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Exhibitions: For All the People

Public Programming Example for For All the People

Trusted Information from Trusted Sources: NLM's MedlinePlus for Community Health Workers

Participants, trusted community health partners, gain continuing education credits as they learn about MedlinePlus’s multilingual and multicultural resources. With this knowledge, they can empower patients to participate in decision-making about their own care by promoting health literacy and NLM’s reliable health information resources.

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    • Community Health Workers (CHWs), also known as promotoras or promotores de salud in Spanish, promote wellness and discuss health concerns with members of specific populations or communities, often their own
    • Peer Health Navigators (PHNs) are trained support specialists serving people who share similar personal lived health experiences such as recovery from substance use or living with HIV/AIDS
    • In this program, health sciences librarians will develop synchronous or self-paced continuing education modules for CHWs and PHNs using MedlinePlus
    • NLM’s MedlinePlus and MedlinePlus Español present high-quality, trusted health and wellness information that is easy to understand and free of advertising. The full site is available in both English and Spanish, and selected health information resources are available in over 50 languages
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    • Use MedlinePlus to find reliable multilingual and multicultural health information resources
    • Learn and apply core concepts of evaluating internet health information
    • Empower patients to participate in decision-making about their own care by promoting health literacy and NLM’s reliable health information resources
    • Earn continuing education hours or credits to achieve or retain professional credentials
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    • Community Health Workers (CHWs)
    • Promotoras / Promotores
    • Peer Health Navigators (PHNs)
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  • MedlinePlus provides trusted, up-to-date health information for health professionals and consumers alike, including:

    MedlinePlus Español presenta información relevente sobre salud confinable y puesto al día para las personas que trabajan en la industria al cuidado de la salud y pacientes por igual, incluso:

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    • CHW or PHN professional associations
    • Local community clinics, hospitals, or health systems
    • Master of Public Health programs
    • Peer counseling programs
    • Rehabilitation and recovery programs
    • State or local public health agencies
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  • Time

    • Planning: 5-15 hours
    • Implementation: 1-3 hours


    • No funds are required to run this program as described

    Suggested supplies (provide these or distribute a supply list)

    Before the program

    • As health sciences librarians, your primary audience is likely your campus, but your knowledge of health information resources and tools positions you as a powerful community partner in health literacy. If you are looking for some inspiration or a program model, watch “Promotores de Salud” from News & Events from NLM, a short video about how Health Sciences Outreach Services Librarian Yamila El-Khayat from the University of Arizona provides NLM-centered, culturally-responsive, multilingual learning opportunities to CHWs in Tucson, AZ
    • Decide if you would like to offer continuing education credits. If so, one of these options may be helpful for you to pursue:
      1. In most states, you will need to apply to be an official continuing education provider. If your organization is not yet authorized to offer continuing education credits and you want to offer this as a formal training opportunity, partner with an authorized provider or check with the proper state authority by searching “[your state] + [community health worker continuing education]”
      2. The Medical Library Association (MLA) approves and lists courses for MLA continuing education credit and State of Illinois continuing nursing education credit. Browse their website for full instructions on getting your course approved for MLA credits
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    • Amplify and contextualize this program by making it part of a National Health Observance such as Minority Health Month (April), Talk to Your Doctor Month (August), or Health Insurance Enrollment Month (September)
    • Amplify or contextualize this program by making it part of a locally or culturally relevant event, celebration, or observance
    • Partner with a pre-authorized continuing education provider such as a professional association or a public health department
    • Partner with a local cultural organization, community clinic, and/or translator to develop and co-create the course. If possible, offer compensation or a mutual benefit such as providing the course materials for future use or covering translation costs
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    1. NLM’s MedlinePlus and MedlinePlus Español present high-quality, relevant health and wellness information that is trusted, easy to understand, and free of advertising, in both English and Spanish. It includes links from the National Library of Medicine, the National Institutes of Health, other U.S. federal government agencies, and selected non-government websites based on strict quality guidelines or criterios. Direct participants to the MedlinePlus Evaluating Internet Health Information Tutorial and allow 15 minutes for participants to work through the tutorial individually or in small groups
    2. Working in small groups, one person from each group should provide an example of a website they, clients, patients, or family members have used for health information
    3. Together, group members can evaluate this website using the checklist of questions to ask when browsing websites. After about 10 minutes, all participants can come back together to share what they learned from the exercise
    4. Working in small groups, participants identify at least one MedlinePlus Health Topic or temas de salud ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­page and one specific resource they find linked on the topic page (such as a PDF, video, or tutorial) that they would recommend in one the following scenarios:
      • Your client has stopped going to her doctor because she never seemed to get her questions answered during her appointments so the visits seemed like a waste of time
      • Your client has been seeing the same doctor for years and has a good relationship with her. His health issues have increased lately. You find out he has been taking aceite de eucalipto (eucalyptus oil) for years but he doesn’t understand why he would need to tell his doctor about that, since it’s an herb
      • Your client was just diagnosed with cancer. She lives with extended family members who are active in her care and want to understand more about cancer and cancer treatment, but they read and speak only Polish and her doctor only speaks English
    5. Reconvene participants and ask participants to share their findings, and how they came to the resources they chose
    6. To close the program, participants may share how they will use MedlinePlus with their clients after this course
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Last Reviewed: January 7, 2022