Background: The role of the clinical librarian (CL) is to provide patient-centered information to clinicians at point of care. The CL attends bedside rounds, weekly reports, and conferences, and provides evidence-based information and literature in real-time. There is very little literature looking at the role and experience of a clinical librarian within the intensive care unit (ICU). The purpose of this lightning talk is to describe the role, experience, and value of a CL embedded in an intensive care unit.
Description: For almost two decades our library has been collaborating with clinical units and involving embedded CLs throughout the hospital. Since 2009, a CL has been the primary library point person for all clinicians in the ICU. Currently, the author attends bedside rounds once a week to complement the services already provided to the critical care team. The CL addresses questions that arise during case discussions, and proactively provides information to the clinicians on topics being discussed. The librarian is equipped with a smart phone and provides professionally vetted high-quality information within minutes using PubMed and a variety of point of care mobile applications.
Conclusion: The embedded CL provides invaluable support and resources to the critical care team. In multiple cases the information provided by the CL to the critical care team led to a change in a patient’s treatment plan or widened the circle of possible diagnoses to be assessed. With the support of library and hospital administration, creating a CL for the ICU is a vital asset to both the library and its parent institution.