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Romanian Medical Libraries The Situation at Present Copyright©2004 Ioana Robu.

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Presentation on theme: "Romanian Medical Libraries The Situation at Present Copyright©2004 Ioana Robu."— Presentation transcript:

1 Romanian Medical Libraries The Situation at Present Copyright©2004 Ioana Robu

2 General background In Romania medical librarianship is represented by: - libraries of medical universities - libraries of large / national research institutes - hospital libraries The most important by far, in terms of resources, development and research, are libraries of medical universities. In Romania higher education in the fields of medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, nursing, midwifery is based in universities of medicine and pharmacy, independent and separate higher education institutions. * Veterinary medicine is under the umbrella of agricultural sciences and is taught in this type of universities

3 The main medical university libraries are: Central Library of the University of Medicine and Pharmacy (U.M.Ph.) Bucharest Central Library of the U.M.Ph. Iasi Central Library of the U.M.Ph. Cluj Central Library of the U.M.Ph. Timisoara Library of the U.M.Ph. Targu-Mures Library of the U.M.Ph. Craiova


5 Libraries, separately located, of Faculties of Medicine Brasov Sibiu Oradea Constanta Arad


7 Libraries of large research institutes mostly located in Bucharest - national institutes - microbiology & virology, genetics, public health etc. but also in large academic centers, e.g. in Cluj the Institute of Public Health, Institute of Oncology, Heart Institute

8 Hospital libraries mostly libraries of the county health boards large hospitals such as Fundeni Hospital in Bucharest, or large county hospitals in Baia Mare, Galati, Ploiesti, Pitesti At present there is no medical library that plays a leading role nationwide, such as a national library of medicine.

9 The Center of Medical Documentation (Bucharest) used to play this role before 1989, but since then it received no or very little funding from the Ministry of Health, much poorer than the Ministry of Education, therefore the library is almost non-existent at present.

10 MEDICAL SCHOOL LIBRARIES Main features General Organization Frame University libraries are special departments of the parent university, i.e. they depend financially and hierarchically on the main university. main decisions are taken by the Senate and the Scientific Council chief librarian responds directly to the Rector (President) or Vice- rector in charge This has a generally positive effect on the development because funding is much more substantial than in the case of hospital or health board libraries. In fact, medical university libraries have also assumed role of regional medical libraries.

11 Collections number of volumes ranging between ~1 million (Bucharest) and 20,000 (Oradea, Arad) before 1990 the number of titles was generally about 10% of the no. of volumes because of the multiple copies for students. However, the library concept as a free bookshop has started to disappear because of (a) increasing price of books and (2) budget limitations. Currently the title / volume ratio foe acquisitions is roughly 1 / 4. foreign language books and periodicals represent on average 20% of the collections, with wide differences according to every library / university policy. gap in the foreign collections between 1976 - 1990 - no hard currency was allocated for buying books or subscribing to journals current subscriptions to foreign periodicals range between 350 titles (Bucharest) and 20-30 (Oradea, Arad). No consortium system or shared acquisition exist as yet.

12 Technology Only 3 of the medical university libraries have an automated library management system (Cluj, Iasi, Tg. Mures), and 3 of the others (Brasov, Sibiu, Constanta). The system is the same, ALICE, from Softlink Europe. All libraries have Internet connections, though the use of Internet in the library differs widely. In general there are great differences regarding implementation of new technologies. This makes it difficult to establish a proper network cooperation between us.

13 Web pages Craiova: Iasi: Cluj: Brasov, Sibiu and Constanta have sites for their main libraries, with access to the online catalogue Targu Mures only provides access to the catalogue directly from the university main page Bucharest and Timisoara medical libraries do not have web sites or page.

14 Services Much more user friendly and user oriented after 1990, with still some old sequelae, e.g. collections are still kept 100% in closed access in some libraries. lending services reading room lending References services - databases : PubMed, Web of Science (at the Ministry of Education), Cochrane (Timisoara), EMC (Encyclopedie Medico-Chirurgicale) Consult (Cluj ). Searching is performed by staff or users - free Internet access in Cluj, Iasi, Brasov, Sibiu

15 Services (continued) Information is sought for research and teaching (90% proportion) Libraries do not have a section for consumer / patient information Document supply / ILL - a mutual agreement system exists between all the academic libraries at a national level. Where possible it is done electronically, Copyright law permits. Cluj is a member of the DOCLINE system Romania still takes advantage of its status as a poor country, benefitting from HINARI t ( established by WHO as well as free access to a number of resources (e.g. DynaMed etc.) that grant free access to developing economies.

16 Users Patrons are students, university teaching and research staff. Currently Cluj U.M.Ph has 4500 students and 600 staff. Residents, doctors, nurses outwith the university also use the library heavily. Total number of registered users for Cluj is 7752. User education: library induction tours, training for database and Internet searching In Cluj: course integrated in the curriculum (optional 1st year undergraduate level, and Postgraduate course of 2 weeks - paid)

17 Buildings / location Traditional, old, not designed for open access or computer facilities. Refurbishment and refurnishing have been performed after 1990.

18 Buildings (continued) The only new medical library building that is being constructed is in Cluj, though there is still a struggle for space.

19 Location (continued) Space is always a problem ! In the case of medical university libraries there is usually a central (main) library and a fairly large number of small department branches (staffed by a member of the respective department), e.g. Bucharest UMPh Library has 95 branches, Iasi has 90 branches, Cluj has 40 branches

20 Budgets Large discrepancies regarding university policies and budgeting. No fixed amount or percentage is budgeted directly from the government for libraries. It is at the discretion of every university. Self-financing schemes are now possible and granted legally since 1997. Paid services: library cards fines for overdue loans photocopying, printing, scanning etc. renting out equipment bibliographies document supply (full text articles)

21 Library staff and the profession Only after 1991 have Schools of Librarianship and Information Science been reinstated. LIS schools exist in Bucharest, Cluj, Sibiu, Oradea, Targoviste, Timisoara Before 1990 librarians were recruited among people with various backgrounds: languages, history, biology, chemistry, mostly teachers who could not find a teaching job in a larger town. Since 1997 new librarians positions can only be filled by persons who have an academic degree (college or university) in Library and Information Science. No special qualifications (health sciences background) are needed for medical librarianship. Continuing education courses in mainstream librarianship are offered in Bucharest and Cluj (British Council), but there is no system of postgraduate professional accreditation.

22 Cooperation Medical Section - Romanian Association of Education Libraries (ABIR) - meet once a year on the occasion of the national conference. Travelling is expensive, gathering representatives from all the medical libraries is difficult. Projects at a national level: RoBiblioMed - national database of Romanian medical periodicals (~ 70 titles, of which only 11 are indexed in MEDLINE), using WWWISIS - shared online access to periodicals - negotiations underway for next year with Ovid, Proquest and Elsevier.

23 International cooperation Each library has established their own links. Cluj UMPh Library translation license from the NLM for MeSH Sister library with Duke University Medical Center Library (North Carolina) and Ruth Lily Medical Library at Indianapolis Involvement in European projects (PHARE, LEONARDO) at the level of the Ministry of Education and the National Library Association


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