Summer 2002
The School
of Medicine Library
the Newsletter of the School of Medicine Library,
Summer 2002

2001-2002 In Review

On behalf of the Library faculty and staff, I would like to welcome all new students, faculty, and staff to the School of Medicine and welcome back our returning students. As we begin the new academic year, it's appropriate to reflect on the Library's accomplishments during the past academic year.

Second floor renovation
  • The first part of the academic year was spent moving 3,700 boxes of journals out of storage and unpacking them onto the newly painted shelving. This was a massive task for staff in the Library and Support Services. The Support Services staff also moved and reassembled all the study carrels and other furniture in temporary storage.
  • As soon as the four new group study rooms had furniture in them and the carrels were back in place, the students eagerly settled in and began studying.
  • Work on the History of Medicine room was recently completed and we're in the process of moving the rare book collection into the bookcases.
Digital library expansion
  • Implemented a proxy server that finally eliminated the access barrier for our students and faculty at the Palmetto Health Richland campus.
  • Expanded the e-journal collection by over 100 titles.
  • Significantly improved functionality and speed of Ovid database system with migration to Ovid Online. The need for passwords has been eliminated. The Medline database is now updated weekly rather than monthly. Users may now search the entire Medline database from 1966-present all at once. Access to full text articles in Medline is also much faster.
  • Added the database Health and Psychosocial Instruments (HAPI) to Ovid.
  • Added access to Reprotox, a database that contains information on the potentially harmful effects of environmental exposure to chemicals and physical agents on human pregnancy, reproduction, and development.
  • Added a section on PDA resources on the Library's website and revamped and updated the Biomedical Sites section.
  • Improvements to the Library's electronic document delivery service were begun through collaboration with Thomas Cooper Library on the ILLiad system. ILL Express! will be made available to users in Fall 2002.
Educational services growth
  • Expanded monthly class offerings to include classes on new information tools, including ScienceDirect and Evidence-Based Medicine.
  • Participated in the problem-based learning curriculum. One library faculty member served as a group facilitator.
  • Initiated an individual consultation service for School of Medicine faculty. A librarian will work with a faculty member one-on-one on solving an information problem, provide training in using e-journals or databases, or assist with complex searches.
  • Sponsored a teleconference presented by the Medical Library Association entitled "Sync or Swim: Surviving the Flood of PDAs in Healthcare." Over thirty medical librarians, medical students, residents, and physicians attended the two-hour program that explored current trends of PDA use in medical practice, education, and information delivery.
Increase in partnerships and grants
  • Won a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities and completed a preservation needs assessment of the rare book collection.
  • Led the Bioinformatics Core for the South Carolina Biomedical Research Infrastructure Network (BRIN) grant proposal. Created website at, sponsored GenBank workshop attended by 56 researchers from across South Carolina, convened two meetings of SC BRIN library directors, and coordinated consortial purchase of Nature online e-journal for 20 SC BRIN institutions.
  • Expanded Center for Disability Resources Library collection and aggressively promoted the Library to state agencies and professionals in the state through exhibits at numerous professional meetings, including the SC Medical Association annual meeting.
  • Continued partnership with the Medical University of South Carolina Library on the Hands-On-Health grant project funded by the Duke Endowment.
  • Participated in the Association of Academic Health Sciences Libraries LibQual+ research project. The user satisfaction survey was completed by 244 faculty, staff, and students and provided the Library with valuable feedback on its services. The Library is presently reviewing the survey results.
School of Medicine LCME self study/site visit
  • Several Library faculty members served on self-study teams and participated in the site visit.
  • In spite of the "elevator incident" in which the site visit team became stuck in the Library's elevator, the Library received excellent reviews in the initial report from LCME.
I would like to thank the Library faculty and staff for their excellent work this past year. As evidenced by the above accomplishments, they performed at a very high level and helped strengthen the Library's resources and services for our users.

