All posts by Editor

Knowvember: honing your skills

Now we’re at the end of Knowvember I thought it would be a good moment to remind you of all the great resources we have via the Learning Zone and Knowledge Management sections of this blog to help you hone your KM skills or revisit some of the basics. There are resources to help you with searching, synthesis and critical appraisal.

If you want to support your organisation and your colleagues in mobilising evidence and knowledge then remember the NHS Knowledge Mobilisation Framework Postcards and the Knowledge Mobilisation Framework programme are designed for a general audience plus we have the Evidence and Knowledge Self-assessment Tool.

If you haven’t already done so sign up for the CILIP Knowledge & Information Management Special Interest Group (K&IM) and for our new KM community of practice which is a lively discussion group.

David Stewart
Workforce Planning and Development Workstream lead.

STEP: Phase 3 Applying the skills now available!

This final module provides the opportunity for learners to apply all of their learning to the NICE Healthcare Databases Advanced Search (HDAS).

Our ‘Building the Foundations’ modules helped users to assess their level of skill in literature searching, find out more about the resources available and start planning a search.

The second phase of the project ‘Developing the skills’ supported users in applying a range of searching techniques to find relevant articles quickly and easily.

This final module in our programme encourages users to test all of the above by learning about how to apply these skills to HDAS.

All modules are freely available on the eLearning for Healthcare web site, without the need to login, links to the individual modules are included below:

Module 1 Introduction to searching

Module 2 Where do I start searching?

Module 3 How do I start to develop a search strategy?

Module 4 Too many results? How to narrow your search

Module 5 Too few results? How to broaden your search

Module 6 Searching with subject headings

New!!!

Module 7 How to search the Healthcare Databases (HDAS)

Please feel free to place these links on your websites use the attached flier to promote the modules. Don’t forget that we also developed animations to help users apply OR/AND in their searches. These can be included in training sessions or added to your web sites:

Full length animation OR/AND

Short animation OR

Short animation AND

Attached are some FAQs  about the modules which you may find helpful.

If you require further information, please contact the project leads:

Tracey Pratchett, Knowledge and Library Services Manager, Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust tracey.pratchett@lthtr.nhs.uk

Sarah Lewis, Library Services Manager, Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust to sarah.lewis23@nhs.net

Health Literacy: an issue for life

To make good decisions about our health, we need to find, understand, appraise and apply health information.  This is the essence of good health literacy.

 

What is the issue?

Levels of health literacy in England are very low: 43% of working age adults cannot understand textual health information, rising to 61% when a numeracy element is added (1); and 43% adults are unable to calculate paracetamol dosage for a child based on age and weight (2).  Individual health literacy also varies.  If someone has just had a significant diagnosis, then their ability to comprehend information will be reduced.

As people live longer with multiple health conditions, they need to be able to make the treatment choices that are right for them, and to understand how to use self-management techniques or take medications.

 

What role for health library staff?

Working with patients and the public takes different forms within NHS library and knowledge services.  All depend upon library and knowledge services staff having the confidence to see how core skills in finding evidence and appraising sources apply to health information materials for patients and the public.  Supporting the health literacy awareness of colleagues, and identifying information resources of differing levels of complexity, can enable library and knowledge services to have an impact on the way that patient information materials are used.  This supports treatment choice and effective self-management of health conditions.  For this reason, health literacy is a priority for Knowledge for Healthcare work on patient and public information in 2018-2020

Library personnel in education and public library sectors are keen to collaborate on health literacy, as the information literacy and digital literacy skills that they promote feed into health literacy. Whereas good information literacy in education may be seen as a short-term benefit for coursework, health literacy is a life skill.

 

What next?

In 2018-19 we will be offering training on health literacy awareness and accredited “train the trainer” training for health library and knowledge services staff in England, which can be used as the basis of training for NHS staff and partner organisations, including public libraries.

In the meantime, resources are available to increase your awareness of health literacy issues, with tools that you can use.  Working with NHS England, Public Health England and the Community Health and Learning Foundation, Health Education England has developed a health literacy toolkit, including case studies and a “how to” guide https://www.hee.nhs.uk/our-work/health-literacy .

If you have ideas, questions or would like to be involved in shaping health literacy activity, contact Ruth.Carlyle@hee.nhs.uk

Ruth Carlyle

References

  • Rowlands, G. et al. A mismatch between population health literacy and the complexity of health information: an observational study. British Journal of General Practice Jun;65(635):e379-86. doi: 10.3399/bjgp15X685285. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26009533
  • Mayor, S. 2012. Nearly half adults in England don’t understand health information, study indicates. British Medical Journal 345:e8364 https://www.bmj.com/content/345/bmj.e8364