October 01, 2001


 Veterinary medical librarians: your link to quality information

Posted Sept. 15, 2001

October is National Medical Librarians Month—a great time to celebrate veterinary medical libraries and recognize the many services they offer veterinarians.

Libraries contain a wealth of information that can help you:

  • find quick reference information
  • conduct literature searches to find journal articles on clinical topics
  • obtain photocopies of journal articles
  • receive advice on Web-accessible databases and search options
  • find and evaluate quality Web sites
  • acquire book and audiovisual loans

How often do you need copies of journal articles quickly and don't know how to get them, or encounter clinical cases for which you would really like to find out "what the literature says" about the treatment of certain conditions?

At other times you may be seeking specific information, such as when parvovirus was discovered, or need to do more extensive research in preparation for giving a talk or writing a paper. Although there is an increasingly accessible reservoir of material on the Web, are you too pressed for time between cases to sort out the tangle that may be of uncertain value?

Professional librarians are minutes away to assist you. These information experts have master's degrees or other advanced credentials, have specialized research and searching skills, and possess considerable experience and expertise in the literature of veterinary medicine and related subjects.

Armed with this knowledge, librarians at the 32 academic veterinary medical libraries in the United States and Canada are ready, willing, and able to locate information, find journal articles, and supply photocopies to assist you in your practice. These libraries contain a wealth of information that is useful to alumni and other veterinarians.

A list of libraries is published in the annual AVMA Directory & Resource Manual, beginning on page 343 of the 2001 edition, or may be found at: http://duke.usask.ca/~ladd/vet_libraries.html. Policies, services, and charges vary at each institution, so it's best to check with the library prior to submitting requests for information or photocopy services. Some offer formal, fee-based services. You may even be able to search the online catalogs at their Web sites.

In addition, while they may be more specialized, resources at medical schools, primate research centers, zoos, and some public and college libraries are worth investigating. Also don't forget to contact the library at AVMA headquarters at (800) 248-2862, ext. 245 for copies of articles from journals published by the AVMA.

To access these valuable services, simply contact the veterinary library of your choice. For example, it could be the library closest to you or at the college from which you earned your veterinary degree. Requests are welcome by mail, phone, fax, or e-mail. These libraries are also open for on-site access during regular hours.

Celebrate veterinary medical libraries and librarians as your link to knowledge.