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Tuesday, August 15, 2006


I miss being at work very much, even though I know the hardest job in my life right now is to stay well during this treatment so I can rejoin the crew at the library after it is over. In addition to the great people I work with, I miss the technology that I use when searching for -and educating others about- health information. The coolest thing about being a medical librarian is tearing down barriers for health information seekers. Unfamiliar technology can be a big barrier, so I work hard to keep up with the newest trends, while staying fluent in the older ways. These days, most all health information requires using technology of some sort, unless you simply ask a librarian for help. (It is okay to ask for help. We wouldn't do this searching and educating as a job if we didn't enjoy it!). Well, my colleagues at work must have known I was experiencing a lack of new technology. Those wonderful people went together and surprised me with an iPod of my very own to care and feed during these weeks of treatment! Figuring out how this new critter can dance (metaphorically, of course) has really brightened my days. If you are lucky enough to have an iPod already, or have great friends that will surprise you with one, you should check out the podcasts and audiobooks pertaining to cancer treatment. Most podcasts are free, but most audiobooks are available for a price. Some examples of podcasts pertaining to cancer include: Discovery Health Channel; some medical centers such as Johns Hopkins ; and at cancer support sites like The National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship [NCCS]. The NCCS has its wonderful Cancer Survival Toolbox available free on iTunes, as well as free audio files on its website. Some of the topics covered in the Toolbox: Making Decisions, Solving Problems, Negotiating, Finding Ways to Pay for Care, and Standing Up for Your Rights.
Audiobooks on iTunes include: Cancer Schmancer, by Fran Drescher; Return to Wholeness, by David Simon, M.D.; and Live Strong:Inspirational stories from cancer survivors, by the Lance Armstrong Foundation.
Please don't think you have to purchase a new piece of technology to listen to audiobooks, though. Remember that your public library most likely has audiobooks with players for you to listen to while waiting for care or resting at home. These could offer avenues of escape and education for survivors and caregivers alike.


Anonymous said...

Hi! I've just read all of your blog entries at one time so I'm now caught up with your activities of the last few weeks. I really enjoyed the pictures! Can't believe that your kids are so much older. They are terrific looking kids and I'm sure they're doing their best to support you through all of this. Yes, I agree completely that "cheeky" librarian fits you perfectly!!! I also applaud your decision to use humor to help get you through this. My sister did the same with her breast cancer and it really helped her to cope. Had lunch with D.J. last Tuesday and she told me about your "grocery store search and eat" experience. Sounded like a great thing to do especially finishing off the Bailey's. I'm NOT a blogger so hope I'm doing this comment thing correctly. Now that I'm "retired" I'm not up on the latest tech. I also appreciated the comments you've been getting from medical professionals on being such a savvy patient. It's the librarian in us that makes us want to get the best info we can before and during the crises of our lives. All the physicians I've dealt with for my heart problems have all been amazed that I give them a list of all my meds, medical procedures, allergies, etc. before they even ask for it. Not many patients do that and they are always amazed by it. Just wanted to say "Hi" and "I'm thinking of you". You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. Hang in there!!! Love, Nancy

scraps said...

Trust you to be educating us even though you are not officially being a medical librarian. Did you know that you made the Today newsletter? Be prepared, this blog is about to be popular.

Will call soon

Anonymous said...

Don't forget about the National Library of Medicine's "Director's Comments" Lots of brief updates on health information on MedlinePlus!

Michelle said...

Most podcasts and audiobooks are useless for deaf or heard of hearing people unless there are captions available with it which is rarely the case! So once again we miss out.

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