New NLM Library exhibit shows the important role of nurses in confronting domestic violence in the United States

The UT Southwestern Health Sciences Digital Library & Learning Center is pleased to host Confronting Violence: Improving Women’s Lives – a six-panel traveling exhibition provided by the National Library of Medicine – that uses images, manuscripts, and records to tell the stories of the nurses who witnessed the effects of domestic violence and campaigned for change.

Activists and reformers in the United States have long recognized the harm of domestic violence and sought to improve the lives of women who were battered. During the late 20th century, nurses took up the call. With passion and persistence, they worked to reform a medical profession that largely dismissed or completely failed to acknowledge violence against women as a serious health issue. Beginning in the late 1970s, nurses were in the vanguard as they pushed the larger medical community to identify victims, adequately respond to their needs, and work towards the prevention of domestic violence. This is their story.

Confronting Violence, Improving Women’s Lives began traveling around the United States in October 2015 and will be at the South Campus Library until January 27, 2018.

Credit line: The National Library of Medicine produced this exhibition.
Curated by Catherine Jacquet, PhD
Images courtesy Ellen Shub and National Library of Medicine.

After 19 years of service, Dr. Claudia DeShay retires from the Library

Dr. Claudia DeShay at her retirement gathering on December 6, 2017

Claudia DeShay, Ph.D., has officially retired from the Health Sciences Digital Library and Learning Center after 19 years of service at UT Southwestern Medical Center.

Claudia has been much more than the Library’s Education Program Coordinator. She demonstrated a passion for education through her outreach work to the campus and the Dallas/Fort Worth community, and she coordinated all of the Library’s educational offerings and developed and taught classes and other types of instruction customized to the needs of the community. Her liaison areas were:

  • School of Medicine Academic Colleges, where she was an ethics mentor and facilitator
  • Department of Pediatrics, where she taught residents the value of children’s literature and communication techniques
  • Office of Global Heath, where she partnered to educate and train medical students and faculty how to access NLM and University of Texas Southwestern resources abroad
  • Office of Medicine Education, where she was a member of each year’s curriculum and training faculty on Team Based Learning
  • Department of Clinical Sciences – Division of Ethics

Her outreach work was in partnership with the Office of Minority Student Affairs and the National Network of Library of Medicine South Central Region. Claudia’s participation as a faculty member in the Health Professions Recruitment and Exposure Program (HPREP) involved meeting with parents and students of minority and underrepresented high school students to give them a glimpse of education and career opportunities in health care professions. Claudia was also a faculty member of the Joint Admission Medical Program (JAMP) to identify, support, and encourage highly qualified, economically disadvantaged students who desire to pursue a medical education.

The outreach activities that Claudia has performed in partnership with the National Network of Library of Medicine South Central Region have touched many lives in West Dallas. Brother Bill’s Helping Hand (BBHH) has a monthly consumer health information class that Claudia taught. The outreach program that Claudia led was usually bilingual and provided current resources and instruction to locate resources to help the attendees – for example, how to find information on the Flu Shot or MMR Vaccine using Medline Plus.  Other topics have been on ESL, parenting tips, suicide prevention, etc. The attendees had a thirst for information and were always happy to learn how to use the computer or how to go to their public library to find information on any topic.

Dr. DeShay’s passion for improving the health of the community was exhibited through her consistent quest to increase health literacy in the community. She volunteered and set up exhibit booths at every health fair in collaboration with the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center and specifically with the Department of Family & Community Medicine. These events included Kwanza-fest, United We Serve, Mayor’s Back to School Fair, etc.

Dr. DeShay’s passion and tireless advocacy for health information literacy for the underprivileged in our region contributed to her winning the prestigious Michael E. DeBakey Award in 2015 from the Friends of the National Library of Medicine. Her passion and progress in humanities studies for medical students will bring her back for teaching in this area as a volunteer faculty.

Richard Wayne, Claudia’s supervisor and friend, summed it up best at the closing of his remarks at her retirement party, “I will miss you Dr. DeShay. I will miss your integrity, your positive attitude, and your great contribution to our library. Thank you.”

NLM Poster Exhibit: Frankenstein, Penetrating the Secrets of Nature

The UT Southwestern Health Sciences Digital Library & Learning Center is pleased to host Frankenstein: Penetrating the Secrets of Nature, a six-panel traveling exhibition that explores the birth of the novel Frankenstein, Mary Shelley’s life, connections to medicine and science in her time, and how Frankenstein continues to resonate into the 20th century and beyond. Frankenstein was first published anonymously in 1818, with revised editions attributed to Shelley in 1822 and 1831. The 1831 edition is the version most widely read.

