High quality information is essential for high quality medical education, clinical care and research. We propose hiring an information specialist whose primary responsibility will be to support students and faculty in the Medical College. The specialist would report to the Dean and work closely with students and faculty to facilitate integrating the best available evidence into classroom teaching, academic activities and clinical care. Specific responsibilities would include training faculty on best practices for finding and using information for medical education (e.g., how to use HINARI to access current journal articles and textbooks for free), and delivering an information literacy curriculum to all students in the Medical College.
There is a precedent for this. As part of their MEPI project, the University of Zimbabwe librarian has been systematically training all faculty in information literacy theory and hands-on literature searching skills. At the University of Zimbabwe, all students have participated in an information literacy curriculum called “Finding, Organising and using Medical Information” that was created by the Network of African Medical Librarians and Deans with support from the US National Library of Medicine. The curriculum would be available for use at KCMC, and several web-based videos are available online. (examples below)