Conference or Event

Medical Library Association

Document Type

Conference or Event




Objectives: McGoogan Library of Medicine at University of Nebraska Medical Center launched a pilot partnership with the new Resource and Wellness Center at Fred and Pamela Buffett Cancer Center in Omaha, NE. The goals of this pilot were to provide patients and families with easy access to quality health information, assess the health information needs of cancer patients and their families, and explore the demand for library services in the resource center.

Methods: From June 2017 through March 2018, library faculty and staff worked daily shifts at the Resource and Wellness Center and answered consumer health questions. Statistics were compiled on the number and type of health information questions received. Librarians also helped select consumer health books and brochures. The library gathered additional feedback through meetings with the Oncology Patient and Family Advisory Council, clinical staff, and health system administrators.

Results: Library faculty and staff spent 656 hours at the Resource and Wellness Center and received thirty-two requests for consumer health information. Most questions were related to a specific type of cancer, resources for coping, and practical issues such as financial assistance for treatments. The resource center now has a small collection of print materials, and an index was created to assist staff with navigating the information materials when a librarian is not present. Meetings with stakeholder groups provided insight on the organizational culture of the cancer center, and recommendations for improving engagement with patients and families. Lessons learned during this pilot will be shared during the poster presentation.

Conclusions: McGoogan Library adds value to the Resource and Wellness Center by providing patients, families, and staff with expertise in identifying and accessing quality health information to support cancer care. Feedback from stakeholders has affirmed the importance of the library’s continued involvement in this space. The pilot has helped make librarians more accessible to cancer patients and families and increased the number of consumer health information requests the library receives. Future activities will include creating new library marketing materials specific to cancer patients and health providers, continuing to develop the collection of print materials, implementing an evaluation form to assess patron satisfaction, and launching a pilot tablet-lending program.