During 2014-15 the Francis Costello Library has continued to provide education, information and evidence to inform management decision-making, research and safe, effective care.

There has been a surge in demand for mediated literature searches undertaken by library staff this year, with almost a quarter (21%) of all search results provided for the purposes of supporting research. In response to user feedback, this year has also seen the launch of our synthesised literature search service, whereby the search results are categorised into levels of evidence and presented to the user with a synthesised summary of the main results. The synthesised literature search service is offered in addition to the standard search service, and has been very well received.  Results from mediated literature search impact assessments are heartening, with 77% stating that results were ‘completely’ relevant and 23% stating ‘mostly’ relevant. One user stated “This information will aid a research project that I am working on within the department, which in turn will help physiotherapists to develop further research and ultimately help patients in the near future.”

We remain committed to our partnerships with colleagues from Higher Education Institutions in the locality. The Library was delighted to facilitate provision of a one-day training session covering both critical appraisal skills and understanding medical statistics, expertly taught by Dr. Jan Herman Kuiper, Lecturer in Biomechanics at Keele University. This training is always well attended by a cross-section of colleagues from across the Trust for whom the need to be able to determine the credibility and authority of published research is of critical importance to evidence-based practice.

We have also been pleased to participate in Musculoskeletal Critically Appraised Topics (MSK CAT) Meetings, a new initiative for Shropshire (emulating a similar group in Staffordshire) which is supported by Keele University and brings together a range of clinicians and other healthcare professionals to ensure that MSK clinical practice is based on the best available evidence. Professional librarian literature searching skills are integral to ensuring that evidence-base is searched comprehensively on the chosen topic. Completed CATS are submitted to the Research Facilitation Group Chair at Keele University for consideration for uploading on the Keele University EBP website.

The Francis Costello Library has also sustained links with Staffordshire University during 2014-15. Activities include the delivery of a group training session on information skills training to students studying orthopaedic nursing at the Trust, and the collation of monograph resources lists to support the University’s teaching on dementia held at the Trust.

Once again the Francis Costello Library has provided quality library services to a very high standard during 2014-15. This has been recognised by the GMC National Training Survey (undertaken by doctors in training) whereby for a further consecutive year we scored well above the national mean and median as a ‘regional outlier’ for library services and access to educational resources. However, the Library does not operate in a vacuum and we are always looking to widen access to library services and resources to staff and students who do not have the time to come to the library. With this in mind, the Deputy Library Services Managers undertook a programme of outreach visits to wards and departments across the Trust. The visits increased the prominence of the Library whilst enabling us to highlight both the expertise and time-saving qualities that we can provide. They also generated follow-up work in the form of literature searches and current alerting requests, and have been particularly instrumental in fostering closer engagement with the nursing workforce at the Trust.

Hence in terms of both core library services and developmental activities the library has continued to thrive over the past twelve months. This is in no small part due to the hard work and dedication of the library team, to whom I extend my thanks for their commitment and positivity.

Scott Rosenberg BSc (Econ), MCLIP

Library Services Manager