The Nordic-Baltic Association for Medical and Health Information
Minutes of the Board Meeting in Estoril, Portugal 2010
Thursday, June 17th, 2010
Participants: Helena Kettner Rudberg, Åsa Ehn (Sweden), Elisabeth Husem (Norway), Conni Skrubbeltrang (Denmark), Meile Kretaviciene (Lithuania), Pirjo Rajakiili, Jouni Leinonen (Finland) and Karen Buset (Norway) as observer
1.Election of chair person and secretary for the meeting:
Sweden was responsible for the meeting and Helena Kettner Rudberg was elected chair and Åsa Ehn secretary.
2 The future of the association.
Some of the participants of the board will retire, and new board members have joined.
The Transfer of Knowledge project has come to an end. We discussed how to continue the work with the association. Some of the suggestions were: ”support each other when needed”,”work with EAHIL”. It was decided that the Baltic countries take on responsibility of doing a new website. Meile Kretaviciene will look into the possibility of the association being a SIG at the EAHIL website. It was also decided that even though the association right now is less active, it will still exist and we will continue this discussion at next year’s Board meeting.
3. Short report from each country:
The period in Estonia is characterized by economic recession and introduction of measures of economization in the health care system.
Regarding provision of the medical staff with specialist information, the year has not brought about essential changes. Tartu University Hospital, Tartu University Library and the consortium of scientific libraries have managed to maintain placement of orders for titles in both databases and e-journals as previously.
The Medical Information Centre of Tartu University Hospital has expanded the organization of continuous education courses in hospitals outside Tartu. The basic themes of continuing education courses are the following: Search possibilities in evidence-based medical databases; Information sources in medicine and health care, access possibilities and their utilization; Patient information in English-language databases etc.
Regular training courses on medical information introduced have been for physicians and nurses at Pärnu Hospital.
Continuing education courses consist of lectures and practical training involving solution of tasks.
Creation of the database of publications by Estonian medical professionals is going on. On the basis of this database, a science prize is awarded each year to a medical scientist who has published the largest number of articles as well as the most successful prolific author of the past five years. When electing the best author of five years, citations and H-index are taken into account. Both prizes for 2010 were awarded to the Andrology Centre of TU Hospital Dr. Margus Punab.
Inclusion of Clin-eguide in the eHL (Electronic Patient Record ), which was introduced in TU Hospital last year, is under discussion.
Several counties have undergone organizational changes that have affected the hospital libraries in Sweden. Some libraries have ended up belonging organisationally to the archives department, some to the R&D department. This (the organisational changes) have resulted in some fiction and general non-fiction units being closed down.
During the year, several investigations affecting the library sector has arrived, which may also be important for hospital libraries. Among them has the library law been revised. Hospital Libraries are today not mentioned in the law but in the new version there are the following proposals: “Regions and county councils are responsible for regional and county libraries and libraries of the hospitals with municipal or county ownership.” We hope this will give the hospital libraries a more secure existence in the future.
National conference for hospital libraries
In February 2010, a national conference was arranged in Eskilstuna for the hospital libraries. Over 80 people attended, representing two thirds of all those working in the Swedish hospital library. The program consisted of lectures and parallel workshops, which are based on participants' own experiences and of course social gatherings. Some of the workshops were inspired of last years EAHIL-meeting in Dublin, i.e. the Speed-dating workshop. The conference was a great success and we hope this will become an annual event.
Association of the Swedish hospital library managers
Over the past two years, the country's hospital library managers actively discussed the need to more formally establish a network or association in order to strengthen and develop cooperation between the county councils on matters of common interest for hospital libraries. Eira-cooperation, the county councils cooperation on contract and licenses, which emerged in the 2000s has had a significant impact on hospital library cooperation and have also demonstrated the need for cooperation in other areas. For this reason, a network has been formed, the Association of Sweden hospital library managers.
The reorganization of universities and university libraries is still going on in Finland and there has been and will be structural changes in many libraries. A new law governing the universities has come into operation on the 1st of January in 2010 and at the same time many library mergers have happened, for example Kuopio University Library and Joensuu University Library are now one library called University Library of Eastern Finland, also the University of Turku and Turku School of Economics emerged.
At Turku there might be 4 campus libraries in the future. There is still working group which will make plans for the structure of the new library. Perhaps the medical library will be emerged with some arts libraries (history, culture) because these institutions are situated nearby. The organization is not yet sure.
At the University of Helsinki the reorganization started in autumn 2007, when the new library model was accepted: there was 4 campus libraries with own library directors and library boards and moreover a coordination department with library director, who is responsible of coordinating of library functions, but who is not the "boss" for campus libraries. From the beginning of this year library got again a new organization model : Helsinki University Library is one single library, which has four campus libraries and a central service unit. It has one director, University Librarian and campus libraries have their own directors, but not so much power, than earlier. The staff number at this new library is altogether about 250. The name of the National Library of Health Sciences (Finland) has been changed to Meilahti Campus Library Terkko.
The ministry of education finances through FinElib-consortium a significant part of the electronic materials, that Finnish university libraries have. Because of numerous library mergers FinELib tries to find new models for funding the consortia and it is not an easy task.
4. Other matters:
4.1The next board meeting will be held in Istanbul. The Baltic countries will arrange the meeting.
4.2 Karen Buset will try to find new Board members from Norway since both Elisabeth Husem and Elisabeth Akre will retire.