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I have worked at two large teaching hospitals, both having Library
Committees.  My experience with the Committees has been very positive.
Yes, it is disappointing when I spend considerable time preparing and then
attendance is sometimes poor.  But the Minutes from the Committee meetings can
prove to be very good documentation.
 
Our Lib Comm at LIJ meets about three times a year.  I report on library
operations as well as any special projects or policies.  The last year we
spent at least half the time talking about our plans for and then
implementation of our CD-ROM network.  I report on possible budget
problems, but not the line by line budget.   The Comm mainly serves as a
way for our different constituencies to talk to each other relevant to
their information needs, and also report on succcess and problems
to administration and the Board of Trustees.  The Minutes of the meetings are
sent to the Board.  The discussions are ususally quite lively!
 
I cultivate a good relationship with the Comm. Chair.  Together we ensure
that there are physicians from education, research, & administration on
the Comm, and also  representation from the voluntary staff, house staff,
nursing, and allied health.  Both the Comm. Chair and my boss (VP for
Education and Research) have used the Minutes and recommendations from the
Committee to successfully advance issues of importance to the library.
 
This was rather a long winded way of saying, I think Library committees
are still helpful - if you use them to your advantage.
 
Debbie Rand
Library Director
Long Island Jewish Med Ctr, NY
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