The great #ukmedlibs Christmas quiz. 8 pm, Tuesday 18th December

We are proud to announce that the second annual #ukmedlibs Christmas quiz will take place at 8pm on Tuesday 18th December, and we are most grateful to EBSCO who have generously sponsored a £20 Amazon voucher for the winner.

To avoid skullduggery and googling, the questions will be made available on the night. See you there!


Transcript and analytics for last night’s discovery systems chat

Thanks everyone who took part in last night’s chat on discovery systems. The transcript and analytics are now up, with thanks to Symplur.

Our December chat is at 8 pm on Tuesday 18th December and the #ukmedlibs elves are hard at work on a festive theme.

Discovery systems chat, Tuesday 20th November: the questions

Tonight’s the night, and here’s some questions to structure the discussion. Join us online at 8pm at the hashtag #ukmedlibs

  1. Does your library have a discovery system? If not, are you considering one?
  2. What do you hope a discovery system will achieve? How can discovery systems offer our users a better experience?
  3. How do you see the relationship between discovery of digital and print resources? Should both be findable in a discovery system?
  4. If you’ve used a discovery system, how easy or labour –intensive is it to manage and maintain?
  5. What can we learn from discovery systems in use in higher education? And NHS Wales and Scotland?
  6. What else could discovery systems do? Current awareness?
  7. Are discovery systems better suited to general collections covering the whole of human knowledge, and less suited to medical information?
  8. Do they really overcome multiple logins?
  9. Why not use Google and or SciHub?
  10. National, regional or local?
  11. How do we want to see our discovery systems evolve?


Discovery systems: flavour of the month (November chat )?

Discovery systems seem to be all the rage. Widely adopted in higher education libraries, and heavily promoted by vendors, some NHS libraries have installed a discovery system, though we have no information on their use in non-NHS, non HE health libraries, such as Royal Colleges, membership organisations and charities.

Knowledge for Healthcare commissioned Ken Chad to report on discovery systems for the NHS. His report, summarised in this Knowledge for Healthcare blog post, recommends a single national gateway to enable NHS staff to access trusted, high quality resources, services and support, and highlights the need to provide end users with a better experience, and to reduce the complexity of the existing infrastructure, which complicates access for end-users and carries high maintenance costs.

Igor Brbre kindly recommended two other resources for those wishing to know more: Unified Resource Discovery Comparison and Discovery Tools: a bibliography.

Whether you already have a discovery system, are looking at procuring one, are waiting for the NHS gateway, or just wondering what they can do, you’ll find it informative.

Knowvember: Demystifying knowledge management

You’ve heard of it, you might think it sounds like something other people do or you might have even dabbled in it yourself. Wherever you are on this spectrum, knowledge management is a core skill in the librarian’s toolbox. Knowvember ( is a brand-new initiative that aims to inspire library and information professionals to deliver a knowledge management activity during the month of November (see what we did there?) Whether you are new to knowledge management or a seasoned professional, Knowvember is an opportunity to showcase this core skill and demonstrate how library and information services can contribute value to an organisation and enable the delivery of high-quality care.
Join the Knowvember project team in October’s #ukmedlib chat where we’ll be demystifying the dark art of knowledge management with seven key questions:
  1. What do you think ‘knowledge management’ is? What activities do you associate with knowledge management?
  2. What are some of the knowledge management activities you have delivered? Were they successful? Would you do anything differently?
  3. How do you measure the impact of a knowledge management activity in your organisation?
  4. What resources do you use to support knowledge management?
  5. What value do you think knowledge management would bring to your organisation?
  6. What are some of the barriers to delivering knowledge management and how can we start to overcome them?
  7. Have you thought of an activity that you could deliver for #knowvember18?


Join the conversation on 16th October at 8pm

Current awareness chat: introduction and questions

With thanks to Lucy Reid, here’s an introduction to, and questions for,  next Tuesday’s chat on current awareness service. Join us on 18th September at 8 pm.

Keeping up-to-date is vitally important for healthcare practitioners.  But, as we all know, the pace of change and the volume of publishing makes this difficult.  Current awareness services are a valuable tool for helping staff to keep up-to-date with their area of practice and most NHS LKS services report offering current awareness services ranging from circulating tables of contents and using Knowledge Share for personalised alerts through to bespoke abstracting create tailored current awareness bulletins.  In 2015-16, a Knowledge for Healthcare working group found that 84 NHS England library services were producing one or more current awareness bulletins.  During this #ukmedlibs chat we’d like to revisit these findings and delve a little deeper into the creation and circulation of current awareness bulletins.  We’ll be thinking about at the Knowledge for Healthcare current awareness bulletin guidelines and bulletin repository ( so do have a quick look ahead of time if you can.


  1. Do you produce your own current awareness bulletins, circulate bulletins produced by other services or both?
  2. What characterises a high quality bulletin?  Are there any that you’d recommend as exemplary?
  3. How are you evaluating your current awareness bulletins? Do you look at usage, reach or impact? What are your findings?
  4. How much time do you spend in an average week on your current awareness bulletins (compiling, modifying and circulating)?
  5. Have you used the Knowledge for Healthcare current awareness bulletin guidelines and bulletin repository ( to inform your practice or source bulletins?
  6. The principle behind the guidelines and repository is to facilitate collaboration and reduce duplication in bulletin production. Whether you’re a creator or distributor of bulletins, what would help colleagues to “do once and share”?

Current awareness services: September chat, 8pm Tuesday 18th

Our September chat will be on current awareness services, and will be led by Lucy Reid, Deputy Head of Library and Knowledge Services and Technology Enhanced Learning at  London and KSS Library and Knowledge Services, and her colleagues from her cohort on the Knowledge for Healthcare Senior Leadership programme. Questions will follow soon, but mark your diaries for 8pm on Tuesday 18th, and remember the hashtag, #ukmedlibs.

Open access: transcript and analytics of the July #ukmedlibs chat

Thanks to everyone who took part in last night’s chat on open access. The transcript and analytics are now available, thanks to Symplur.

We may only have scratched the surface of a complicated subject, but there were some potentially useful actions: CILIP’s Health Libraries Group undertook to review their position on open access to Health Information and Libraries Journal, EAHIL offered their expertise, whose journal has been open access for some time and recently moved to a new platform, and several of us now have Open Access Week in our diaries.

We takle a break in August, but will be back in September, for what the French call la rentrée. Enjoy the summer.

Website for the #ukmedlibs Twitter chats