How to Use a Health Library
Health libraries need to have qualified staff to help you with any problems on how to use a health library, which can be very helpful especially for members of the general public.
How to use a health library is not exactly rocket science, and hopefully most physicians, medical professionals and medical students will be of higher than average intelligence, so it shouldn't be too much of a problem, mind you, who knows, most doctors certainly didn't pay attention in 'hand writing class' did they? Health libraries are also often available for the general public, so it is pretty important to make sure that you don't find the wrong information and start worrying about some contagious deadly disease when you've actually got a bit of a head cold, although on the other hand, it might be worse if you thought you had a head cold when you really had some contagious deadly disease. Better leave it to the health professionals; they know how to use the library properly.
Using a Health Library
All medical schools, colleges and universities have to be in possession of their own health library before they can even become accredited, so generally most medical students should be familiar with the process of using a health library before they are let loose on the general public, especially the sick members of the general public. Part of the accreditation procedure is that they should also have some qualified library staff on hand to help out with how to use the health library and how to get the most out of it. Reference, cross reference and double cross referencing symptoms and signs must get pretty confusing, after all.
Virtual Health Library
Many health libraries also have the facility to access a virtual health library which can be much more immediate and up to date, after all, it is much easier to make amendments to online information than it is to cross a bit out of a printed book (and that would make the librarian cross too). Many of these virtual health libraries are freely available, although it may be necessary to register before you can gain full access.
When a vet is out of town, being able to access a virtual veterinary library can be helpful for cases which may never have been seen before. Since the patient load at a vet is lower than at a hospital, sometimes strange cases come in which need more specialized care. With access to a medical library, those strange cases can be treated before things get worse.
United States National Library of Medicine
The world's largest biomedical library is the United States National Library of Medicine (NLM) which collects and supplies access to some of what is largely regarded as the best available health information, partly because it is linked to the National Institutes of Health. Numerous different databases are maintained by the NLM, including OMIM (a genetic traits database) and MEDLINE.