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The impact of libraries and informationists on patient and population care: a mixed-methods study.
Shannon C, Freeman J, MacEachern M, et al. J Med Libr Assoc. 2024;112(1):5-12. doi:10.5195/jmla.2024.1520
Objective: While several studies have examined the effectiveness of librarian interactions with clinicians and impact of librarians on patient care, no studies have explored a library’s effects on population care. The goal of this study was to investigate the library’s impact on both patient and population care.
Methods: Using a sequential exploratory mixed-methods design, we first interviewed a small set of clinicians and researchers active in patient and population care. Based on the themes that we discovered through coding the interviews, we created a survey that was sent to faculty in the health sciences and the health system.
Results: We collected data from a representative sample of our population. We discovered that all respondents value the library and informationists, using our services most for teaching, publishing, presenting, and professional development.
Conclusion: We now have data to support our value to our population and to show where we can do more work to improve the use of our services. Our study shows the value of doing a mixed-methods sequential exploration in which themes that are important to our user community were identified prior to launching a large-scale survey.