: We received funding for the three expert speakers from the Network of the National Library of Medicine's Expert Speaker Award. The speakers included faculty from our university's Schools of Design and Public Health, and a librarian with expertise in data visualization from outside our university. The talks covered infographics and health equity; design principles; and using common software to create infographics. The event was open to students, faculty, staff, and the public. We publicized the symposium through listservs, the library's regular communication channels, and the network of community organizations established through university researchers. The symposium was recorded for those unable to attend. 

CONCLUSION: 200 people registered, nearly 100 attended, and over 100 viewed the recording. We had an overwhelmingly positive response to this event despite a compressed timeline for publicity and promotion, demonstrating a strong interest in this topic across diverse audiences. The library served as the ideal virtual gathering place for this interdisciplinary event.

Saturday, October 23, 2021

Updates from the NNLM Region 6 (Formerly the GMR)

3 items of interest showed up in the October 2021 Health Highlights Newsletter from the NNLM Region 6.  Click on the link above to see the entire issue and subscribe.


UPDATED: NNLM  Guides & Resources for Hospital/Health Sciences Libraries

The Guides & Resources for Hospital/Health Sciences Libraries was recently edited and updated by NNLM staff. This concise list is intended to empower new and experienced hospital and health sciences librarians with the resources and skills necessary to offer robust biomedical and health information services. Your feedback on this list is always welcome.

Check it out

E Lake

Introducing Erica Lake 

We are excited to announce that Region 6 has welcomed Erica Lake to our team! Erica is joining us as our new Medical and Academic Library Outreach Coordinator. In this role, Erica will engage with our academic and hospital librarians as well as library school programs and students. She will also serve as the region's lead DOCLINE coordinator, and produce the monthly Health Highlights newsletter. Erica will be working remotely for us from Duluth, MN.

Erica is an accomplished health sciences librarian with more than 20 years of experience in the field, including 11 years as a hospital librarian with Intermountain Healthcare in Salt Lake City, UT, eight years as an academic librarian with the Eccles Health Sciences Library at the University of UT, and one and a half years as a Research and Evaluation Specialist with the Essentia Institute of Rural Health in Duluth, MN. She has presented more than 45 papers and posters at national, regional, and state conferences, and has received numerous honors and awards, including being named MLA’s 2018 Consumer Health Librarian of the Year. Her research interests include inter-professional team-based approaches to health care delivery, the integration of  library services into the electronic health record, and the impact of library services on quality, outcomes, and costs in health care processes.

Erica earned her MLS from Indiana University, and is happy to be back in the Midwest. When she’s not in the office, Erica is usually outdoors running, mountain biking, or exploring with family and friends. Join us in welcoming her to NNLM!


DOCLINE Questions?

Send your DOCLINE questions to

Giving Up: Use the Eisenhower Matrix to Prioritize Tasks and Be More Productive


This was another gem I picked up at the Midwest/MC-MLA 2021 Virtual Conference.  One of the Librarians talked about the importance of giving up some of the things we do ...  I know this was a hard lesson to learn in my own medical library, esp. when you're reeling from down-sizing and struggling to figure out how you'll get it all done without sufficient staff.  Enter this nifty little prioritization tool ...

Feeling overwhelmed with too much to do, and no time to accomplish all of it?

The Eisenhower Matrix helps prioritize your time for the tasks that matter most, and justifies giving up the things that don't matter so much.  Read more at Slab ...

It seems that everyone you talk to is working short-staffed these days. Let me be the one to say it: You cannot do the same amount of work 4 people were doing separately.  It's just not possible, so prioritize the work according to what's most important, think about what can be delegated, and think about what you can give up.  

Friday, October 22, 2021

Librarian Contributions to a Manuscript Writing Intensive for Health Researchers: Liz Suelzer's Lightning Talk at the virtual Midwest-MCMLA Conference 2021

WHSLA's own Liz Suelzer presented a lightning talk at The 2021 Virtual Midwest /MCMLA Conference on October 15, 2021 [Posted here with her permission.]

Librarian Contributions to a Manuscript Writing Intensive for Health Researchers.            By Elizabeth Suelzer, Medical College of Wisconsin. [Midwest] [Program Description] 

BACKGROUND: In early 2020, an experienced academic writing coach developed a 10-week Manuscript Writing Intensive to support the dissemination efforts of the health researchers in our consortium of eight local institutions. Participants in the writing intensive included anyone who was affiliated with the Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI) and was currently working on an article manuscript. The objective of this hands-on small group course was for participants to use the weekly two-hour sessions and 4 hours of homework to support each other in completing a publishable manuscript within the span of the course. The instructor contacted me, a medical librarian, for assistance and to explore opportunities for collaboration. 

