Category Archives: Workforce Planning and Development

Update from HEE LKS Leads

A few points of feedback for LKS managers and teams from the meeting of the HEE Library and Knowledge Service Leads Group on 26 February:

  • Developing and making the case for an equitable funding model for NHS LKS is a current high priority. We hope to be able to engage with Trusts on our proposals during this year.
  • With the Department of Health, we are currently negotiating extension of the CLA Licence Plus for the NHS in England for a further five years from April 2018.
  • With NICE, we are progressing re-procurement of a new national core content collection from April 2019, and also exploring options for extended collaborative purchasing of e-resources. Our thinking informed by feedback from the 90% plus LKS teams who responded to our survey and provided information about local investment in e-resources – thank you!
  • Work continues on development of the new national LKS quality assurance process, which will feature a much reduced number of quality standards with associated evidence requirements, and graded levels of attainment. The process will be piloted by a small number of LKS this year.
  • Building on the work to date within the Knowledge for Healthcare Public and Patient Information work stream, it has been agreed that the role of health librarians in supporting health literacy will be the focus of this work stream for the next two years. A blog post about this will follow shortly.
  • The Workforce Planning and Development work stream has identified CPD priorities for the LKS workforce for the next two years, drawing on feedback from recent development needs analyses and a review of strategic priorities. Meanwhile, we are submitting a response about the healthcare LKS workforce to the consultation on ‘Facing the Facts, Shaping the Future’ (the draft national workforce strategy for health and care for England to 2027).
  • Three more STEP literature searching e-learning modules are now available, and a new set of knowledge management e-learning modules are in development, with the design of the knowledge management postcards being refreshed to match.
  • More #AMillionDecisions social media cards are being created, featuring quotes about the role of library knowledge specialists from senior national NHS leads. An HEE LKS presence at June’s NHS Confederation Conference will provide a further opportunity for high level advocacy, and we are delighted that a number of Knowledge for Healthcare-related papers have been accepted for this year’s HLG and EAHIL conferences.

If you have comments or queries relating to this bulletin, please contact your HEE LKS Lead.

Positive feedback for the Synthesising and Summarising Courses

Well over 250 library and knowledge specialists attended part or all of a training bundle on synthesising and summarising.  The courses combined face to face training with follow up activities and 117 people have responded to our survey to gauge its impact. Synthesising and Summarising courses were run in every region of the English NHS during 2016 and 2017.

Knowledge for Healthcare reported that “users value literature searches and synthesised, pre-packaged information” including “briefings that present synthesised evidence”.  Hence, the strategy identified that there “needs to be a greater focus on synthesising evidence” and that the healthcare library and knowledge workforce required enhanced skills in this area. These courses were delivered in response to this training need and were designed to develop the techniques and practice necessary to be able to produce reviews and research syntheses

The courses consisted of initial one-day sessions led by one of research and information skills trainer Tim Buckley Owen or Anne Gray, Knowledge Officer at Arden & GEM Commissioning Support Unit, followed by three half-day problem-based sessions, spread over three months, at which attendees prepared syntheses and summaries of documents in advance, and shared  problems they had encountered, and their solutions.

The Course Impact Evaluation

Feedback from the impact evaluation was very positive.  Attendees reported improved confidence, enhanced skills and a better service to end users.  For some, the course informed service redesign and helped deliver a more meaningful impact on their organisations.  The majority of attendees felt they were able to put some of the skills developed into practice.

The impact evaluation provides ample evidence of success.  The full report can be read here.  Attendees described how the course supported organisational development:

This course has had a significant impact on the library services presence at a senior level. The summary provided to a senior ward manager led to change in the wording of text message appointment reminders sent out to patients to reduce ‘Did not Attends’. On the back of this success it led to further requests for summaries some of which have been presented at MDT meetings.”

and how it allowed libraries to increase their presence, and demonstrate the impact of their expertise

I have gained new skills and confidence and improved our evidence search service. This has had a particularly positive impact on our Embedded Librarian Service and the feedback from users has helped to demonstrate the positive impact of library services”.

No further courses are scheduled at present. However, watch this space.

We encourage attendees to share what you have learned, and to enhance further these skills. Please continue to feedback on how you are using these skills and how it feeds into the impact of library and knowledge services. And how will you keep synthesising and summarising skills live and fresh? One way might be to form local action learning sets in a service or services. Feed back in the comments below, or to your LKS regional lead.

Taking a Forward View

“Knowledge specialists can play a pivotal role in mobilising knowledge and evidence effectively” so states the article Forward view: advancing health library and knowledge services in England in the March 2018 edition of the Health Information and Libraries Journal.  As part of a series of articles exploring international perspectives and initiatives, new directions for health library and knowledge services in England are considered.

Sue Lacey Bryant and colleagues explore how we will meet user expectations and examine access to digital content and services.  The ongoing need for information skills training and provision of attractive learning spaces for collaboration and knowledge sharing is acknowledged.  Steps already being taken to empower patients and the public are described including collaboration with the voluntary sector and public libraries to facilitate access to high-quality patient information.   As traditional tasks around evaluating and targeting evidence to update colleagues becomes increasingly mechanised so time is released for knowledge specialists to take on more embedded roles encouraging knowledge and learning to be shared more effectively.  Funding and quality are discussed and the shift in focus from counting to demonstrating the impact of services on organisational objectives and patient outcomes is explained.  An exploration of the work taking place to develop the workforce who will deliver the transformed library and knowledge services of the future is included.

In conclusion it is predicted that there is “a bright future in which librarians’ expertise is used to mobilise evidence, manage and share knowledge, support patients, carers and families, optimise technology and social media and provide a keystone for improved patient care and safety”.

To find out more read the full article. (CILIP HLG Members can access the journal as part of their membership entitlement)

Lacey Bryant, S. et al. 2018. Forward view: advancing health library and knowledge services in England.  Health Information and Libraries Journal, Volume 35, Issue 1, p. 70–77