Helping Medical Librarians to Meet Challenges: The HSLANJ Group Licensing Initiative

by Karen Hendricks / 15 September 2017 / No Comments

The Fall 2017 Offer will soon be available to all medical librarians in the NN/LM MAR, SE/A, and NER. Many librarians have participated for many years; we continue to welcome many new participants as well.

We recently asked several medical librarians their opinions on this topic:

What challenges do you face as a medical librarian and how does the HSLANJ GLI help you meet those challenges?

I have a virtual library—my whole library is electronic—therefore I need electronic resources. Electronic resources allow people to have access to information all the time. Technically, the library is available to anybody, all the time, wherever they are. That’s the direction things are moving, they’re moving to a digital world and using the library space for other things.

Participating in the group licensing initiative gives me a discount that I desperately need; I have limited funds. 

I’m unique in that I do a lot of clinical outreach. I support patient care very directly, and I want to be sure the information can come to my fingertips, so I can pass it on. Things are in a 12 or 24 hour window. I need the tools available to me, in order to do my job well. Having the resources from the HSLANJ GLI allows me to do that.

Helen-Ann Brown Epstein / Virtua Health / Mount Laurel, NJ

To be able to consortially purchase or subscribe to databases—the more subscribers there are, the more the prices go down. It’s also nice to be able to go to one source and get a number of databases. I started subscribing to a number of new ones this year.

I’m just really happy with the HSLANJ GLI and I will keep getting the resources that I’ve been getting. If another one comes along that feels like it would fit in and I can afford it, I wouldn’t hesitate to get it through HSLANJ. Some of my colleagues get resources through the HSLANJ GLI–that’s how I learned about several. I rely on colleagues for advice and good recommendations.

David F. Lester, MLS / Director of Library Services / Arnot Health / Elmira, NY

We are most definitely, in the hospital setting, in a threatened setting, where upper administration sees us not as a money making department. They are radically downsizing hospital libraries across the country. So for me to show a cost savings is extremely important.

The bottom line for us is—it’s all about price. It looks good to your hospital administrators when you’re trying to get the best price possible.

We have participated in both offers, the spring and fall offer, every year. It’s the same resources we’re repeatedly renewing—things that get heavily used; I occasionally add something else in. The process has evolved into the new online program; it’s a little bit of an adjustment getting used to that but honestly the rest is streamlined and easy.

Elizabeth (Beth) Mamo / Rochester General Hospital / Rochester, NY

We are a state library, so we are dependent on government funding (which this year wasn’t looking so great) so knowing we can talk to our stakeholders and let them know we can get great prices by participating, it shows we’re making all the efforts to have good practices with our budget.

Our library just expanded last year and received a budget so 2016 was our first time participating as a department library.  Certainly being a small library with a limited budget, there’s no way we’d be able to purchase resources on our own… being in a consortium is the only way we could make that happen.

Alison Wessel / Director of Library and Information Services / Delaware Department of Health and Social Services / DHSS Library / Herman M. Holloway Sr. Health and Social Services Campus / New Castle, DE

For more information on the HSLANJ GLI, contact Project Manager Robb Mackes  (email or 570-856-5952).