News from the Libraries

News from the Libraries

Earth Day and UT Health Science Center Green Initiatives in April

SAWS Water People will be on campus for Earth Day activities, planned for April 20-21.

The Green Initiatives Committee of the UT Health Science Center is planning events on April 20-21 to help spread the word about “green” practices that will promote sustainability on our campus and at home.  Activities will include a noon presentation on April 20 from NuRide, which offers rewards to members who walk, bike, carpool or use public transportation to get to work.

On April 21, 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m., a Go Green Fair will be held in the Pestana Lecture Hall Foyer. It will feature exhibitors including SAWS, San Antonio River Authority (SARA), State of Texas Alliance for Recycling (STAR), VIA, and Solar San Antonio, among others. These exhibitors will be available to explain how everyone can promote green practice.

At the Go Green Fair, librarians from the Briscoe Library will demonstrate the National Library of Medicine’s Environmental Health & Toxicology databases. The library has recently revived its Green Team.  One of the team’s  immediate objectives is to prepare an interactive, 3-D exhibit on ways to protect the environment and conserve energy.  The Green Team promotes the concept of “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.”  One of the initiatives in the works is installation of a box for collecting used batteries in the Briscoe Library, a collaboration with the Office  of Environmental Health and Safety. More information is available on our website, or check out our page on Facebook.

The first Earth Day was celebrated on April 22, 1970, and has been observed on this date every year since. Earth Day is now observed globally to raise awareness about environmental issues and impact public attitudes.  On campus, Health Science Center students in 2007 proposed to the administration some instances where the university could reduce energy use and save money.  The Health Science Center created a Green Initiatives Committee to develop recommendations for reducing the university’s impact on the environment while also cutting costs.  On April 22, 2009, the campus celebrated Earth Day by planting trees on the lawn at the corner of Floyd Curl and Medical Drive.  In the weeks following that event, recycling sorting bins were installed in buildings all over campus.  The Briscoe Library was one of the first buildings to take delivery of the recycling bins. A Go Green website was created that now includes the location of recycling bins on the Long Campus, and a growing list of accomplishments and plans for green initiatives and projects on Health Science Center campuses. One of these projects is installation of solar panels at the South Texas Research Facility, which is currently under construction.

For more information, visit the Go Green website ( or to keep up with developments, “Like” the Go-Green-UT Health Science SA page on Facebook.

Jonquil D. Feldman
Director of Briscoe Library Services

Medical Library Association Webcast

Shifting Skills to Navigate the Changing Horizon:  Finding Our Way in the New Biomedical Research and Health Care Environments

  • Wednesday, April 20, 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.
  • Regional Academic Health Center Room 1.132
  • 5th Floor Briscoe Library— Howe Conference Room

Program Objectives: Provide an overview of translatonal science, e-science and health information resources in electronic health records, including the related trends and issues affecting information professionals Identify skills that information professionals need to work with researchers, information technology professionals, clinicians and community partners in these environments Learn about community engagement in translational science research and roles for clinicians and information professionals in this arena Address meaningful use of health information by patients accessing their electronic health records, as required by recent legislation to facilitate quality improvement at the point of care The Webcast carries 1.5 continuing education credits, with an additional 1.5 credits possible through participation in wraparound sessions.

Register to view the webcast

For additional information, contact Susan Hunnicutt, Special Projects Librarian,

Eric Willman named 2011 Outstanding Student

Congratulations to Eric Willman, Systems Librarian at the Briscoe Library, who will receive the 2011 Outstanding Student in Information Science Award from the University of North Texas Department of Library and Information Sciences at a UNT’s Honors Day in April.

Eric received the Master of Science in Information Science from UNT in May, 2010.

History of medicine lecture series continues: Beyond Bugs and Drugs: Infectious Disease Discovery and Epidemiology

Navajo Painting

The deer mouse, an important carrier of hantavirus disease, depicted in Navajo art. Photo by permission, Ben Muneta, M.D.


Thursday, April 28, 12:00 noon to 1:00 p.m.

Howe Conference Room, Briscoe Library

In May of 1993, members of the Navajo Nation in the Fours Corners area of the United States were stricken by a deadly pneumonia of unknown cause.  In less than two months, investigators from the CDC determined the infection was due to a new virus related to the Hantaan virus of Asia.  The infection was spread to humans by exposure to rodent excreta. 

The Four Corners area had a population explosion of rodents in 1993 due to an El Nino climate event, which caused an abnormally high level of precipitation.  Subsequently, it was discovered that many other species of Hantaviruses were lurking in the rodents of the New World. 

The spring lecture series, Beyond Bugs and Drugs: Infectious Disease Discovery and Epidemiology, sponsored by the Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library and the Briscoe Library, continues on April 28.  In the third talk of the series Dr. Gregory Anstead of the School of Medicine, director of the Immunosuppression and Infectious Diseases clinics of the South Texas Veterans Healthcare System, will explore the rapid discovery of the etiology and reservoir ecology of Hantavirus as evidence of the power of epidemiology and molecular diagnostics. 

As always, the event is free and open to everyone.  Please bring your lunch and join us!

For more information about the spring lecture series, contact Pennie Borchers, Special Collections Librarian, at

Library classes for April and May

All library classes are free and open to all. Advance registration is appreciated but not required. If you would like to request a class or schedule a consultation at any HSC campus, please contact the library at (210) 567-2450 or email

If you would like to request a special class or orientation for your department or group at other days/times, please contact us!  To register for a class or to read class descriptions, visit the online class schedule.

When you register for a library class, your registration confirmation email includes a file that you can save as an appointment into your electronic calendar.

