Boston College Libraries Faculty Newsletter



O'Neill Library Awarded Full Membership in National Network of Libraries of Medicine

The National Library of Medicine's National Network of Libraries of Medicine has again awarded Full Membership to the Boston College Thomas P. O'Neill Jr. Library for 2011-2016. The O'Neill Library serves as the Nursing Resource Library for the New England region.

Other Resource Libraries in New England include those of Boston University, Brown University, the University of Connecticut, Dartmouth College, Harvard University, Massachusetts General Hospital, Tufts University, the University of Massachusetts Medical School at Worcester, Yale University and the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy.

It is thanks to Mary Pekarkski, Founder of the Boston College Nursing Library in 1947, who had a vision of a comprehensive Nursing Collection, that Boston College has been designated as the New England Resource Library for Nursing since 1968. According to Nursing Professor Mary Ellen Doona's publication, Light on Life: The Nursing Collection, (1990), in 1968 the "BCSON Library....becomes the first SON to be linked with National Library of Medicine data bases." In less than twenty years after its founding, the Nursing Library at Boston College provided "nurses with library resources unequaled in the world" recounted Virginia A. Henderson, noted Nurse Scholar, to Professor Mary Ellen Doona (personal communication).

"The mission of the National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NN/LMĀ®) is to advance the progress of medicine and improve the public health by providing all U.S. health professionals equal access to biomedical information and by improving the public's access to information to enable them to make informed decisions about their health. The Program is coordinated by the National Library of Medicine and carried out through a nationwide network of health science libraries, public Libraries, and information centers..." (Source)

Benefits of membership include training and support from the NN/LM New England Region, networking with health professionals with expertise in health information and opportunities for the funding of projects which support health information. Under the current contract the Regional Medical Library for New England, at the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester, Massachusetts, has developed several Communities of Interest: Health Care Workforce, Healthy Communities, Health Literacy, HealthIT, and eScience.

Responsibilities of a Resource Library include an adequate level of staffing, network connectivity, a health sciences collection, a designated liaison, information services and, especially important, reciprocal lending through DOCLINE. DOCLINE provides funding to O'Neill Library's InterLibrary Loan Department and access to reciprocal borrowing from major institutions such as Harvard University's Countway Library, Yale University, and others.

Wanda Anderson
Nursing Reference Librarian

Anne H. Kenny
Interlibrary Loan Librarian/Manager