Health Information 101

Next Session: May 11 - June 21 (Chats available upon request.)

Students who complete the required coursework for Health Information 101 will receive 1 CEU (Continuing Education Unit!) Registration rates--individual and group--for this course are $20 more than other courses in order to reflect this credit.

Register online now! Or, register by mail or fax by downloading the registration form (PDF format.)

Course Description and Objectives:

**Updated for 2014! With the March 23, 2010 passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), there is increased emphasis on patients' active, rather than passive, participation in issues concerning their health status. And participation is difficult for the one in five U.S. adults who function at a basic or below basic literacy level.

The over-65 population will constitute a full 20 percent of the total U.S. population by 2030. Six out of ten Baby Boomers will be managing multiple chronic illnesses and will need access to timely, reliable and accurate healthcare information in order to make timely and accurate healthcare decisions.

Eight out of ten Internet users go online looking for health information and many feel overwhelmed and confused by the amount of information they find and frustrated by their inability to find what they were looking for.

Of particular relevance to librarians is this: 75 percent of health seekers do not check the source or date of the information of the health information they find.

Learning Outcomes

During this six week course, we'll demystify and decode medical terminology then learn the basics of evidence-based biomedical literature searching. We'll learn how to systematically evaluate a health website then look at some the best of best sites for medical, pharmaceutical and drug information.

We need to be well-versed in the business of healthcare and we'll learn about PPACA, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, HealthIT and HITECH, Meaningful Use, Physician and Hospital Rankings & Ratings, and the Personal Health Record.

And finally, we'll discuss health literacy issues and how to create partnerships with hospital and academic medical librarians through the National Network of Libraries of Medicine.

By the end of the six week “Health Information 101” course, students will be able to:

  • Construct an information search using medical terminology
  • Formulate a search strategy in PubMed utilizing both controlled vocabulary and natural language terms
  • Recommend consumer health resources based on patron literacy levels
  • Design a shame free environment within the library
  • Apply the Ten Question Consumer Health Website Evaluation Checklist when assessing consumer health website
  • Adopt health reference interview techniques
  • Describe healthcare reforms

Health Information 101 is asynchronous. This allows participants to work through course material at times convenient to them. Participants may also choose to schedule online chat time with the instructor.

This course was designed with public librarians in mind, however primary, secondary and academic librarians will find this course useful too.

The course is divided into six modules:

  • Medical Terminology
  • Evidence-based biomedical literature searching
  • Literacy and Health Outcomes
  • Evaluating health and medical websites
  • Consumer health resources
  • The Business of Healthcare


Maura Sostack, MLS, AHIP-D has been involved in the library science and research analytic field for over 25 years. She holds a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science and Economics and a Master's Degree in Library and Information Science. Ms. Sostack began her career working for the United Nations Department for Disarmament Affairs and was a Criminal Intelligence Analyst for the Pennsylvania Crime Commission. For 16 years, she managed hospital libraries for Virtua Health and Methodist Hospital, a division of Thomas Jefferson University Hospitals.

Currently, she works for Elsevier Health Sciences in their Evidence-based Medicine Center.


How to Register

  • Online
  • By Fax: download, complete, and fax form (PDF format) to (312) 280-1538
  • By Mail: download, complete, and mail form (PDF format) to American Library Association, ATTN: MACS/Online CE Registration, 50 E. Huron Street, Chicago, IL 60611


Students who complete the required coursework for Health Information 101 will receive 1 CEU (Continuing Education Unit!) Registration rates--individual and group--for this course are $20 more than other courses in order to reflect this credit.


Questions about your registration should be directed to Technical questions about the webinar should be directed to Andrea Hill, RUSA Web Manager, at

Thank you and we look forward to your participation!

Registration Fees

  • $150 for RUSA members
  • $195 for ALA members
  • $230 for non-ALA members
  • $120 for student members and retired members