Health Happens in Libraries

Health Happens in Libraries is a program that magnifies the role of public libraries as key contributors to community health. By supporting public library staff with resources to respond confidently to patron requests for health information, and tools to form intentional partnerships with local community health experts, Health Happens in Libraries enhances public library capacity to advance health and wellness priorities in the communities they serve.

Libraries have a long history of meeting public demand for consumer health information. A recent IMLS study showed that an estimated 37 percent of library computer users (28 million people) use library computers and seek assistance from librarians for health and wellness issues, including learning about medical conditions, finding health care providers, and assessing health insurance options. Health Happens in Libraries acknowledges the growing intersection of digital technologies and individual health management, and the opportunities for libraries to provide both physical and digital access to meaningful health education in their communities.

This program is run in partnership with ZeroDivide and is funded by a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services. Resources available to all libraries at this site include:

  • Opportunities to get involved, either through signing up for regular resource updates, or sharing your story and questions with program staff directly.
  • Access to our latest project news, including profiles of libraries working to address community health needs and announcements regarding new resource or partnership opportunities.
  • Information on upcoming and archived webinars, where libraries and other community-based health and wellness representatives can share their knowledge and experience. 
  • A growing repository of health information resources, including examples of related work undertaken by state and public libraries nationwide.  

Sign up to receive updates about this project.

Updates will include details about scheduled webinars and new additions to the resources available through WebJunction.

Most Recently Added

Library Staff Members as Health Literacy First Responders

 News / Last Modified: 16 November 2015

Misinformation about health abounds in today’s info-glutted environment. What does this mean for public libraries, and what role can they play in addressing issues of accurate health information?

A panel of excellent presenters addressed thi...

Project J.O.B. Aligns Health and Economic Opportunity for Community

 News / Last Modified: 11 November 2015

Thorson Memorial Library, in collaboration with the Grant County Child & Youth Council, embarked on a project titled J.O.B., standing for Jobs, Opportunities and Benefits. This project launched as part of the library’s participation in the Public...

Get Ready for Open Enrollment

 News / Last Modified: 02 November 2015

On November 1, 2015, the third open enrollment period begins for individuals to access or renew affordable health coverage through the health insurance marketplace. This open enrollment cycle runs through January 31, 2016. As trusted community instit...

Public Libraries for Health Toolkit

 News / Last Modified: 19 October 2015

With the support of the Public Libraries for Health grantmaking program from the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota Foundation, seven libraries in both urban and rural areas of Minnesota implemented projects to help people reach their full healt...