Ruth Riley, Director of Library Services, 733-3353

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Library Hours Change

Beginning with the Fall 2002 semester, the Library's regular hours will be as follows:
Mon. - Fri. 8:00 a.m. - 10:00 p.m.
Saturday 8:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Sunday 1:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m.
This slight reduction in hours will allow the Library to eliminate one graduate assistant position and help balance the Library's reduced budget in 2002-2003. School of Medicine students and faculty will continue to have after-hours access privileges which provide 24x7 access to the Library.
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Evidence-Based Medicine Workshop

At the request of Dr. Ronald Prier, Director, General Residency Training, Neurospychiatry and Behavioral Science, Ruth Riley and Roz McConnaughy presented an Evidence-Based Medicine (EBM) workshop for the psychiatry residents in May.

Roz presented Resources to Support Evidence-Based Practice, one of the monthly training classes offered at the Library that provides an introduction to EBM. Ovid's EBM Reviews, PubMed's Clinical Queries, the National Guideline Clearinghouse, and the TRIP database were some of the resources covered. Four sample patient scenarios, which were derived from some of the residents' experiences this year, were presented.

Ruth demonstrated how to use an EBM approach to search Ovid MEDLINE for therapy articles, and Roz searched EBM Reviews and Clinical Queries to show a different approach. Finally, one lucky resident took a turn at explaining how they would approach finding an answer to one of the patient scenarios.

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Rare Book Appraisal

Ron Bridwell, a local book dealer and appraiser from Bridwell Books, recently appraised the Library's 500-volume collection of rare medical books. Mr. Bridwell examined each book in the collection and, taking into consideration their condition, used standard references to determine their current market value. In his Report on the Rare Book Collection, USC School of Medicine, Mr. Bridwell states:

This collection is very important to the history of medicine in South Carolina because the books contained therein give an indication of the kinds and numbers of medical books in the hands of physicians in the state during the 19th and 20th centuries. With these books available for examination, students of medical history could learn much about the education and training of South Carolina's doctors.

We are very pleased with the results of the appraisal. Below is a list of the most valuable books in the collection.

  • The medical and surgical history of the war of the rebellion. 1870-1888
  • Elements of surgury for the use of students. 1783-1818 (2 volumes)
  • An essay concerning the nature of ailments. 1731
  • Surgical papers by William Stewart Halsted. 1924 (2 volumes)
  • Stereoscopic studies of anatomy. 1929 (10 volumes)
  • Cyclopedia of the practice of medicine. 1874-1881
  • Lecons de physiologie experimentale. 1855-56

For information concerning the donation of books to the collection, contact Laura Kane at 733-3352.

Laura Kane
Head of Cataloging & Acquisitions

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Library Committee News

The Library gratefully acknowledges the service of the following people for their service on the Library Committee during 2001-2002:

  • Margaret Shugart, Neuropsychiatry & Behavioral Science, Chair
  • Janet Fisher, Pharmacology, Physiology & Neuroscience
  • Margaret Hunt, Pathology & Microbiology
  • Laura Kane, Library
  • Suzanne McDermott, Family & Preventive Medicine
  • Alexander McDonald, Pharmacology, Physiology, & Neuroscience
  • Lynn Thomas, Family & Preventive Medicine
  • Phil Watson, Computer & Communication Resources (ex officio)
  • Caleb Wheeler, medical student

Special thanks to Dr. Shugart, Dr. Hunt, and Dr. McDermott for their service as they rotate off the committee. New incoming members for 2002-2003 will be:

  • Holly Lavoie, Cell & Developmental Biology & Anatomy
  • Tu Lin, Internal Medicine
  • Karen Rosati, Library

The Library Committee roster and meeting minutes are available for viewing on the Library's website under Library Information. Please let your representatives know if you have issues that you would like to have discussed by the Library Committee.

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Library Reaches Milestone

Would anyone like to take a guess at the number of book and journal volumes currently housed within the School of Medicine Library? Give up? The number is 100,000! See, print resources DO still exist! Make SCarlit, our online catalog, a routine starting point in your search for health sciences materials.

