Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Medical Library and Information Science, Health Information Technology Research Center, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran

2 Department of Knowledge and Information Science, University of Isfahan, Isfahan, Iran

3 Department of Medical Library and Informatin Science, Health Information Technology Research Center, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran


BACKGROUND: The best mechanisms for medical librarians to be more involved in health, especially
during crisis condition, and to expand their roles are using experiences of other individuals and
performing new activities. This study aimed to identify the roles of medical librarians in the COVID‑19
crisis in Iran.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: This research was done by a qualitative content analysis method.
Research participants in the first phase included whole scientific papers (19 documents) which had
been published by medical librarians related to the COVID‑19 issue and in the second phase 10
medical librarians involved in the COVID‑19 who were interviewed and continued until data saturation.
Data were collected through each interview, and data analysis was performed using content analysis
method. Then, obtained information of the first and second phases was merged together, and codes,
subcategories as well as main categories were formed.
RESULTS: According to the results, 7 main categories and 24 subcategories regarding the roles
of librarians in COVID‑19 crisis were identified. The main categories include hygiene  services
promotion, development of health information‑seeking skills, health research services, interaction‑level
development, evidence‑based policy development, information dissemination services promotion, and
management services development. Furthermore, regarding barriers to the role of medical librarians
in the COVID‑19 crisis in Iran, four subcategories were identified that are medical librarian‑related
barriers, organization‑related barriers, profession‑related barriers, and context of society (country
conditions)‑related barriers.
CONCLUSION: Medical librarians relatively have been able to provide effective health information
services to managers, health‑care specialists, and the general public in a variety of health fields.


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