Earlier last week people on medlib-l discussed (The perfect library storm) closures of hospital libraries. They are seeing a contradiction between Evidenced Based Medicine imperatives vs budget and resource demands on hospital libraries. Some are seeing how the increase in pricing and bundling practices have caused the hospitals to “throw it back to the physicians and staff” causing libraries to close. I interpret this statement to be that the hospitals are no longer willing to provide monies for institutional support of resources (the library) and require doctors and staff to buy their own resources.
This email conversation is very timely. It turns out this week I will be in Tulsa, OK teaching the class, “The Evolving Librarian: Responding to changes in the workplace and in healthcare.” Technology changes, social changes and healthcare changes have forced hospital librarians to step back and really change the way we do things.
Personally, we hospital librarians need to start treating our library like a hospital department and not a library. I mentioned this in my medlib-l post. I know this statment sounds odd because you might think we do that already. I think we could do better. I think librarians not only need to align their goals to the hospitals, but they need to make the hospital’s goals their goals. Continue reading