Ryan Rafferty, MLIS
Visiting Instructor & Regional Health Sciences Librarian
Library of the Health Sciences-Urbana
University of Illinois at Chicago
The University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) Library of the Health Sciences (LHS) has provided access to DynaMed for several years as one of the databases through our EBSCOHost package. Conversations about upgrading to DynaMed Plus (DMP) with the Isabel differential diagnosis generator began in the winter of 2016-17, led by health sciences bibliographer Estelle Hu. The UIC Library hosted a trial of DMP w/Isabel in January 2017. The trial was advertised on the Library’s Databases A-Z list in the “New/Trial Databases” section, via email to select user groups and through word of mouth at reference and/or instructional sessions. Usage statistics and anecdotal evidence showed the upgraded database and differential diagnosis tool were used and positively viewed by users. Estelle also received feedback from the health sciences liaisons, who also had positive experiences with the resources. The decision to upgrade to DMP w/Isabel was made in May 2017. Estelle left the university in June 2017. Ryan took on Estelle’s responsibilities later in the summer and the rollout of the upgraded and new tool began at the same time.
Ryan received marketing materials from vendor representatives Alicia Pike and Dawn Bonsor in June 2017. Materials included files with logos, promotional flyers, and boilerplate promotional email language, all customized for UIC access to the tools and easily adapted for our promotional channels. Material on how to incorporate the tool into the clinical workflow was also provided. The paperwork to accomplish the upgrade was completed by August 2017 and access was turned on. New links on the library website and in the many LibGuides the liaisons have created were added for the new resource. Customized flyers were posted at service points at several library locations. Targeted emails with information about the resource that included links for access were sent to students, faculty, and staff of the health sciences colleges the LHS serves. Liaisons were encouraged to demonstrate the new resource whenever pertinent. Instructional sessions were offered in person and online that introduced the purpose, interface, and functionality of the upgraded resource throughout the fall semester and again in the spring. Statistics showing widespread adoption and interactions with users indicate the rollout was successful and the new resource is meeting users’ expectations and needs.
Successfully rolling out point-of-care resources is a challenge we all face. Our multichannel approach for DMP and Isabel resulted in not only an initial rollout success, but also ongoing high levels of use and user satisfaction. Although all environments are different, using the following types of strategies can enhance adoption success:
- Posting customized flyers in key areas focusing on what the tool is, why/when to use it, and how to use it at your institution.
- Making the tool available in as many online locations as possible on library resource pages, physician portals, EMR integrations, mobile access, etc.
- Sending multiple focused emails to all interested constituents.
- Providing multiple, short instructional options for users either live or via web.
- Taking advantage of resources/materials offered or provided by vendors.
- Keeping a constant buzz around the resource with liaisons promoting at every opportunity.
- Embedding it into all new student, resident, and physician training activities and workflows.
Using this multichannel approach worked for our rollout and ongoing successful deployment and, hopefully, it can be helpful in your next deployment!