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National Network of Libraries of Medicine Regional Medical Library Contracts Awarded

The National Library of Medicine announces new five-year contracts to eight institutions to serve as Regional Medical Libraries in the National Network of Libraries of Medicine. The Network consists of the eight competitively selected regional medical libraries, and over 5,700 health sciences and public libraries.

Since its original authorization by Congress in the 1965 Medical Library Assistance Act, the National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NN/LM) has worked to advance the progress of medicine and improve the public health by providing health professionals and the general public with equal access to biomedical information. The goals of the 2006-2011 contracts are: to develop collaborations among Network members, community-based organizations and other institutions; to promote awareness of biomedical resources with a special emphasis on contributing to the Healthy People 2010 goal of eliminating health disparities; and to improve electronic access to health information for all U.S. citizens.

The 2006-2011 Regional Medical Libraries are:

  1. Middle Atlantic Region
    New York University
    Frederick L. Ehrman Medical Library
    New York, NY
    States Served: DE, NJ, NY, PA
  2. Southeastern/Atlantic Region
    University of Maryland, Baltimore
    Health Sciences and Human Services Library
    Baltimore, MD
    States Served: AL, FL, GA, MD, MS, NC,
    SC, TN, VA,WV, the District of Columbia, Puerto
    Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands
  3. Greater Midwest Region
    The University of Illinois at Chicago
    Library of the Health Sciences
    Chicago, IL
    States Served: IA, IL, IN, KY, MI, MN,
    ND, OH, SD, WI
  4. Midcontinental Region
    University of Utah
    Spencer S. Eccles Health Sciences Library
    Salt Lake City, UT
    States Served: CO, KS, MO, NE, UT, WY
  5. South Central Region
    Houston Academy of Medicine
    Texas Medical Center Library
    Houston, TX
    States Served: AR, LA, NM, OK, TX
  6. Pacific Northwest Region
    University of Washington
    Health Sciences Libraries and Information Center
    Seattle, WA
    States Served: AK, ID, MT, OR, WA
  7. Pacific Southwest Region
    University of California, Los Angeles
    Louise M. Darling Biomedical Library
    Los Angeles, CA
    States Served: AZ, CA, HI, NV, and
    U.S. Territories in the Pacific Basin
  8. New England Region
    University of Massachusetts Medical School
    The Lamar Soutter Library
    Worcester, MA
    States Served: CT, MA, ME, NH, RI, VT

The University of Washington will continue as the Outreach Evaluation Resource Center and will also serve as the new Web Services Technology Operations Center.

Role of the Regional Medical Libraries (RMLs)

The RMLs and NN/LM member libraries are vital in NLM's outreach efforts to health professionals and consumers to increase awareness, facilitate access, and provide training in the use of NLM's many Web-based information services. These include: the Medline/PubMed database of more than 16 million citations to biomedical journal articles; the MedlinePlus consumer health information service, which provides access to full-text information produced by the National Institutes of Health and other authoritative sources, and a directory of locally available health services; and ClinicalTrials.gov, which provides current information about clinical research studies.

The Regional Medical Libraries will continue their efforts to reach underserved health professionals in rural and inner city areas, the public health workforce, and special populations. NN/LM members will work with a variety of intermediaries, including health care providers, public health professionals, public librarians, educators, community organizations, health advocacy groups, faith-based organizations, and self-help groups, to reach members of the public.

The Regional Medical Libraries also exhibit and demonstrate NLM's products and services at national, regional and state health professional and consumer oriented meetings; provide training and consultations; coordinate the basic network services such as interlibrary loan; and work to improve the supporting infrastructure for health sciences libraries. Although NN/LM programs have historically been implemented on a regional basis, the new contracts will continue to provide more opportunities for cross-regional and national collaborations.

Information about the National Network of Libraries of Medicine and the Regional Medical Libraries is on the Web at http://nnlm.gov. Located in Bethesda, Maryland, the National Library of Medicine is the world's largest library of the health sciences. For more information, visit the Web site at http://www.nlm.nih.gov/.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH)--The National Medical Research Agency--includes 27 Institutes and Center and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. It is the primary federal agency for conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and it investigates the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit http://www.nih.gov.

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