The exhibit will be on display for the UT Southwestern community until December 30, 2017. This physical exhibition also has publicly-available online components, including web pages for each of the six panels, higher education class modules, a curator’s bibliography, and even an NPR interview with an illustrator about adapting Frankenstein for a graphic novel.

The National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health developed and produced this exhibition. This exhibition has been adapted from early exhibitions including the National Library of Medicine installation (1997-1998) and the American Library traveling exhibition (2002-2012). It was guest curated by Susan E. Lederer, Ph.D. (Robert Turell Professor of Medical History and Bioethics, University of Wisconsin-Madison).

ALCEP funding highlights—Texas County Histories & African American Historical Serials

A wide group of online resources was recently purchased by the University of Texas Digital Library with Academic Library Collection Enhancement Program (ALCEP) funds. The UT Board of Regents allocates ALCEP funds for one-time collection purchases to broaden the research and scholarly capabilities of the System’s fourteen institutions. The UT Southwestern Health Sciences Digital Library and Learning Center now offers online access to two history-centric resources through an ALCEP purchase: Texas County Histories and African American Historical Serials.

The Library now has perpetual access rights to Texas County Histories, a collection of more than 80 ebooks within Accessible Archives. Accessible Archives is a full-text, searchable database that includes serial publications such as newspapers and magazines, as well as books and county histories. Note: Other content within the Accessible Archives database is only available through September 2018.

Some of these ebooks also provide information on the history of medicine in Texas. The Encyclopedia of Texas, written in the 1920s, has a chapter on the history of the Texas medical profession, written by R. W. Knox, M.D., who had been a president of what is now known as the Texas Medical Association. Another chapter highlights Dallas as the medical center of the Southwest.

The other history-related resource of interest is African American Historical Serials, which is available through EBSCO. Developed in conjunction with the American Theological Library Association (ATLA) as an effort to preserve endangered serials related to African American religious life and culture, this database is a centralized and accessible digital resource of formerly fragmentary, widely-dispersed, and endangered materials originating from various institutions and sources, including some that had not previously participated in preservation projects. This collection documents the history of African American life and religious organizations from materials published between 1816 through 1922.

Some of the online materials within this resource that chronicle the history of medicine include the Report of the State Hospital at Goldsboro, North Carolina, which covers every other year between 1902 to 1916, and the Annual Report of the Lincoln Hospital & Home, which covers some of the years between 1915 and 1922. These reports provide images of hospital buildings, department staffing, statistics on patient stays, local medical advertisements, and more.


Highlights of medical artifacts on display at Dallas Public Library

The UT Southwestern Health Sciences Digital Library and Learning Center’s Special Collections and Archives includes more than 200 medical artifacts. Thanks to the Dallas Public Library, selected highlights from the medical artifact collection are on now display at the J. Erik Jonsson Central Library in downtown Dallas.

Some of the artifacts on display include:

  • An English homeopathic medicine case (circa 1873)
  • Pocket surgical kit with a paper packet of surgical needles, manufactured around 1880
  • Surgical instruments catalog published in1890
  • Snake bite kit similar to those issued to oil field workers in Texas in the 1930s and 1940s

A snake bite kit similar to those issued to oil field workers in Texas in the 1930s and 1940s

Some selected artifacts also have connections to the Texas Physicians Historical Biographical Database. This publicly-accessible database contains brief biographical entries and citations for more than 10,000 Texas physicians who either practiced in or had strong historical connections to Texas. Artifacts from physicians William Benjamin Goodner and Luis Leib are included in this exhibit.

A small selection of patent medicines and pharmaceutical containers

A small selection of patent medicines and pharmaceutical containers are also on display. The federal 1906 Pure Food and Drug Act called many of these earlier medicines into question. To learn more, the National Library of Medicine provides online access to the FDA Notices of Judgement Collection, which contains a fascinating digital archive of evidence files, including correspondence, legal records, lab reports, product labeling, photographs, and more.

St. Paul Hospital on Bryan Street, two nurses adjusting empty orthopedics patient bed.

One of the four display cases contains a range of artifacts, such as the pitcher (visible in this circa 1955 photo) that are also part of the extensive St. Paul Hospital Collection, 1896-2004.

