Health Information and Libraries for Evaluation and Research Network (HEALER)

David Stewart, Director of Health Libraries North West and a member of the Board of Directors of the LIS Research Coalition, has contributed a guest blog post on the Health Information and Libraries for Evaluation and Research network (HEALER). David writes:

Health Information and Libraries for Evaluation and Research network (HEALER)

David Stewart

David Stewart

Are you interested in research and in evaluating your library service? Then the HEALER network is for you! It’s free to join and open to anyone who is interested in improving the evidence base for health sciences librarianship, whether that be through formal research, service audit or local evaluations of service.

Our formal aim is to “bring together all those interested in developing the evidence base for health sciences librarianship in the UK.  The network recognises that research, evaluation and service audit are all valid and important elements of the evidence base.”

We have a broad and growing membership of the individuals and group that includes:

  • NHS and Higher Education health library staff
  • NHS Strategic Health Authority Library Leads Group (SHALL)
  • University Departments of Library & Information Science
  • University Departments of Health Sciences with researchers interested in health information
  • Publishers (in particular the Editor of Health Information and Libraries Journal)
  • NICE: NHS Evidence Service
  • National Institute for Health Research
  • Consortium of Health Independent Libraries in London (CHILL)
  • Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE)

Our objectives are:

  • To provide an opportunity for individuals to meet colleagues interested in developing the evidence base through research, evaluation and audit
  • To identify areas and questions that need research and to agree priorities for shared approaches
  • To explore options for shared funding and commissioning of research
  • To share information about research calls in this field
  • To find ways of getting research into practice and of sharing the results with the wider health community
  • To link NHS and HE individuals and organisations publishing in this field
  • To be an advocate for improving and developing research in this field
  • To find ways of increasing research capacity and capability
  • To develop the research, evaluation and audit skills of health sciences librarians and to develop tools to support them

We have at least one event each year, part of which is learning and sharing, and part a short business meeting. You can see what has happened at previous events at our web pages: http://www.libraryservices.nhs.uk/healer/. Our next meetings will be as part of the Health Libraries Group Conference in Glasgow, 12–13 July 2012.

We have also created an online step-by-step guide to carrying out research in the health library setting at http://www.libraryservices.nhs.uk/healer/researchguidelines/

If you would like to join the HEALER Network, then please e-mail Hannah Spring at h.spring@yorksj.ac.uk and we will then add you to our e-mail discussion list.

 

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