Electronically Speaking

by Robb Mackes / 14 October 2014 / No Comments

Nearly 500 electronic resources—high-quality, medical books, journals and databases—are now available through the Fall 2014 Offer put together by the HSLANJ Group Licensing Initiative. We recently talked to a number of medical librarians about the value of electronic resources… here are their valuable insights:


It’s absolutely essential to deliver content directly to our users through electronic means. 95% of what we have available is electronic.

Mary Jo Russell, Manager of Library Services, Vassar Brothers Medical Center, Poughkeepsie, NY


Having electronic access allows more people to use the information at any given time. It’s beneficial at any place, at any time—they don’t have to physically go to the library.

Donna Soultoukis, School of Nursing Library, Our Lady of Lourdes Medical Center, Camden, NJ


They’re greatly preferred by most of our users. It’s easier to have them in our situation, which is a three hospital network, because we can make the resources available to everyone.

Helen Houpt, Librarian, Pinnacle Health System, Harrisburg PA


In the past when we had print collections it was limited to one user at one time or we could provide articles through document delivery or interlibrary loan. Now that we have electronic resources, they are accessible anytime, anywhere, to as many users as want them. We increased accessibility exponentially.

And I know that our electronic usage is rising. In 2013, there were 2,000 articles accessed; in 2014 it was 3,000. Usage is going up steadily and taking a quantum leap soon because we’re going to start providing remote access.

Jean Jenkins, Medical Librarian, Our Lady of Lourdes Memorial Hospital, Binghamton, NY


We are a geographically diverse organization with physicians and clinicians located in PA, NJ and DE that work in and out of our facilities. We also have clinics across FL. So, we have to have electronic resources. If a clinician is in Wilmington, DE and then seeing a patient in Sussex County, DE—more than an hour away— they need access to the same resources. It’s an absolute necessity for us.

Are electronic resources the way of future?

Yes at first we were getting pushback but now electronic resources are all they (physicians and clinicians) want. As more journals and publishers offer resources through apps, I think that will become more important as well.

Kristina Flathers, Medical Library, Alfred I. DuPont Hospital for Children, Wilmington, DE


To take a look at the Fall 2014 Offer, contact Robb Mackes at (570) 856-5952 or rtmackes (at) gmail.com. The deadline to participate in the Offer is October 31. All MAR and SE/A medical facilities are welcome to participate.