San Antonio – Briscoe Library

  • Ovid Tips & Tricks, Getting Started with MEDLINE: April 6, 2011, 9:00 am – 10:30 am, LIB 2.011
  • Knowledge Pursuit: Finding Online Learning Opportunities – Technology Brown Bag: April 13, 2011, 12:00 noon – 1:00 pm, Howe Conference Room
  • Introduction to RefWorks: April 20, 2011, 10:00 am – 11:00 am, LIB 2.011
  • Using EBSCO CINAHL to Locate Nursing & Allied Health Information: April 21, 2011, 2:00 pm – 3:30 pm, LIB 2.011
  • Library Basics: April 22, 2011, 9:00 am – 10:00 am, LIB 2.011
  • Ovid Tips & Tricks, Getting Started with MEDLINE: May 2, 2011, 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm, LIB 2.011
  • Introduction to PubMed: May 6, 2011, 10:00 am – 11:00 am, LIB 2.011
  • Introduction to RefWorks: May 11, 2011, 9:30 am – 10:30 am, LIB 2.011

Harlingen and Edinburg – Ramirez Library and Edinburg RAHC

  • Customizing PubMed with MyNCBI: April 5, 2011, 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm, Edinburg – RAHC Building room 1.202
  • Customizing PubMed with MyNCBI: April 7, 2011, 12 noon – 1:00 pm, Ramirez Library, Harlingen room 1.132
  • Managing PubMed Search Results: May 3, 2011, 4;00 pm – 5:00 pm, Edinburg – RAHC Building room 1.20
  • Customizing PubMed with MyNCBI: May 5, 2011, 12 noon – 1:00 pm, Ramirez Library, Harlingen room 1.132

Katie Prentice
Head of Education and Information Services

Study looks at recent pricing trends for scholarly journals

Allen Press, a scholarly journal publisher, has released its 2010 Study of Subscription Prices for Scholarly Journals.  Price trends for journals were based on a group of approximately 250 publications appearing in the Allen Press Buyer’s Guide to Scientific, Medical, and Scholarly Journals TM.

Among the findings outlined in the report:

  • Since 1989, prices for US society journals have increased, on average, 7.3% annually.
  • For each of the past three years, average price increases for US-based journals have hovered around 6%, more than a full percentage point lower than the historical average.
  • The average price increase of non-US-based journals was nearly a full percentage point higher than US-based journals.
  • Most of the titles in the study are peer-reviewed journals.  Prices of peer-reviewed titles increased by an annual average of 6.5% from 2009 to 2011.
  • In all years since 1989, increases in journal prices are higher than the increase in the Consumer Price Index.

The report details efforts by library organizations and libraries to control costs due to increased subscription costs and diminishing library budgets.  It also documents the Medical Library Association’s efforts to assemble a list of publishers that have frozen 2011 prices at 2010 levels.

Download the free full report

Rajia Tobia
Executive Director of Libraries

Website showcases emerging mobile technologies for health care professionals

iMedicalApps is an online resource developed by a team of physicians and medical students to provide current reviews of emerging mobile medical technology and applications.  The creators of iMedicalApps have been interviewed multiple times by American Medical News, and the Web site has been identified by Cochrane as an evidence based and trusted Web 2.0 site.  It has also been featured in the Annals of Emergency Medicine and the Journal of Surgical Oncology.  Among recent posts that may be of interest:

Susan Hunnicutt
Special Projects Librarian

National Public Health Week is April 4-11

National Public Health Week (NPHW) is April 4-10.  This year’s theme is “Safety is NO Accident,” and the focus of the week will be on educating citizens about preventing injuries at home, at work, and in the community.

The American Public Health Association (APHA), organizer of NPHW, develops a national campaign to educate the public, policy-makers and practitioners about issues related to each year’s theme. APHA creates comprehensive planning, organizing and outreach materials that can be used to raise awareness.

The National Public Health Week Web site encourages assessment of home, workplace, and community spaces for easily-remedied hazards such as:

  • Maintaining fire alarms
  • Changing burnt-out light bulbs
  • Covering electrical outlets in homes with small children
  • Understanding national and state laws on workplace safety
  • Joining the neighborhood watch association.

The Libraries have created an exhibit showcasing the public health programs offered at the UT Health Science Center.  The exhibit is currently on display outside the Briscoe Library on the Long Campus.

Lydia Fletcher
Outreach Library Assistant

Safeguarding the library’s collection: Security exit procedure

Library staff are charged to safeguard the library collections.  The Briscoe Library exit gate is designed to detect the removal of library materials.  An alarm will sound if any library item passes through the gate.  To avoid the alarm sounding, materials should be passed to Circulation Desk staff prior to walking through the exit gate.  Circulation staff will then return the materials after checking the items’ borrowed status. 

If the alarm sounds, you will be stopped by Circulation staff and asked to check for library materials in your possession.  This ensures that items are properly checked out.  We hope that this will reduce the number of overdue and missing books. 

Library staff wants to be sure that materials are available for the widest possible use.  Thank you for assisting us in preserving our library collection.  If you have any suggestions or concerns regarding this procedure, please contact Chris Gaspard at or (210) 567-2429.

Library on the go: Mobile AccessMedicine

Another mobile-optimized database has been added to the Libraries’ mobile website: Mobile AccessMedicine. Resources available through Mobile AccessMedicine include:

  • Harrison’s Online (Harrison’s Principles of Internal Medicine)
  • Current Medical Diagnosis and Treatment
  • Current Practice Guidelines in Primary Care
  • Diagnosaurus

To use Mobile AccessMedicine, first set up an AccessMedicine Personal Profile; Health Science Center students, faculty and staff can use this link to do so.  Once an account has been created, simply go to on your mobile device and log in with your Personal Profile username and password.

Be sure to check out the other handy resources on the Libraries’ mobile Web site, under the “Mobile Databases” link.

Luke Rosenberger
Director of Library Technology and Historical Collections