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National Library of Medicine Technical BulletinNational Library of Medicine Technical Bulletin

Table of Contents: 2019 SEPTEMBER–OCTOBER No. 430

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NLM Board of Regents Approves the NLM Collection and Preservation Policy

Backus J, Funk K, Marill JL, & Paltoo DN. NLM Board of Regents Approves the NLM Collection and Preservation Policy. NLM Tech Bull. 2019 Sep-Oct;(430):e6.

2019 October 16 [posted]

On September 11, 2019, the National Library of Medicine (NLM) Board of Regents (BOR) approved the NLM Collection and Preservation Policy. This new policy supports the purpose for which NLM was established, as described in the United States Code, "to assist the advancement of medical and related sciences and to aid the dissemination and exchange of scientific and other information important to the progress of medicine and to the public health..." (42 U.S.C. 286). Central to this mission is the development and preservation of a collection that supports contemporary biomedical and health care research and practice as well as future scholarship.

The 2019 policy provides the framework for NLM collection and preservation activities and acknowledges the changing landscape of scholarly communications and growth in electronic publishing. The policy aligns with the NLM Strategic Plan 2017-2027: A Platform for Biomedical Discovery and Data-Powered Health, recognizing the interconnected nature of the biomedical and scientific literature with data and other research objects in a digital landscape. Other considerations include funder policies for public access; the development of several heavily used NLM databases including PubMed; changes in the volume, formats and expectations of research outputs; and the overall increase in data and digital objects. The policy recognizes that the scope of the collection may change over time, and that NLM collecting efforts must be flexible to support a variety of NLM, National Institutes of Health (NIH), and other federal policies, initiatives, and programs.

The BOR adopted the Collection Development Policy of the NLM in 1976 and subsequently updated it in 1983 and 1992. The NLM Preservation Policy was adopted in 1986 to fulfill the mandate to maintain and preserve the biomedical literature. The new NLM Collection and Preservation Policy combines these two policies, as both collection and preservation of biomedical materials are integral to NLM's mission.

By Joyce Backus
Library Operations
Katie Funk
National Center for Biotechnology Information
Jennifer L. Marill
Technical Services Division
Dr. Dina N. Paltoo
Office of the Director

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