The exhibit is available for viewing on the fifth floor (Business & Technology) of the J. Erik Jonsson Central Library in downtown Dallas until mid-February 2018.

Questions or comments about the exhibit? Contact

Library moves to card-free printing

The Health Sciences Digital Library and Learning Center is upgrading its printing service and will no longer require cards. The system will now be administered through the campus active directory, allowing users to login with a UT Southwestern username and password.

Additional value can be added 24/7 with a $1, $5, $10, or $20 bill and/or coins at the designated South Campus (main) Library Printing Account Station and Cash Box (E2, Station #1). There are no refunds once funds have been added.

If you wish to pay by personal credit card, IDR or check, please call x82626 (214-648-2626) or visit the Library Administration Office at Bass Center (BL5.500), Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Any balance remaining on a Library Card may be transferred to the new system upon request before January 1, 2018. Please email Charles Robinson with the  information below to request your card balance transfer before the card system is permanently retired.

  • Your full name
  • Library print card number
  • UT Southwestern username

Library secures award funding for new SLA 3D printer and supplies

CREDIT: Formlabs

The Health Sciences Digital Library and Learning Center was the proud recipient of the 2017 National Network of Libraries of Medicine South Central Region (NNLM.SCR) Technology Award, which went to the purchase of a new Form 2 stereolithography 3D printer, various resins types, and (coming soon) wash and cure stations.

Library 3D printers are available for campus usage to facilitate exploration and support utilization of this innovative technology in research and clinical settings. UT Southwestern affiliates are highly encouraged to complete a Library 3D printer orientation before using the printers.

Files can be printed via a USB connection from a laptop using PreForm software. The printer is currently available by appointment only in Library Administration at Bass Center (BL5.500); it will eventually be moved to the Digital Media Production Studio at the South Campus (main) Library by early 2018.

The resin types currently available for use with the Form 2 are:

  • Black
  • Clear
  • Dental
  • Durable
  • Flexible
  • Grey
  • Tough
  • White

The award was due to the collective efforts of Jane Scott, Desmond Ho, and Jeff Perkins from the Library’s Digital Services and Technology Planning unit.

Records management and archives management – a match made in heaven

It is an incontrovertible truth that excellent records management contributes greatly to excellent archives management, at least where government, institutional, and corporate records are concerned (perhaps not so much with the personal records of people that are donated to an archives).  Having an established classification scheme is key to locating and retrieving records in an expeditious manner.  In Managing Records: A Handbook of Principles and Practices, Elizabeth Shepherd and Geoffrey Yeo point out that classification schemes should be based on an analysis of the functions, processes, and activities of an organization.  The classification scheme should not be organized by the various business units composing an organization, as similar activities and functions may occur in many of the offices/departments/centers.  Thus, in order to get a complete picture of the activities of an organization, Shepherd and Yeo write, “the systems used to manage the records of those activities should reflect an organization-wide perspective.”[1]  This information is incredibly relevant to the creation of records here at UT Southwestern, as many offices, departments, and centers across campus may be creating the same types of records. As a records management coordinator for an office/department/center on campus, you may wonder “How do I classify these records?” Referencing UT Southwestern’s records retention schedule can be helpful in bringing a defined order to your office records.


Our records retention schedule is divided into various categories: administrative files, personnel records, fiscal records, etc. Within these categories is a breakdown of the different “records series” which are relevant to a particular category/sub-category. One records series which should be familiar to many faculty and staff here is the “Administrative Correspondence” records series. We all create administrative correspondence throughout the course of our workday. For example, have you sent an email recently providing your thoughts and ideas on a project your department is working on? Have you distributed an inter-office memo that explains a new policy or procedure? That’s administrative correspondence! According to our records retention schedule, administrative correspondence is maintained for four years from the record’s creation. Upon reaching its four-year mark, the administrative correspondence is then destroyed. However, there is an exception to this retention rule, as explained in the schedule. The administrative correspondence of the Office of the President, senior and vice presidents, the Provost’s Office, Legal Counsel, Internal Audit, and other upper Executive Staff members falls under archival review.

What does “archival review” mean? Archival review is the requirement that the UT Southwestern institutional archivist assess the records of the above designated offices/administrative positions to determine if there are any records of long-term historical value. For example, any correspondence related to the planning of Clements University Hospital is of incredible value to our institution’s history and would be selected for the UT Southwestern Archives.