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Cleaning Rare Books: A Team Effort
by Laura Kane, Head of Cataloging

It's amazing what can be accomplished with a little teamwork and cooperation. The cleaning of the Library's 500-volume rare book collection, a project we thought would take all summer, was completed in only three weeks. A preservation consultant was recently hired, through grant funds, to evaluate the condition of the rare books and provide us with recommendations regarding the long-term care of the collection. Giving the books a thorough cleaning was the first recommendation. We did just that, and, frankly, we're glad it's over with!

So how was it done? Well, the books were fairly soiled, considering most are over 120 years old. They're also pretty fragile. You can't just take a fuzzy duster and run it over the books. Nor can you use an industrial vacuum to suck up dust and dirt. (I can see it now: PHOOP! There goes a delicate page of Hippocrates Upon Air, Water and Situation, copyright 1734 -- gone forever into the bowels of the vacuum. Gives me shudder just thinking about it.) There was also the problem of dust and dormant mold on the books -- both of which can be serious health hazards. What we needed was a high filtration HEPA vacuum cleaner that would capture hazardous particles without releasing them into the air, and that would be powerful yet gentle enough not to damage the delicate books. Such a thing does exist, and it's known in preservation circles as a "Nilfisk." Well, we don't have a Nilfisk. The things cost thousands of dollars. What to do, what to do?

Enter Carol Crawford, Senior Conservator from USC's Conservation Facility. She graciously agreed to let us borrow a Nilfisk from her facility for the project's duration. She also came to the Library to give us a demonstration on how to properly clean rare books. We are indebted to Carol for her generosity and expertise!

Armed with the proper equipment, know-how, and official-looking protective gear, we began the dirty, monotonous task of cleaning the collection, book by book. As always in times of need, many members of the Library staff volunteered to help out. A cleaning schedule was drawn up, and things went smoothly. Now the books are ready to be moved into their new home: the second floor History of Medicine Room.

Roz Cleaning Books
Erica Cleaning Books
Roz McConnaughy (left) and Erica Peake (right) are pictured hard at work cleaning the rare book collection.
Pictures courtesy of Ellen Reynolds.

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Organizational Culture in the Library

As the guest speaker at the Library's July staff meeting, Dr. Libby Baxley, Director of Faculty Development, Office of Continuing Medical Education & Faculty Development, provided a thought-provoking presentation on the concept of organizational culture. Earlier this spring, the Library staff completed a questionnaire about the Library's organizational culture as part of Ruth Riley's participation in the School of Medicine Executive Leadership Institute. Dr. Baxley helped the Library staff review the results of the questionnaire and understand how organizational culture affects the Library's level of solidarity and sociability and its ultimate success in meeting its goals and objectives. Many thanks to Dr. Baxley for taking time to share her expertise with the Library.

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ILLiad Update

In mid-August Interlibrary Loan management will be moving from a paper-based system to a new web-based system called ILL Express! We expect this to streamline ILL processes for individuals requesting service and for the Library staff as well. Following an initial registration procedure, you will no longer have to enter personal information when requesting a document and, after submitting a request, you will have the capability of logging into the system to check your request's progress. Notifying you when materials are available will also be simplified and the new system interfaces smoothly with electronic document delivery systems. You will be required to establish a username and password when you register and you will need to retain that information to access the system. You will still enter the system by clicking on "Interlibrary Loan" on the Library's homepage at If you do not have web access you may complete the initial registration using the computer stations in the Library or you can call Erica Peake at 803-733-3347 for assistance. We can still accept requests submitted through Loansome Doc, Ovid, phone, e-mail or fax, but you must be a registered user. We have enjoyed serving you in the past and we look forward to offering you improved service through the use of ILL Express!