DESCRIPTION: The instructor met with me for an orientation to the resources and staff expertise available for participants. We then met again to brainstorm segments of the course that I could lead. I developed one hour virtual presentations for the first two sessions that covered ORCID, citation managers, finding the right journal, and literature searching. Each presentation was followed by a discussion period where participants shared their publishing experiences and asked questions. I repeated this for all four cohorts. Overall course feedback highlighted the value of these librarian-led sessions. 

CONCLUSIONS: With the first iteration of the course deemed a success, plans were made to offer the series quarterly and expand the number of cohorts. To accommodate the increased number of sessions, I produced video tutorials of my presentations as foundational information for assigned homework. These videos are posted on YouTube and on our LibGuides and are included in the course materials. Library collaboration on this dissemination initiative accelerated the development of the course, promoted participant learning, and showcased the expertise of librarians.

Where to Publish Your Research LibGuide at MCW Libraries

Resources for Scholarly Writers, MCW Libraries YouTube Playlist   

Librarian Contribution to Manuscript Writing Intensive (ppt slides)

Link to Conference Papers and Posters

Contact Liz Suelzer for more information.

Thursday, October 21, 2021

Trio of Library Initiatives to Integrate the Arts & Humanities into our Health Community: Ebling's

This lightning talk was presented at the virtual 2021 Midwest/MCMLA Joint Annual Meeting on October 15 by fellow Wisconsinites:   [Posted here with their permission.]

A Trio of Library Initiatives to Integrate the Arts & Humanities into our Health Community. 

Christopher Hooper-Lane, MA, AHIP, and Lia Vellardita, MA, Ebling Library, University of Wisconsin-Madison. [Midwest] [First-time Chapter Presenter] [Program Description]

BACKGROUND: There is a growing recognition of the benefits of expanding the arts/humanities in the health sciences. Recognizing this, school leadership tasked our library to develop initiatives to connect the arts and humanities to our patrons. As a result, our library launched three new programs to integrate the arts into our community. 

DESCRIPTION: Our library developed three arts initiatives for our health sciences community:

 (1) a book/film discussion club providing participants at all levels a venue to discuss relevant books and films; 

(2) an onsite recreational reading collection (and corresponding website) offering a browsable collection of popular non-fiction, fiction, poetry, and graphic medicine books with health themes and sub-collections on emergent topics; 

(3) an arts/humanities journal that for our health community to showcase a variety of arts including the written word, visual arts (2D and photos of 3D art), and multimedia audio/video.

CONCLUSION: All three initiatives have been successfully launched. The book/film club has administered 15 online book/film discussions with a total of 220 participants. Sessions are led by a variety of facilitators from our health community. The recreational reading collection now includes 1200 items and is expected to be fully on display and available for circulation summer 2021. A corresponding website is live using book cover images that can be sorted by sub-collections such as well-being, antiracism, etc. Three issues of our arts journal have successfully published 84 works of art from our health sciences community with 2,950 site hits recorded.

Art at Ebling:  Book Club  |  Corpus Callosum  |   Recreational Reading Collection

Link to Conference Papers and Posters

Contact Chris Hooper-Lane or Lia Vellardita for more information.

Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Counter 5 Usage Statistics Playbook for Librarians: Wisconsin Poster at Midwest-MCMLA 2021 Virtual Conference

[Click on the poster to view a larger version.]

This poster was presented at the virtual 2021 Midwest/MCMLA Joint Annual Meeting on October 15. [Posted here by permission.]

Poster Title: Development of a Counter 5 Quarterly Usage Stats Playbook for Librarians

By Michele Matucheski, MLS, AHIP - Medical Librarian - Ascension Wisconsin


Purpose: Describes the development of a Counter 5 Quarterly Stats Playbook for Librarians to standardize and simplify the data collection and reporting process.

Setting/ Participants / Resources: Twenty-two Healthcare Librarians in 20 states reporting selected local library usage statistics.

Brief Description: Under the guidance of The Library Measurements Team, librarians reported selected usage stats in 2020. For 2021, we needed to upgrade to the Counter 5 (C5) industry standard. Therefore, the team determined what to track going forward. After immersing ourselves in C5, we mapped C5 equivalents to previous metrics, adding improved C5 metrics. To disseminate our recommendations, we created a Playbook with C5 training resources, definitions, worksheets, administrative links, screenshots and explanations for each resource. The Playbook led librarians step-by-step through the new process, addressing a previously unmet need as a job aid for standardizing the collection of usage stats. The Measurements Team charted a path through Counter 5, so that individual librarians did not have to struggle on their own.

Results/Outcome: The Quarterly Stats Playbook resulted in: More consistent, cleaner data; Faster, more efficient and standardized data collection; Happier Librarians who knew how to pull required metrics, how to interpret reports.

Evaluation Method: Feedback from Librarians; analysis of data submitted via the new process determined the utility and impact of The Playbook.

