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I am the director with whom Dalia Kleinmuntz spoke about the patient
library at Beth Israel Hospital in Boston.  The article to which she refers
was a bit premature as the nurses involved hadn't been given a budget or even a
clear mission.  They were trying to expand upon a "patient information"
(i.e. patient referal) line as well as to find a means to provide
centralized patient education.  Additionally, the hospital was trying to
provide a community service (which was a requirement in building a new
clinical center).  Originally, the plans called for a "patient information
kiosk".   Calling it a library, even at the beginning of the involvement of
the Nursing Dept. was a bit of a misnomer, but a step in the right direction.
 
About a week after Dalia called, Jay Daly (co-director at the time) and I
got a call from the nurse in charge of the project who was eager to tap
us for knowledge, information, ideas, etc.  She left the hospital several
months later and, just when we were beginning to wonder if the project
had bit the dust, was replaced by a nurse with a much clearer vision.
She & I had a lengthy meeting as soon as she took charge.  She soon
formed an advisory committee on which I am most certainly a vocal presence.
I am as anxious as they are to get the library off of the ground (the
library is only one part of the entire "Patient Family Learning Resource
Center"; the rest is patient referral, discharge info and other types of
patient education.  The Medical Library currently gets many visits
from patients and family members whom we are ill-equipped to help because
of the limited clinical and research budget under which we operate.
 
Of course we will remain involved  in the planning and operation of the
project.  We probably *will* add the books to our online catalog and,
hopefully, *they* will finance the expensive Health Reference Center which
we will mount locally on our LAN.  Staffing is a *very* sensitive issue
(all over the hospital) which is still up in the air.  But I have enough
anecdotal information for the committee about patient inquiries that they
have stopped talking (maybe not stopped thinking but at least stopped
talking) about staffing with volunteers.
 
That's all for now (to those of you who made it this far).  Be well!
 
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Margo Hoekstra Coletti           Internet: [log in to unmask]
Director
Agoos Medical Library            Phone: (617) 667-4225
Beth Israel Hospital
330 Brookline Ave.               Fax:   (617) 667-7197
Boston, MA 02215
 
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On Sat, 15 Apr 1995, Webster Library wrote:
 
> _business is business_).  Here's another one:  I saw a write up on a
> patient library opening at Beth Israel Hospital in Boston.  I called the
> Director (name escapes me at the moment) who knew NOTHING about it at the
> time.  The write  up was in a Beth Israel publication.  It was, again,
> under Nursing Dept. auspicies.  I won't be surprised if the Library was
> told to catalog all the books...after the fact.
>
>