The central library for Allina Health in Minneapolis, MN recently moved to new space. After 46 years in the “lower level” of an out-of-the way location, the library is now located in a prime spot on the first floor of Allina’s flagship hospital, Abbott Northwestern. We’re on a main corridor, a few steps from the medical staff lounge. And it’s above ground! The space includes numerous end-user workstations, a semi-private room for quiet study (which can also double as a training room for a small group), and a modest collection of books. Most of our textbooks and all journals are now online, which is what made a move to a smaller space possible. It was a race to get all our old journals recycled before the move, but the last batch went out just in time!
The space also includes cubes for library staff instead of private offices, but the tradeoff has been worth it for a beautiful new space in an ideal location. Both patrons and staff have been delighted with the space. We’ve even added a “little free library” to serve patients and family members, as well as hospital staff.
While the library serves all hospitals and clinics for Allina Health (located in Minnesota and western Wisconsin), being grounded in a direct patient care setting in this major hospital provides daily focus on our mission.