The Princess Alice Hospice library is staffed by our new Hospice Librarian, Marianne, and our long standing library volunteer, John. Here, Marianne gives us an insight into working for the Hospice and the role of the library within the organisation.  

MarianneI have now been in my role as Hospice Librarian for a few weeks, and I’m beginning to find my feet. Having come from a background in University libraries, I wasn’t sure what to expect from working at the Hospice. I thought that it might be a serious, sombre place to work, but I couldn’t have been more wrong. I have found all the staff here to be so helpful and welcoming. Princess Alice really is a special and uplifting place to work. Staff fundraising activities often take place here, and one of my first team meetings took place when we were all dressed in PJs!

A selection of booksI manage the Hospice library, which is a treasured specialist collection of books which covers all aspects of palliative care, end of life and bereavement. The library also has a range of dedicated print journals which cover current thinking and research, and staff read these to support their professional practice. We also have a selection of children’s books to support young family members of Hospice visitors and patients.

A large part of my role here is answering queries from staff and visitors. Questions can be varied and range from how to access an article, where to find evidence on a particular topic or simply where to find a book in the library! We also share a lot of information with other healthcare libraries, and I receive many requests for articles from our collection. This exchange of knowledge does work both ways, as we also request papers from other libraries for our staff.

Our online library collection is flourishing, and this suits our staff who are often off-site supporting the community or working non-standard shift patterns. We have recently added the NHS Knowledge and Library Hub to our online collection, which has really boosted our provision of high quality books and journals. I am in the process of getting to know this resource thoroughly so I can then train our staff on how to use this fantastic research resource.

Person selecting a book from libraryI am part of the Education and Research team in the Hospice, and we meet together regularly to talk about new ideas and implementing initiatives. The Education team teaches the European Certificate in Essential Palliative Care (ECEPC) and I support these students with access to resources, and guide them to find information for their assignments.

I am really enjoying my time here at the Hospice and the weeks are flying past! If you have any queries or comments for our library, please do get in touch @ library@pah.org.uk