Landscape of health sciences librarian-mediated search services

Danielle M. Westmark, Teresa L. Hartman, Cynthia M. Schmidt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: Health librarians have traditionally provided mediated searches to support patient care, education and research. Objectives: This study aims to discover the types of search result formats used by health science libraries, determine current practice among health science libraries (types of requesters served, fees, deduplication, turnaround time and citation manager use) and uncover innovative methods for providing search results. Methods: An online survey was distributed to the MEDLIB-L, ExpertSearching, MidContinental Chapter of the Medical Library Association and ICON listservs and through direct email to selected Association of Academic Health Sciences Libraries reference and education librarians. Results: Librarians affiliated with 127 institutions from 11 countries (including the USS) and 36 USS states and territories responded. One hundred and forty-two of the total 150 analysed responses provided information on full-text access, and 81 of those 142 responses (57%) indicated that the institutions' link-resolver links were included in search results provided to the requester. The survey responses provide information on literature search services regarding turnaround time, use of a citation managers, fees and deduplication. Conclusion: With the developing landscape of citation managers and the tools offered, these data can be used as a benchmark for librarians who are considering evaluating or modifying their search service delivery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)365-376
Number of pages12
JournalHealth Information and Libraries Journal
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2022


  • United States of America (USA)
  • libraries, health science
  • libraries, hospital
  • libraries, medical
  • literature searching
  • mediated searching
  • surveys

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Informatics
  • Library and Information Sciences
  • Health Information Management


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