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Staff News
  • Karen Rosati attended the North American Serials Interest Group (NASIG) June 20-23, 2002 at the College of William and Mary. This independent organization promotes sharing of ideas amongst all those involved in serial/journal publishing and acquisition. Each year the meeting hosts over 600 participants from all over the US and Canada at a different college campus.
  • Roz McConnaughy and Sarah Gable exhibited at the South Carolina Medical Association meeting in Charleston, S.C., April 26-27. The exhibition promoted the services of the Center for Disability Resources Library and the National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM). Costs for exhibiting were covered by NNLM.
  • Ruth Riley, Sarah Gable, and Roz McConnaughy attend the 102nd annual meeting of the Medical Library Associaton in Dallas, May 18-23. Ruth has worked for the past year on the planning and coordination of a post-conference symposium, "Leadership Reconsidered: Developing a Strategic Agenda for Leadership in Health Sciences Libraries." The symposium was sponsored by MLA's Leadership and Management Section and the Association of Academic Health Sciences Libraries. As a member of the 2004 National Program Committee, she also attended the NPC's first planning meeting. Roz attended the meeting of the Grants and Scholarships Committee. She also completed a course on Evidence-Based Medicine. Sarah, in her role as Chapter Council Representative of the Southern Chapter of MLA, attended the annual meeting of Chapter Council. She also attended the meeting of the Honors and Awards Committee as Chair of the Majors/MLA Chapter Project of the Year Award Jury.
  • In May, Library faculty attended a Columbia Area Medical Librarians Association (CAMLA) meeting planned by the Chair, Laura Kane. Karen Rosati presented a copy of the "Columbia Medical Libraries Union List" to the group.
  • Roz McConnaughy has been appointed to the Scholarship Jury of the Medical Library Association.
  • 2002-2003 SOM and USC Committee appointments for Library faculty:
    • Sarah Gable: SOM Student Services & Publications Committee.
    • Victor Jenkinson: USC Thomas Cooper Library OPAC Team.
    • Laura Kane: SOM Library Committee, USC Faculty Senate.
    • Ruth Riley: USC Faculty Senate, SOM Admissions Committee, SOM Computer & Communications Resources Advisory Committee, SOM Continuing Medical Education Organization Steering Committee, SOM Curriculum Committee, SOM Executive Committee.
    • Karen Rosati: SOM Library Committee, USC Thomas Cooper Library Electronic Resources Forum.

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Update on Bioinformatics Core of the SC BRIN

The South Carolina Biomedical Research Infrastructure Network (SC BRIN) is rapidly approaching the end of the first year of the three-year grant period. The Library directs the Bioinformatics Core portion of the BRIN. Following is a list of the Core's activities to date:

  • The Core has assumed primary responsibility for the creation and maintenance of the SC BRIN website at The site, available online since December 2001, provides information about SC BRIN, the SC BRIN Competitive Research Program, undergraduate research opportunities, and NIH-funded researchers in South Carolina. You can also find the minutes of the Steering Committee meetings, PowerPoint presentations from SC BRIN Statewide meetings, the SC BRIN "This Week" newsletter, and links to related organizations and a feedback button. A really nice feature is the interactive, clickable map of SC BRIN institutions with a pop-up window for each school that links to the campus website, giving the BRIN contact information and a description of the school.
  • Working with the South Carolina EPSCoR office, the Core co-sponsored the In Silico Biology Symposium on December 10, 2001 at the Medical University of South Carolina.
  • Ruth Riley, Core Director, has met twice with the library directors at the six mentor and mentored institutions to assess the current state of access to key biomedical information databases and electronic journals. Consortial purchase of a number of resources is under consideration, including the Nature weekly and specialized research electronic journals, Science, Springer-Verlag titles, and the American Chemical Society electronic journals. The library directors are currently evaluating quotes from the vendors.
  • The Core sponsored A Field Guide to GenBank and NCBI Molecular Biology Resources. The workshop was held at the University of South Carolina, Columbia on March 12-13, 2002. A total of 60 faculty and students from 14 institutions attended. Following the workshop participants were asked to complete a questionnaire to assess their need for bioinformatics software tools and services.
  • Austin Hughes, Professor of Biological Sciences and Director, Biotechnology/Bioinformatics Institute, University of South Carolina, will work with the Core on options for extending access to GCG software to other SC BRIN institutions as well as creation of a website with links to bioinformatics tools.
  • Plans are underway to offer Making PubMed Work for You, a 3.5 hour hands-on class that will be taught by staff from the National Network of Libraries of Medicine. The class is designed to hone basic searching techniques and to provide instruction in the development of search strategies that take advantage of the PubMed interface to MEDLINE. The Core plans to offer a series of these classes at various SC BRIN campuses.

