Consumer Health Information Champions

After a regional scan funded by the Jewish Healthcare Foundation (JHF) identified community libraries as important sources of consumer information about healthcare conditions, JHF started the Consumer Health Information Champions Fellowship. Using the process improvement principles of PRHI's Perfecting Patient CareSM (PPC), the Fellowship was a multi-session program designed to equip community librarians with the specialized skills needed to assist patrons in researching consumer health information. As part of the program, librarians received the 12 hours of online training needed to meet the Medical Library Association’s requirements for certification as consumer health information specialists. The Fellowship also helped librarians increase their awareness of different types of patrons seeking health information and improved their comfort level in discussing difficult health issues with them.

Using the information gleaned throughout the Fellowship, the Librarian Fellows were able to update their library systems’ consumer health database and related web information, design a staff training module regarding health information, and develop community presentations related to accessing health information.

In the first Fellowship, librarians from the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh were exposed to experts in the healthcare field, toured various medical libraries and spoke with medical librarians, and learned relationship-building skills. Most importantly, the Fellowship helped the librarians expand their knowledge of the types and sources of reliable information on healthcare providers, health conditions and healthcare quality.  Due to the success of the first program, a second Fellowship was replicated with a group of librarians from the Allegheny County Library Association.


Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh

Holly Anderton (Main)
Candace Kail (Main)
Thomas Barnes (Main)
Julianna Kuchta (Carrick)
Jessica Clark (Brookline)
Barbara Lawler (Allegheny Regional)
Ian Eberhardt (Hill District)
Kathy Maron-Wood (Main)
Chris Gmiter (Sheraden/West End)
Mary Ann McHarg (Hazelwood)
Linda Gmiter (LBPH)
Charmaine Mozlack (Main)
Denise Graham (Homewood)
Mark Russell (Squirrel Hill)
Danielle Greenburg (Brookline)
Lydia Scott (Southside)
Ryan Hughes (Main)
Marian Streiff (Mt. Washington)

Allegheny County Library Association

Ann Andrews
Lauri Ann West Memorial Library

Susan McClellan
Shaler North Hills Library

Ronda Dibas
Community Library of Allegheny Valley

Tom Muldowney
Mt. Lebanon Public Library

Tracy Happe
Monroeville Public Library

Mary Lee Resnick
Northland Public Library

Megan Heady
Brentwood Library

Antoinette Ruta
Avalon Public Library

Denise Ignasky
Whitehall Public Library

Lynn Schneider
Sewickley Public Library

Maria Joseph
Moon Township Public Library

Dustin Shilling
Northern Tier Library

Charity Leonette
Allegheny County Library Association