Following numerous inquiries from University of Vermont Health Network community hospitals to the UVM Dana Library requesting access to clinical information resources, Health Network leaders collaborated with the library on a survey to determine the information needs of clinicians. The survey was sent to the UVM Medical Center and network community hospitals and distributed to clinicians. The survey purpose was to discover what clinical information resources clinicians currently use, what resources they need but are lacking, and what barriers clinicians encounter when seeking information sources and whether there are differences in access and needs between community hospital clinicians and UVMMC clinicians. The survey was administered during the summer of 2017.
Health care clinicians from 5 community hospitals and the UVM Medical Center participated in the survey. There were 98 respondents from community hospitals and 366 respondents from UVM Medical Center. Physicians comprised 45% of respondents, nurses were 35%, and others, including physicians assistants, were 20% of respondents. A majority of network clinicians seek information resources at least seven times per month for patient care reasons. Both community hospital and UVMMC clinicians used UpToDate, (82% and 62%) in the previous month. Community hospital clinicians used PubMed medical literature database far less often than UVMMC clinicians and 36% of community hospital providers reported lack of access to the PubMed database. More community hospital clinicians reported lack of access to journal articles than UVMMC respondents (32% v. 26%). In terms of barriers, “lack subscription to needed resource” was a barrier for more of community hospital group clinicians than UVMMC, 46% compared to 26%. A more significant barrier for the UVMMC group was “too much information to sift through” (19% vs. 9%).
Based on the survey results, the report proposes strategies for improved access to information resources for Health Network clinicians such as expanded licensing of information resources across all sites, improved network access to technologies, and education of clinicians in identifying and using available clinical information resources.
The report, Health Network Clinicians Use and Need for Clinical Information Sources: Result of a Survey was prepared by Marianne Burke, MA, Director, and Jeanene Light, MLS, Collection Development and Management Librarian, Dana Medical Library, University of Vermont. See the full report HERE.