WHO/Europe donates latest publications to key medical libraries in Kyrgyzstan

Dr Jarno Habicht, WHO Representative, meeting with Director of Republican Scientific Medical Library of Ministry of Health Mrs Guljan Kitarova for WHO book donation in 2016.

In October 2016, WHO/Europe shared approximately 1000 copies of its latest publications with 3 of Kyrgyzstan’s main medical libraries: Kyrgyz State Medical Academy, the Osh State University Faculty of Medicine and the Republican Scientific Medical Library of the Kyrgyz Ministry of Health.

Over the course of the month, WHO Country Office Representative Dr Jarno Habicht visited the libraries in Bishkek and Osh to learn more about their needs, visitors and availability of the latest international literature on public health. While access to electronic materials is increasing in Kyrgyzstan, books and paper versions of journals are highly valued.

Coincidentally, the Republican Scientific Medical Library celebrated its 70th anniversary in the same month, and Kyrgyzstan celebrated UN Day on 24 October.

“The visit to the Medical Library of the Ministry of Health in Bishkek was very fruitful to learn more about the everyday work of the team and the Medical Library’s networking to over 30 other health-related libraries in the country, to observe the publications storage, and to donate the latest WHO publications to benefit the visitors. While visitors are looking more to electronic publications and databases, the books on paper are still highly valued,” said Dr Habicht. “For the country, the knowledge of English in modern medicine and guidelines is of great importance, especially for young specialists, students and future doctors and nurses, who wish to grow as well, working side by side with the rest of the world.”

WHO/Europe publications, which cover the majority of health issues and aspects of health-sector development, are a substantial resource for policy dialogues and action planning in the global health sphere. Sharing knowledge through publications and providing access to the latest updates with those who are eager to keep up with information is crucial for both WHO/Europe and countries in the WHO European Region. These resources are meaningful to many, and especially for 25-year-old Kyrgyzstan, whose health system is in development both politically and practically.

The donated materials, printed in English and Russian, cover health topics including the life-course approach, reproductive health, noncommunicable and communicable diseases, health financing and health insurance, and service delivery. Health 2020, the European policy for health and well-being, is also included.
Publications are in the form of regional strategies, guidelines, tools, studies from the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies, issues of WHO/Europe magazines, country profiles, bulletins, etc. WHO/Europe selected the libraries based on their users, capacity, scope and coverage of available information, and openness to further cooperation.