National Agricultural Library Assessment Report
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Appendix H
Library Operation: NLM and NIH Budget Analysis
The National Library of Medicine began in the early 1800's under the Department of the Army as the Library of the Surgeon General. In the 1930-40's the Library was transferred to the Public Health Service. In 1956 Senators Lister Hill and John F. Kennedy-sponsored legislation to set up a National Library of Medicine (NLM) and a regional health science libraries network. NLM's principal mission is to serve as an archive for biomedical research and to provide broad public access to this literature through the creation of databases. In general NLM does not respond to the needs of individuals.
The NIH Library serves the needs of the researchers and administrators of the National Institutes of Health and is itself a member of the NLM regional health science library network. The NIH campus in Bethesda includes a large hospital for clinical studies. Practicing physicians and researchers at the hospital have critical need for customized information research services not provided by NLM. The NIH Library was established to meet the needs for the hospital as well as the local research community. The NIH Library provides individualized services including assistance in tracking and monitoring grant and contract work. In turn the NIH Library relies on the information products and services provided by NLM such as the MEDLINE database.
The NIH Library until this year was considered and funded through an overhead mechanism. This year the Library is being placed on a cost-recovery basis. Each Institute has been assessed a charge to support basic library operations based upon number of institute staff and historic use for specialized services. In turn the NIH Library this year has been assessed overhead charges and space charges. Until this year the Library provided free-of-charge translation services, document delivery services, and self-service photocopying. Costs for these services are now billed back to the originating Division/Branch. Director, Suzanne Grefsheim indicated that the NIH Library budget has seen increases in the last few years. These increases were used to support the procurement of more electronic resources, supported and requested by the users.

Budget Comparison Between NLM and NIH Library Services
Table 1. Comparison of Operations and Services
  NLM Library NIH Library
Library Services

Note: NLM training primarily for librarians; NIH training primarily for end-user.
  • Cataloging
  • Preservation
  • Reference
  • Databases
  • Document Delivery
  • Extramural Funding
  • National Library Network
  • Publications
  • Training and Outreach
  • Online Searching
  • Research Updates
  • Translation
  • E-mail listserv
  • Custom services (journal management, clinical liaison, bibliographic databases, Web pages)
  • Training
Hours of Operation
(Holiday and seasonal variation in schedules)
*Reference assistance until 8:00 pm.
Mon 8:30 am - 5:00 pm
Tue 8:30 am - 5:00 pm
Wed 8:30 am - 5:00 pm
Thu 8:30 am - 9:00 pm*
Fri 8:30 am - 5:00 pm
Sat 8:30 am - 12:30 pm
Sun   Closed
Mon - Thu
   7:45 am - 10:00 pm
Fri 7:45 am - 6:00 pm
Sat 8:30 am - 6:00 pm
Sun 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Reference (M-F 8:30 - 5:00)
Photo Copy Service (M-Th 8 - 8; F 8-6; S 10 - 5; Su 1- 5)
Reference Services
in FY 2000
*NLM has a single point to process requests, the total includes enquires about products and services.
Total:*   114,427
Onsite     51,456
Remote    62,871

Onsite   363,780
ILL       390,574

**Circulation of Documents and Books
Total:   44,328
Information Desk
(Reference):   12,617
Circulation Desk Information
(Call Number Look-up; availability of journals, etc.)
Materials Budget
*FY 00 Budget
**Projected FY 01 budget;
Total:*   $5,370,797
Serials     4,374,230
Books        542,659
Non-Print   161,305
Historical     292,603
Non-Print does not include licencing access to secondary databases. NLM plans to increase licencing for more electronic materials in FY 01.
Total:**    $3,000,000
Serials         1,800,000
Books            200,000
Non-Print    1,000,000
Non-Print category includes electronic journal subscriptions and databases.
Customer Base
  • Health care providers, researchers, scholars, and students
  • librarians and information specialists
  • historians of medicine and science
  • general public
NIH library services are only available to current NIH employees
Primary audience 6-8,000 currently employed physicians and Ph.D. researchers.
*Staffing figures reported for NLM's Division of Library Operations only. There is a small discrepancy between the total FTE and the numbers reported for individual sections. The 281.46 total is the accurate figure.
*Total: 281.46 FTE
  • Acquire, Organize, Preserve Biomedical Information [Equivalent to NAL TSD, Preservation, and Special Collections] = 174.6
  • Provide Access to Biomedical Information [Equiv. to NAL PSD] = 83.3
  • Increase Awareness & Use of NLM Services Among Health Professionals = 10
  • Increase Awareness & Use of NLM Services Among the Public = 6.31
  • Strengthen the National Network of Libraries of Medicine = 3.6
  • Further Medical Informatics Research = 3.6
Total: 56 FTE