Smart records management ensures that an institution’s history will be well preserved. UT Southwestern’s records retention schedule does an excellent job of noting which records are permanent and thus should be transferred to the Archives. The schedule also clearly defines those records series

[1] Shepherd, Elizabeth and Geoffrey Yeo. Managing Records: A Handbook of Principles and Practices (London: Facet Publishing, 2002) 74.

What is an archives?

by Catherine Miller, CA, Digital Archivist, UT Southwestern Library

What comes to mind when you hear the word “archives”? Do you immediately picture your email “archive” or an “archive” that you see on a blog site? Or do you think, “Hmmm, archives says to me dust, old stuff, attics, or basements”? Or do you say to yourself, “I have no conception of what that means”? If any of the above is true, then this is an exciting opportunity to introduce you to what an archives is.

To understand what an archives is, it is useful to compare archives and libraries. Indeed, my favorite analogy for explaining the difference between archives and libraries is the following:

“Libraries are to restaurants – AS – Archives are to grocery stores”

When you visit a restaurant, you select a meal from the menu, and the meal is prepared for you: you receive the meal at the restaurant table as a finished product. When you visit a library, you browse the shelves and select a book to read: the book you choose is the synthesized finished product of research from various sources that have been interpreted for you and presented to you in the neatly bound book you hold in your hands. Conversely, when you go to the grocery store, you are getting the raw materials to assemble a meal yourself. For example, the ingredients for an awesome spaghetti dinner include pasta, tomatoes/tomato sauce, onion, green pepper, ground beef, etc. Just as you have to bring together the various materials to make this awesome spaghetti, archives are all about bringing together records from various creators to tell an awesome story. Working in archives, you become the aggregator of information (the cook, so to speak) who is piecing together the records of history so as to tell a story. With archives, you are the interpreter of records, unlike with reading a book, where the information presented has already been interpreted by the author.

Archives contain unique records that a researcher will not find anywhere else. This is a main distinguishing factor between the work of librarians and the work of archivists. Generally, librarians work with published, widely distributed books that you can find in any library.[1] Archivists generally work with non-published materials such as an individual’s personal papers that you will only find at one institution. For example, the UT Southwestern Archives has the records of Dr. Alfred G. Gilman in our Alfred Goodman Gilman Collection. It was donated by Dr. Gilman in December 2012 and contains records which a researcher will only find by visiting the UT Southwestern Archives. The international impact of research is illustrated in one way by the following document that you will only find in the Archives here at UT Southwestern:

Now that you have an idea of what an archives is and how they differ from libraries, here’s a brief introduction to the UT Southwestern Archives. The UT Southwestern Archives is responsible for collecting, processing, preserving, and providing access to the records essential to documenting the administrative, intellectual, and social life of UT Southwestern Medical Center. The Archives is dedicated to documenting:

  1. The mandated functions of UT Southwestern Medical Center and our University Hospitals: education, research, and healthcare delivery
  2. The governance and administration of UT Southwestern Medical Center
  3. The lives of faculty, staff, students, and alumni of UT Southwestern Medical Center
  4. Parkland Memorial Hospital, which has been UT Southwestern’s long-time teaching hospital

The Archives has both institutional records and manuscript collections that contribute to telling the larger story of UT Southwestern’s history. You can learn more about the Archives’ holdings by visiting our webpage. The Archives holds many photographs documenting UT Southwestern’s built environment, research activities, faculty, students, etc. Over 700 of these photos have been digitized and are available to view online in the UT Southwestern Image Archives.

Curious to learn more about the UT Southwestern Archives and about the work that archivists do? Send us your questions at!

[1] There are exceptions to this rule in the library world, with rare book libraries and special collection libraries being two immediate examples.

Celebrating National Medical Librarians Month

“The Medical Library Association has declared October as National Medical Librarians Month to raise awareness of the important role of the health information professional,” said Kelly Gonzalez, MSIS, MBA, Assistant Vice President for Library Services. Library staff strive to support UT Southwestern Medical Center’s educational, research, and clinical missions through services, including the:

  • Provision of a comprehensive digital collection of databases and resources
  • Delivery of librarian-mediated searches in response to clinical and research inquiries
  • Education of UT Southwestern Medical Center students, faculty, and staff on how to access/use electronic resources
  • Archiving of the institution’s historical documents, photographs, etc.
  • Collection, preservation, and distribution of UTSW electronic theses, dissertations, and archives in its institutional repository

For more information or to schedule training with a health sciences librarian, please contact us by completing the Ask Us form or call 214-648-2001.