Library Services


Increasing ICU therapists’ engagement with research literature through journal club support

22 March 2021

Royal Free Hospital Medical Library staff have facilitated a bi-monthly journal club for a team of Intensive Care Unit therapists in the Royal Free Hospital to support their professional development and learning about research methods.

Interior of the Royal Free Library, looking down from high platform

The service has been highlighted as an example of excellence in Knowledge for Healthcare: Mobilising evidence; sharing knowledge; improving outcomes, the refreshed Health Education England national strategy for Library and Knowledge Services, published in January 2021.

Since 2017, a member of library staff has attended the ICU team meeting every other month to facilitate a critical appraisal discussion of a paper chosen by a member of the therapy team. Library staff read and appraise the paper, and prepare PowerPoint slides and other useful materials to support explanation and group discussion.

The journal club has supported professional development and learning about research methods. Attendees have developed their critical appraisal skills and feel more confident and engaged with research literature as a result.

Junior staff have also reported that they feel more comfortable using research earlier in their careers than they might otherwise have done.

Catherine Woollen, Speech and Language Therapist who worked with Jenni Ford, Evidence Services Librarian Royal Free Hospital Medical Library to organise the sessions said:

Our confidence in critical appraisal gained from journal club will ultimately enable the therapy team to more effectively transfer the evidence base to our clinical practice.

Further information

Find out about the services, support and resources the library offer to NHS Staff and Students on our Library Services for NHS staff and students webpage.