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Biomedicine & Health - Service Level Agreement


A Library Service Agreement between certain NHS Trusts*, NHS London (North Central London area) and UCL sets out the library and information services provided by UCL Library Services to all staff employed by these NHS Trusts. The current agreement runs until 31 March 2015.

*Camden & Islington NHS Foundation Trust, Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children NHS Foundation Trust, Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust, Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Trust, University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Libraries covered by the agreement

The following table shows the location of UCL "Home" libraries included in the Library Service Agreement. NHS staff working for Camden & Islington NHS Foundation Trust should join the library nearest to their workplace.

NHS Trust Hospitals Nearest UCL "Home" Library
Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children NHS Foundation Trust Great Ormond Sreet Hospital for Children Friends of Great Ormond Street Hospital Library, UCL Institute of Child Health
Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust Moorfields Eye Hospital Joint Library of Ophthalmology, Moorfields Eye Hospital and UCL Institute of Ophthalmology
Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust Royal Free Hospital Royal Free Hospital Medical Library, UCL
Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Trust Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital: Stanmore site UCL Institute of Orthopaedics Library
University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Eastman Dental Hospital UCL Eastman Dental Library
  The Heart Hospital UCL Cruciform Library
  Hospital for Tropical Diseases UCL Cruciform Library
  National Hospital for Neurology & Neurosurgery Queen Square Library, UCL Institute of Neurology
  Royal London Hospital for Integrated Medicine Queen Square Library, UCL Institute of Neurology
  Royal National Throat, Nose & Ear Hospital The UCL Ear Institute & Action on Hearing Loss Libraries
  University College Hospital (including Elizabeth Garrett Anderson Wing) UCL Cruciform Library
  University College Hospital Macmillan Cancer Centre UCL Cruciform Library

Description Of Current Services (from Schedule A of the Agreement)

Although the libraries are co-ordinated to ensure the most efficient use of resources, facilities on each site vary. For the most up to date information on the Libraries, users are referred to the main UCL Library Services web page.

Standards of service

Items in italics are the service standards towards which we are currently working. Key performance indicators are being developed across Library Services.

1. Staffing.

1.1 The Libraries provide access to advice and support from information professionals.

  • Professional information staff will be available for at least 75% of the core opening hours of 10.00 am to 4.00 pm, Monday to Friday.

Library opening hours are detailed at: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/Library/opening.shtml

1.2 A knowledgeable and helpful service will be provided by all staff.

  • Evidence of appropriate staff training and continuing professional development will be provided in the site Annual Reports.

2. Enquiry and information services.

These include:

2.1 Referral of users' enquiries to the most appropriate member of Library staff.

  • For telephone enquiries to aim to reply within a working day and for written or e-mailed enquiries within 3 days of receipt.

2.2 Quick reference and bibliographic checking.

  • Assistance will be given within 30 minutes during core opening hours.

2.3 Computerised literature searching. A charge may be levied for this service.

  • Urgent searches relating to patient-related enquiries will be performed within one hour, during core hours.

2.4 Guidance on how to access timely, accurate and up-to-date medical and health related information.

  • In-depth training will be provided at the user's home library.

3. A collection of regularly updated, relevant resources.

These include:

3.1 Books, journals and other printed information sources appropriate to the specialties of each site.

  • These will be selected after due consultation and within available resources.
  • The site Annual Reports will provide for each site library the number of books purchased during the previous academic financial year. These figures will be derived from the data supplied to SCONUL (Society of College, National and University Libraries.
  • In order to achieve the best use of resources, duplication of holdings across the sites will be kept to a minimum subject to local clinical service needs. All users will have access to an inter-site document delivery service.

3.2 Electronic information sources.

Access to electronic information resources is described below in two categories:

  • 3.2.1 covers the range of resources accessible within UCL libraries using dedicated walk-in access PCs
  • 3.2.2 covers the range of resources accessible directly online, using NHS Athens accounts

3.2.1 In-library access to UCL's e-resources.

In-library access to over 14,000 full-text electronic journal titles is available to NHS staff at UCL Library sites. Of these, over 4,500 are medical and healthcare related titles (figures correct at March 2009). See which ejournals may be accessed through this service.

In addition to ejournals, a wide range of databases and ebooks in all subjects are also available in-library from the dedicated "Explore access point " computers located within UCL Library sites.

For example, the following e-resources are available to NHS staff, over and above those that are licensed via NHS Evidence or London eKAT (electronic Knowledge Access Team):

  • Best Practice
  • Biosis
  • Maternity and Infant Care Database
  • Scopus
  • Social Policy and Practice
  • Web of Science

There is a list of all databases available in-library for NHS staff.

3.2.2 Direct online access to UCL-procured e-resources using NHS Athens accounts.

Wherever possible, licences are negotiated with suppliers that allow direct access to a range of e-resources for NHS staff with personal NHS Athens accounts, directly from the desktop at the workplace or at home. Several consortial agreements have been negotiated on behalf of the five London medical schools and affiliated NHS Trusts - see more information about this

At August 2010, these include:

Clinical Evidence from the BMJ Publishing Group


- Lippincott journals. Around 250 titles are available through this route. All are current subscriptions, with no embargo.

- PsycARTICLES. Over 70 journal titles from the American Psychological Association. All are current subscriptions, with no embargo.


70 Oxford Handbooks and Textbooks, as well as additional ebook titles, including the Oxford Handbook for the Foundation Programme, the Oxford Textbook of Medicine, the Oxford Textbook of Public Health and the Oxford Textbook of Surgery.

Additional e-resources are available to NHS home users on many sites. For example, access to around 50 additional journal titles is available from EBSCOhost EJS as a result of joint consortial procurement undertaken by UCL Library Services on behalf of three Trusts (the Great Ormond Street Hospital NHS Trust, the Royal Free Hampstead NHS Trust and University College Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust).

Administration for Athens registration for NHS users is managed by library staff at each site.

4. Loan and document delivery services

These include:

4.1 Standard loans, reservations and renewals.

4.2. lnterlibrary loans.

For requests submitted during core working hours to:

• supply 75% of standard requests for material from other libraries within 7 working days.

• supply 75% of urgent requests within 7 working hours.

Charges are made for interlibrary loans

4.3. Inter-site loan and document delivery service.

• supply 75% of standard requests within 48 hours.

• supply 75% of urgent requests within 4 working hours.

Charges may be made for the inter-site loan and document delivery service

4.4. Store requests.

• retrieve available material from local store by the end of the next working day.

4.5. Access to photocopying services within the context of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988.

provide a reliable and convenient photocopying service, with repairs carried out within 24 hours.

5. User support and training.

This includes:

5.1 Orientation to services and layout.

This includes induction for groups of new staff; participation in hospital or Trust induction days; introductions for individual new users.

5.2. Leaflets and guides for new and other users.

Core information includes introductory guides to collections, services, facilities and way-finding guides. Extensive guides are also available via library web pages.

5.3. Group or individual training in information skills and problem-based approaches to accessing information.

6. Publicity and promotion of services.

There is a pro-active approach, utilising a wide range of materials and techniques.

7. Accommodation.

Each library provides a learning environment including study facilities; details are provided in site guides and web pages.

8. Exclusions.

Certain facilities housed within the libraries are not available to NHS users

These include:

8.1. Some materials for local teaching.

8.2. Confidential materials.

8.3. Certain electronic services which are only available to HEFCE funded staff and students because of sector-based restrictions.

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Last modified 27 September 2013

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