Communicating with medical library users during COVID-19

Dana Haugh

Abstract


Background: The Harvey Cushing/John Hay Whitney Medical Library serves a community of over 22,000 individuals primarily from the Yale Schools of Medicine, Public Health, and Nursing and the Yale New Haven Hospital. Though they are geographically close to one another, reaching these disparate populations can be a challenge. Having a clear and thorough communication plan has proved invaluable in transcending communication chasms, especially in recent times of crisis.

Case Presentation: This article describes the Harvey Cushing/John Hay Whitney Medical Library’s methods for communicating and promoting its remote resources and services in response to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). It details our communication strategies and messages leading up to, and after, the Yale campus was closed and specifies how we pivoted from reaching users inside the library to reaching our audiences remotely.

Conclusions: Our communication plan has provided the foundation for all of our messaging, be it print or digital media. In recent moments of crisis, it has been especially helpful for planning and executing large scale messaging. Similarly, knowing whom to contact around our organization to promote our message in different and broader ways has been extremely beneficial.

 This article has been approved for the Medical Library Association’s Independent Reading Program.


Keywords


Marketing and Communications; Medical Libraries; Communication Plan; COVID-19; Remote Services and Resources

Full Text:

PDF HTML

References


Duhon L, Jameson J. Health information outreach: a survey of U.S. academic libraries, highlighting a Midwestern university’s experience. Health Inf Libr J. 2013 Jun;30(2):121–37.

Swanberg S, Mi M, Engwall K, Bulgarelli N. Community engagement at an emerging academic medical library: a three-pronged outreach model. Med Ref Serv Q. 2018 Jul–Sep;37(3):234–48.

Pozdol J. Ten steps to increase library impact on an academic health sciences campus. Med Ref Serv Q. 2010 Jul;29(3):229–39.

World Health Organization. Q&A: coronavirus disease (COVID-19) [Internet]. The Organization; 2020 [cited 10 Aug 2020]. .

Holshue ML, DeBolt C, Lindquist S, Lofy KH, Wiesman J, Bruce H, Spitters C, Ericson K, Wilkerson S, Tural A, Diaz G, Cohn A, Fox L, Patel A, Gerber SI, Kim LK, Tong S, Lu X, Lindstrom S, Pallansch MA, Weldon WC, Biggs HM, Uyeki TM, Pillai SK , Washington State 2019-nCoV Case Investigation Team. First case of 2019 novel coronavirus in the United States. New England J Med. 2020 Mar 5;382(10):929–36.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19): how to protect yourself & others [Internet]. The Centers; 2020 [cited 8 Apr 2020]. .

Harvey Cushing/John Hay Whitney Medical Library. 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19): latest research [Internet]. New Haven, CT: Yale University; 2020 [cited 8 Apr 2020]. .

Argenti PA, Howell RA, Beck KA. The strategic communication imperative. MIT Sloan Manag Rev. 2005 Spring;46(3).

Rossmann D. Creating an organizationally embedded strategic communication plan for libraries. Libr Leadersh Manag. 2019;33:1–17.




DOI: https://doi.org/10.5195/jmla.2021.1003

Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.




Copyright (c) 2021 Dana Haugh

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.