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Fifth Anniversary of PubMed:
Five Years of Free MEDLINE

During June 2002, the National Library of Medicine marked the fifth anniversary of PubMed providing free MEDLINE via the Internet. When PubMed was launched in June 1997, it received approximately 2 million searches for that month. Today PubMed receives about 1.3 million searches per day from over 200,000 users. Currently 54% of PubMed users search from within the United States whereas the largest group of non-domestic users search from Japan.

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Keep those comments coming!

Fifty-six Library patrons provided very helpful feedback in addition to filling out the LibQual+ Online Survey. We were gratified that the majority of comments were positive as to the Library atmosphere, resources, and staff.

However, as helpful as the positive comments are, the concerns voiced regarding needed resources and services are the points we find most useful for our short- and long-term goals of providing the best service to our patrons.

Most concerns centered around electronic access to information, be it easy access to journals without having to use passwords, learning more about how to find and to use the electronic resources which are available, or simply MORE journal and electronic access, either in general or in specific topics.

The following comments are verbatim from the first ten received, showing needed emphasis on electronic resources and training:

  1. I congratulate the library on its progress in obtaining electronic resources and making them available via the web from wireless points within the school or via Internet proxy connections from elsewhere. I use the electronic resources avidly and would be lost without that type of access now.
  2. I need better training on accessing databases from my office.
  3. Increased electronic access to journals and increased study areas should be the primary goals of the library at this time.
  4. I am pleased with the quantity and diversity of the training classes that the library offers. I find it hard to MAKE time to go to the training classes during the school year though. Summer is a better time for me to take the training classes....
PLEASE contact us if you need general or specific training -- we do make INFORMATION HOUSE CALLS. If you cannot come to us we will come to your office at your convenience. We offer all our training classes during Summer, so please feel free to take them then.

Also, we are looking at increased and more convenient access to our journal collection, despite the budget limitations this year, including purchasing of access where possible to eliminate password entry, and continued active collaborative purchasing of resources with Thomas Cooper Library.

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E-Textbook Spotlight: HARRISON'S ONLINE

Harrison's Online, accessible through the Library's E-Textbooks page under the heading "Internal Medicine," delivers the complete text and illustrations from the 15th edition of Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine. This electronic version is updated daily and offers additional references and links to MEDLINE abstracts. The database is fully searchable and includes late-breaking clinical trial data, updated therapies, concise reviews and editorials, self-assessment questions, related sites, and more.

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Library Departments
Administration (Director, Ruth Riley): 733-3350
Circulation (Head, Victor Jenkinson): 733-3344
Reference (Head, Sarah Gable): 733-3351
Cataloging and Acquisitions(Head, Laura Kane): 733-3352
Serials (Head, Karen Rosati): 733-3355
Systems (Head, Ed Sperr): 733-3347
Interlibrary Loan (Head, Sarah Gable): 733-3347
Center for Disability Resources Library (Head, Roz McConnaughy): 733-3310

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Library Hours and General Information

Monday - Friday 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.
Saturday - 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Sunday - 1 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.

Telephone Number: (803) 733-3344

Fax Number: (803) 733-1509

School of Medicine Library
University of South Carolina
Columbia, SC 29208

Home Page:

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Newsletter Committee

For comments or suggestions regarding the newsletter, please call Laura Kane at 733-3352 or email

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Return to the School of Medicine Library page

Report any problems to Lisa Antley-Hearn,

This page was last updated 26 August 2002.
This page copyright 2002, The Board of Trustees of the University of South Carolina.