Federal Positions
  • Translators = 2
  • Information & Education Srvcs [Equivalent to NAL PSD, IRSB -- nearly all professional level] = 20
  • Collection Organization & Management [Equiv. to NAL TSD -- 4 librarians] = 8
  • Information Delivery [Equiv. to NAL PSD, DDSB -- 1 librarian] = 18
  • Administrative Staff = 3
  • Systems [Equiv. to NAL ISD -- 3 computer specialists and 2 in-training] = 5
20 Contract Employees: photocopying services, shelving, some pulling, and maintaining the self-service photocopy center
Total Budget
Projected for FY 01
Library Operations:
Total NLM:
$9,500,000 (includes budget for overhead and space charges ~ $850,000)

Budget Comparison: NAL and NLM, Division of Library Operations
Table 2 outlines NLM's organizational structure. The column "Equiv. To NAL" will have a check mark if the NLM entity has a counterpart at NAL. Within the organizational structure of NLM the Division of Library Operations most closely approximates the services and functions of the National Agricultural Library.
Chart 1 tracks the % Change in NLM's Division of Library Operations budget between 1992 and 2001. The average percent change was 7.6% increase/year with a range of 1.3 to 18.1%. {Percent change = [(Budget total year 2 - Budget total year 1)/Budget total year 2] * 100}
Chart 2 provides information about the relative size and trend of the NLM's Division of Library Operations budget relative to the overall NLM budget. The last column in Table 2, “$'s in LO Budget” will have a check mark if the budget information for that division/branch has been included “Library Operations Budget” in the accompanying chart.
Finally, Chart 3 provides direct budget comparison between NLM's Division of Library Operations and the NAL budget for the last ten years.
Table 2. Comparison of NLM and NAL Organizational Structure
Organizational Unit Equiv.To NAL $'s in
LO Budget
Office of the Director Yes No
Advisory Body: NLM Board of Regents No No
Office of Administration Yes No
Office of Communications and Public Liaison Yes No
Office of Health Information Program Development No No
Library Divisions
Division of Extramural Programs No No
Advisory Body: Biomedical Library Review Com. No No
Biomedical Information Support Branch No No
International Programs Branch No No
Office of Program Planning and Evaluation No No
Division of Library Operations Yes Yes
Advisory Body: NLM Literature Selection Technical
                   Review Committee
No Yes
Bibliographic Services Division Yes Yes
Index Section Yes Yes
Medlars Management Section Yes Yes
History of Medicine Division Yes Yes
Medical Subject Headings Section Yes Yes
National Information Center on Health Services
No Yes
National Network Office No Yes
Public Services Division Yes Yes
Collection Access Section Yes Yes
Preservation and Collection Management Yes Yes
Reference Section Yes Yes
Technical Services Division Yes Yes
Cataloging Section Yes Yes
Selection and Acquisition Section Yes Yes
Serials Records Section Yes Yes
Division of Specialized Information Services No No
Biomedical Information Services Branch No No
Biomedical Files Implementation Branch No No
Office of Outreach and Special Populations No No
Lister Hill National Center for Biomedical
No No
Advisory Body: LHNCBC Board of Scientific
No No
Audiovisual Program Development Branch No No
Cognitive Science Branch No No
Communications Engineering Branch No No
Computer Science Branch No No
Office of High Performance Computing and
No No
National Center for Biotechnology Information No No
Advisory Body: NCBI Board of Scientific Counselors No No
Basic Research Branch No No
Information Engineering Branch No No
Information Resources Branch No No
Office of Computer & Communications Systems Yes No
System Technology Branch Yes No
Application Branch Yes No

Note: There is no comparable function at NLM for the customized individual reference services to special audiences provided by the Information Centers at the National Agricultural Library.

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Last Updated August 13, 2002