Why this is important: This data is used to show the value and fiscal stewardship of Library Services to executive leadership and stakeholders.

What you can do: Build your own C5 Playbook.

Link to The Counter 5 Playbook 

Link to the Poster.    Midwest/MC-MLA 2021 Virtual Conference Program.      

Contact Michele Matucheski for more information.

Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Medline Celebrates It's 50th Anniversary!

MEDLINE Celebrates Its 50th Anniversary!

NLM Tech Bull. 2021 Sep-Oct;(442):e7.

2021 October 13 [posted]

October 2021 marks the 50th anniversary of MEDLINE! MEDLINE is the National Library of Medicine's (NLM's) premier bibliographic database that contains more than 28 million references to journal articles in life sciences with a concentration on biomedicine.

Much has changed since MEDLINE was created in 1971. Here are some notable milestones:

  • 1960: Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) was introduced as a controlled vocabulary for indexing, cataloging, and searching biomedical information
  • 1971: MEDLINE is launched
  • 1997: PubMed is launched, allowing internet access to MEDLINE data
  • 2002: NLM Medical Text Indexer (MTI) was introduced to help automate indexing for biomedical literature
  • 2021: New MEDLINE website launches (see New MEDLINE Website and Policy Updates)

Let's take a look at MEDLINE by the numbers. In Fiscal Year 2021 (October 1, 2020 รข€“ September 30, 2021):

  • 5,281 journal titles
  • 1,291,807 citations indexed
  • 28,480,393 total citations
  • 2.58 billion PubMed searches

Reposted from The NLM Technical Bulletin ISSN 2161-2986 (Online) 
Medline Celebrates It's 50th Anniversary!    NLM Tech Bull. 2021 Sep-Oct;(442):e7.
Posted October 13, 2021.
Content not copyrighted; freely reproducible.

U.S. National Library of Medicine 8600 Rockville Pike, Bethesda, MD 20894
National Institutes of Health  


From WHSLA Member, Barbara Rugerri, MLIS, AHIP at Carrol University:


I remember taking an advanced online search class for my masters in the mid-1990’s.  It featured MEDLINE, and I honestly say I fell in love.  Prior to that class, I had never considered a library career in health sciences.  But I loved how the database worked and soon I sought out an internship at Waukesha Memorial Hospital.




Monday, October 18, 2021

Library and Office Tech from the past: Part 1

We're tidying up our space at St. Luke's Library in anticipation of a new staff member starting. That means putting in tickets to fix holes, paint walls, and going through cabinets. 

Before I said goodbye to these two pieces of old library tech, I wanted to share them with you. Did anyone else have a headset with batteries that you plugged into the back of your office phone? How about writable CDs or DVDs?

Do you have classic, mature, or age-defying library or office tech just waiting for time in the spotlight? Email your photos to brenda dot fay at aah dot org. Let's keep this thread going and celebrate high-tech library and office tools of the past! 


2021 NEJM Medical Fiction Contest Winners: Treat Yourself to the Best Short Medical Fiction


“The Billboard,” by Rachel H. Kowalsky, M.D., M.P.H.


“Emperor of the Empire,” by Margaret S. Bravo, R.N.C.

“Slack Tide,” by C. Alessandra Colaianni

Medical Fiction Contest: Inner Storytellers Found

Treat yourself to the best of short, medical fiction. The winners of this year’s NEJM Medical Fiction Contest, selected from more than 325 submissions, are “The Billboard,” “Emperor of the Empire,” and “Slack Tide.”

Read the winning stories at

Friday, October 8, 2021

Books are...

Back in spring, I took a class on library materials for children.  That's where I first encountered the work of of Dr. Rudine Sims Bishop, who explained the importance of books as mirrors, windows, and sliding glass doors.  I just came across this comic by Grant Snider that expands even further on what books can be to their readers.  Check out Incidental Comics for more of his work.

Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Celebrate National Medical Librarians Month by creating book spine poetry

Thanks to WHSLA member Mini Prasad for letting us know about this fun contest she saw in the NNLM Region 6 Weekly Digest:

In honor of National Medical Librarians Month and National Health Literacy Month NNLM is hosting a book spine poetry contest. All participants will be entered into a lottery to receive a free copy of each of the books selected from the NNLM Reading Club - a total of 15 books to add to your collection and share with your users!

The Rules

  1. Grab some books (at least 3)
  2. Stack them up!
  3. Arrange the titles to create a health related poem
  4. Take a photo and share it with us!

How to Enter

Submissions will be accepted throughout October. Send your entry on Twitter by tagging @NNLMRegion6 & use #BookSpinePoetry or e-mail Individuals can submit up to three times. 10 winners will be selected following National Medical Librarians Month and Health Literacy Month.

This is not my entry. 
I found it on another blog and it made me giggle.