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On the fringe: working as a Health Education/Information Officer

Sue Lacey Bryant (Health Education/Information Officer, Croydon Health Authority, UK)

Aslib Proceedings

ISSN: 0001-253X

Article publication date: 1 January 1986



More library and information workers are likely to develop their careers ‘beyond the fringe’ of conventional librarianship. The post of Health Education/Information Officer (HE/IO) within Croydon Health Education Department demonstrates the potential to do so. The HE/IO acts as an information broker. Four main areas of activity are identified: (1) developing the library and information service; (2) meeting the information needs of colleagues; (3) promoting a healthy life‐style; (4) promoting the Health Education Department's services. The library has been reorganised. It is becoming a focus for other organisations seeking advice on handling information. The relevance of online searching is being tested. The creation of the post has enabled colleagues to concentrate on assessment, not retrieval, and has expanded the information dimension of the Department's work. The broker, like other Health Education Officers, undertakes research, liaison, planning, organisation, publicity and teaching. Library displays, reference packs of leaflets and information packs are used to promote health through libraries. Successful information brokerage requires wholehearted commitment to full participation in the work of a team, willingness to adapt and acquire new skills, and flexibility. Librarians and information workers could assume several different roles within Health Education Units.


Lacey Bryant, S. (1986), "On the fringe: working as a Health Education/Information Officer", Aslib Proceedings, Vol. 38 No. 1, pp. 17-23.




Copyright © 1986, MCB UP Limited