The current changes in our modern society have resulted in various changes, including how information is presented on digital platforms and in books. When one does not have the required skills in conducting proper research both on the diverse library and digital platforms, they may end up not digging deeper into finer details concerning a given topic (Perrier et al., 2014). When analyzing the healthcare sector, different evidence-based studies have been conducted concerning the management of certain medical conditions and how healthcare professions should behave. However, when one does not know how to conduct proper online and offline research, they may lose on essential points (Perrier et al., 2014). When searching for health-related resources in the library, one must use the relevant skills and patience. When one uses only the digital platforms in researching, they may lose out on high-quality information provided on the different library databases. With the healthcare sector undergoing numerous advancements, relying on one platform to obtain information may be misleading. As a result, having the relevant library research strategies and digital literacy will lay a foundation for any health profession to obtain high-quality information (Perrier et al., 2014). The ACRL framework is one of the tools that can aid in redefining information literacy. This essay, therefore, seeks to use the ACRL framework in expounding on how information can be produced and valued through the proper use of library research strategies and digital literacy in healthcare.
Library Research Strategies, Digital Literacy and Healthcare.
Library search Strategies
Libraries are an integral aspect of research since they help in contributing to research and development. They achieve this through the provision of e-content, an aspect that researchers can fully exploit. However, with the current technological advances, most individuals, including the healthcare sector, have sidelined using libraries in finding articles that have crucial information regarding the management of diverse conditions, including how to prevent the occurrence of medication errors, burnout among nurses and falls among patients (Whitney et al., 2017). Based on this information, it is evident that libraries have diverse information that researchers can easily access. With the current evolutions, libraries have also revolved by responding to the enthusiasm of new opportunities and challenges associated with locating high-quality information. Apart from offering content, libraries are actively pursuing opportunities that can add value to an institution. With the values associated with libraries, individuals searching for information should also possess relevant skills and strategies such as knowing the keywords. Without having the relevant library research strategies, one may get articles or information not relevant to a given context (Whitney et al., 2017).
Digital literacy is a concept that is gaining recognition in modern society. It denotes one having the relevant skills needed to learn, live and work in a society that constantly relies on digital technologies in communication (Buckingham, 2016). Some of the digital technologies include internet platforms, social media and mobile devices. According to the American Library Association, digital literacy notes that for one to be digitally literate, they must have the ability to effectively use diverse communication and information technologies in finding, evaluating, creating and communicating information that needs cognitive and technical skills (Buckingham, 2016). Digital literacy has been built to help expand the role of social science research; as a result, digital literacy should be considered a broad path of a knowledge base.
Healthcare is an important aspect that is tasked with marinating and improving the health of a population through preventing, diagnosing and treating different conditions. To effectively manage different conditions, the healthcare sector constantly relies on information technologies to securely use and share information (Whitney et al., 2017). Developing secure and electronic health records for most healthcare institutions and providing different types of information when needed can help improve the quality of care delivered to different patients.
The link between the three topics.
Library search strategies, digital literacy and healthcare are related in diverse ways. When analyzing the healthcare sector, it constantly relies on evidence-based practices in the management of different conditions. The libraries help fulfill this role since they serve as a primary resource for providing healthcare practitioners with these vital resources. When analyzing the current libraries, they are generally perceived to be influential based on their experience in gathering high-quality health data that different healthcare sectors can use to bring various health literacy interventions. According to the existing strategies, approximately two-thirds of the U.S population resides near public libraries furnished with a wide range of information. Subsequently, the United States has numerous high-quality digital libraries that offer every person, including health practitioners with access to web-connected devices that allow them to search for evidence-based articles that suit their preference (Kuek & Hakkennes, 2020). However, every person using a library must have relevant search strategies and skills. Having the relevant skills and library search strategies will lay a foundation for identifying, organizing and providing easy access to high quality and understandable health information that can be used in scaling up health literacy interventions (Kuek & Hakkennes, 2020).
On the other hand, healthcare and digital literacy are also related in various ways. In healthcare, digital health literacy involves one’s ability to seek, find and appraise health information from the diverse electronic resources and uses the gained information in addressing a given health challenge (Kuek & Hakkennes, 2020). Since the healthcare sector is constantly evolving, healthcare professions need to be equipped with the latest technologies in the health sector, such as telemedicine, EMR, clinical decision support tools, and clinic analytics. The healthcare sector is filed with constantly evolving (Kuek & Hakkennes, 2020). As a result, having the required skills to research different digital platforms and library databases will lay a foundation for collecting high-quality data that can be used to enhance health literacy among health professionals.
Significance of why it is vital to research Library search strategies, digital literacy and healthcare.
The healthcare sector is currently evolving and needs to maximize effectively using digital technologies to enhance patient care. Currently, the public libraries are offering information through e-learning sites where healthcare professions can obtain valuable materials. When one does not have the relevant skills to use in the digital sphere, it may become difficult to obtain the relevant materials. Additionally, with the emergence and development of technology-enhanced learning, embracing digital literacy by all healthcare professionals is an aspect that will lead to the sustainability of the healthcare sector. The technological advancements have resulted in continuing cultural changes within the healthcare sector. Based on such aspects, researching library skills and digital literacy will offer insights into how embracing them can improve the quality of care delivered in the healthcare sector.
Background of literacy search strategies, digital literacy and healthcare
Traditionally, most individuals, including healthcare professionals, found it challenging to search on different library databases. However, with the current evolutions, different search strategies are suggested (Whitney et al., 2017). Unlike digital databases, most library databases may have information that is not easily found on the internet. As a result, having the relevant skills will serve as a guide for fathering high-quality resources. When conducting research on e-library databases, one of the suggested techniques is by following the Boolean search. This technique involves using keywords to search for the required information (Whitney et al., 2017). Additionally, the other evolution of library searches has resulted in another strategy that involves searching for the subject through using predefined vocabularies in the different library databases. For instance, in the healthcare sector, when one uses key terms related to managing different conditions, they may be able to find articles rich in current research findings (Whitney et al., 2017).
The history of digital literacy can also be traced back to the 1930s when world war propaganda was emerging. At this point, most educators used to promote media literacy with the aim of teaching people how to judge and evaluate the messages that are being conveyed. The technological changes have resulted in the healthcare sector embracing this concept and are widely used in providing quality education and patient care (Kennedy & Yaldren, 2017).
The current changes in our societies have led to the emergence of conditions that needs effective management. With the availability of evidence-based resources in the libraries and digital databases, the medical practitioners in the health sector need to be empowered to use emerging digital health tools effectively. Empowering this sector will lay a foundation for constantly educating, monitoring and giving high-quality information to patients and other interdisciplinary teams. When the individuals in the healthcare sector have the skills needed to conduct research on the digital platforms and libraries, it will help them fully exploit the advantages associated with these revolutions.
Buckingham, D. (2016). Defining digital literacy. Nordic journal of digital literacy, 21-34. https://www.idunn.no/file/pdf/66808577/#page=21
Kennedy, S., & Yaldren, J. (2017). A look at digital literacy in health and social care. British Journal of Cardiac Nursing, 12(9), 428-432. https://www.magonlinelibrary.com/doi/full/10.12968/bjca.2017.12.9.428
Kuek, A., & Hakkennes, S. (2020). Healthcare staff digital literacy levels and their attitudes towards information systems. Health informatics journal, 26(1), 592-612. https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/1460458219839613
Perrier, L., Farrell, A., Ayala, A. P., Lightfoot, D., Kenny, T., Aaronson, E. … & Weiss, A. (2014). Effects of librarian-provided services in healthcare settings: a systematic review. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association, 21(6), 1118-1124. https://academic.oup.com/jamia/article/21/6/1118/2909309?login=true
Whitney, W., Keselman, A., & Humphreys, B. (2017). Libraries and librarians: Key partners for progress in health literacy research and practice. Information services & use, 37(1), 85-100. https://content.iospress.com/articles/information-services-and-use/isu821